Saturday, November 28, 2009

South America Day 10: La Ciudad de los Muertos

November 28, 2009

I walked on, following the map, another ten or twelve blocks, where I arrived at the cemetery. Yes, that's right, the cemetery - it's one of Punta Arenas's main attractions. Trust me!

It doesn't look like much from outside

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but inside that long, blank wall is a serene space that resembles an admittedly eccentric neighborhood

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more than a graveyard. (The neighbors are just very quiet, I guess.)

I walked up and down the paths of the pretty little necropolis

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enjoying the absurd and beautiful mausolea

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as well as the landscaping, which featured some tormented topiary cypresses:

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They are so odd looking that I can't decide what they remind me of - upside down ice cream cones? Karst mountains like the ones we saw in China? Dunce caps?

This cross with an anchor at its base

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marks the grave of one Captain Adolfo Andresen,

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a whaling captain who was the first to bring the Chilean flag to Antarctica. He was accompanied on his travels by a lady named Wilhelmine Schroeder, who was the first woman to live in the Antarctic. The signage doesn't specify the relationship between these two intrepid explorers, but I like to think they were great and good friends.

Once I was done enjoying the city of the dead, I walked back to where I'd left Daddy, passing some typically understated Chilean political discourse on the way:

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We returned to the ship and returned to our grueling routine of resting, before dining at Las Ramblas, the little tapas restaurant on Deck 12. I could happily make a meal of appetizers anytime, so I was delighted. We ate with Pat and Tony, and stayed together trading stories until 9 PM, when they deserted us to snag front-row seats for tonight's show. At that point, we chose to retire, since we have a very early day tomorrow: We finally get to see glaciers!

1 comment:

goldiebug said...

Reminds me of New Orleans cemeteries. Very cool.