Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Colors of Valparaiso (Chile, actually)

We took a bus and went to the seaside towns Valparaiso and Vina de Mar about 2 hours away from Santiago. Everywhere we went, it was colors, colors, colors.

People here use color boldly, but pleasingly. I don’t know how they manage it, but the colors seem coordinated, not just for a single house, but for the whole street.

Even the garbage cans are painted brilliantly.

Many of the houses are actually quite small, and not particularly expensive looking. But they look clean and tidy, and colorful. It is clear that people enjoy their houses, and life.

We noticed the colors in Santiago, as soon as we went into town. But the feeling here is even more intense, if only because there are few modern buildings (of glass and steel). Valparaiso is a small port, with ugly piers for cargo ships & dockyards lining the waterfront. And the coastal range of mountains slide right down to the Pacific Ocean. So people are forced to build their small houses on the slopes. But their colors make a fantastic mural!

We passed by a band playing music in a plaza.

Then we took a cable car to the top of a cliff. The colorful mural of little houses on the slopes open impossibly widely in front of us.

Then we discovered that the plaza with the band still playing in it was right below our feet. I got more than a little dizzy looking down, because of my vertigo. But the music kept washing up. It was fantastic.

The sun was setting when we boarded the bus taking us back to Santiago. Words fail me here.

As much as I love this place, I have to leave it behind. But at least I have the pictures, and the memories!


cane said...

Nice photos! I like the Charlie Brown one :D

StephenC said...

Yeah, that was cute. I love every single one of them. Can't decide which is my favourite.

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