This is the only shot any paparazzi scored of the famed Family Livingston during their long weekend in Santiago, Chile. #toughlife
Since no pictures exist, I’ll just have to fill you all in myself. CelebrityBuzz/ EntertainmentTonight Style.
Russ, Pat, and their son Chris Livingston (21) arrived at the Santiago International Airport at 7:35am and stealthily avoided all crowds by taking the back door out to a waiting taxi. After resting and refreshing at the Santiago Crowne Plaza, they arrived at their midday press conference at the W Santiago and graciously answered questions and posed for pictures with fans.
Kidding. Obviously. Although I’m sure if given the opportunity the Family Livingston would indeed graciously sign autographs and pose for pictures…
Anyway. A few highlights do make tonight’s news ticker.
On Mother’s Day Night we ate at the adorable cafe next to Parque Bustamante near where I live (which I frequent often) for paninis, pizza, craft beer, and good conversation. Mom got some genuine Alpaca yarn for her next knitting project from yours truly. Dad and Chris got her a massage at the spa in the hotel. I think she felt very pampered.
The one time my unfortunate monolingual (not 10 words in spanish between the 3 of them) ventured out to find food without my translating assistance, they met with a comical lost-in-translation incident. At a quaint pizzeria near the hotel, they ordered 3 personal pizzas with cheese and sausage. The word for sausage in spanish is “chorizos.” When the pizzas arrived, they had “choritos” on top. Oyster-topped pizza. Yum-my!
We spent a lovely day in Valparaíso, Chile which is a quaint, laid-back, artsy town on the coast about and hour and a half outside of Santiago. We climbed hills, saw Pablo Neruda’s other house there, and ate outside in the beautiful weather at a cafe overlooking the port. We visited the marina, and were followed by two sketchy characters from Honduras (who were painfully obvious about being after my camera) to the Maritime Museum. Luckily, with our extensive street know-how we lost them after we ducked into a little bar atop Cerro Concepción. We watched and debated the process behind unloading/reloading the enormous container ships that transport 98% of the world’s goods in the Valparaíso dock. My mother made a stray dog friend who barked at any people passing us on the sidewalk, I swear she was going to take it home with us. We had a delicious seafood dinner at the marina and took a bus back to Santiago.
On Monday morning, my mother and I went to la Vega which is the HUGE produce market in the middle of the city (the boys slept in). Literally you can get any kind of fruit/vegetable/herb/nut/spice/sauce there that you have ever heard of and several that you haven’t. I warned her before to not be alarmed by the whistles and calls thrown my way, but I didn’t think about them directed at her: she received her fair share of “piropos” also. I guess chilean men just love blondes, of all ages.
Chile is in the middle of an energy crisis right now and the National Congress has just approved a law allowing the damning of rivers in Patagonia to create hidroelectric energy. Chileans love to exercise their right to protest and do so often. On Monday night after a lovely dinner with my family and roommates, headed back to Plaza Italia (where we live) on the metro, we all got a mouth/lungfull of the tear gas they use to dissipate the protesting crowds here in Santiago. You would think we had all just watched Bambi as we walked up to the hotel with eyes streaming, oh well, that’s Chile.
My family has an exaggerated idea of how many people I know in Santiago. At Pablo Neruda’s house I ran into Wolfpup (reference post #13 or No Pants Patagonia) who was visiting Santiago on a school trip, AND my friend Amelia who is the only other american in my figure drawing class. In Valparaíso, I ran into the Hipster German (#13) and his girlfriend, also I saw two irishwomen who stayed in our hostal in Patagonia. At Mother’s Day Night dinner my friend Anneke and her boyfriend showed up at the same cafe we were eating at. I swear I don’t know that many people here, it’s just that we ran into ALL of them during the weekend.
To sum it up, we hit all the major tourist hotspots around the city including (but not limited to) Plaza de Armas, Palacio la Moneda, Pablo Neruda’s house, Bellavista, Barrio Lastarria, Barrio Italia, Las Condes, Catedral Nacional, and Cerro Santa Lucia. It was a marvelous time, was so refreshing to see my family, and after 6 days I was glad to say goodbye. At least for a bit.
I send them, and everyone my love from Chile!