Santiago, Chile

2007_3_24_Santiago,_Chile_files_shapeimage_2.pngAll night flight, surprising how refreshed you can feel when there is no jet lag to contend with. Slept a bit in the morning, had a nice lunch at the hotel, a sort of salmon ceviche and a fish called reineta, like a large, tough sole. Then to the wonderful Precolumbian Art Museum. There was a collection of clay funeral figurines from the Moche culture (0-200AD) which were quite beautiful and haunting. They reminded me of those paintings of the late Roman period that you see with people gazing into some mysterious inner space. Some were people, some were animals, and one was a Maurice Sendak Wild Thing.

Another spectacular piece was a tapestry of a similar age, also for funeral purposes, which showed fantastic creatures with alligator heads, two arms on one side and two fins on the other, and feet sticking out of fish tail ends, in gorgeous colors, swimming up and down the cloth. The label said it was about 2,000 years old, which would be hard to believe, except that it is very dry here so things last a long time. There is a desert in the north which has never had any recorded rainfall.

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