On Saturday morning, we left my parents behind for another week with Brother. C and I caught a ride for the long 3 hours from Villa Alhue to Santiago so that we could explore the city before our nighttime flight back to the United States. At the airport we stored our bags and found a taxi to take us downtown.
Our driver spoke a little English and wanted to practice. He drove around showing us the important sights and asking questions about pronunciations and contractions. Eventually he dropped us off by a statue of Pedro de Valdivia and gave us explicit instructions to call him when we we were ready (he even gave us the pesos for the pay phone) and he would pick us up in that exact spot and take us back to the airport. He repeated those instructions several times and we were planning to follow them to the letter.
We saw many sights including the Presidential Palace and statues of various leaders including Salvador Allende. We enjoyed watching street musicians and performers and walked through a book fair and what we thought might be some sort of recruitment fair for the military.
The city was very exciting and the architecture was old world Europe and beautiful. Finally, though, our feet which had taken us up mountains and across a dance floor and all over the historic district of Santiago started to wear out, so we called our driver and went to the precise spot where he had dropped us off.
While leaning against a building and resting as we waited, I noticed a man on a bicycle in a pink silk outfit--I thought that might be something my daughter would enjoy seeing so I snapped a picture--BIG MISTAKE. He was a street performer--a mime--we don't have those in Dixfield.
He did not need any more encouragement than the click of my camera to come over to where we waited in our precise spot and begin performing.
I think that he realized we were waiting for a taxi so he stopped every one that came by. He was very entertaining even if we did become part of his props. I put my camera away, hoping that without encouragement he would move on--but he didn't. A large crowd gathered--maybe 300 maybe more--who knows. We couldn't walk away because we were to be picked up in that precise spot. I tried my best to melt into the sidewalk but C, who is the best sport in the world, played along and got plenty of applause from the crowd when finally our taxi arrived. C handed the mime some pesos and then the mime opened the front passenger door of the taxi , stood on the edge and wrapped himself in a red, white and blue scarf and saluted the crowd. It was about the funniest thing that I have ever seen.
Home now, only a few snow piles remain on the north side of the house--the kitties, the bunny and the houseplants all survived and tomorrow it's back to the real world. What an adventure it was! Thanks for sharing it with me.