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Comet ISON Tour – November 9-10, 2013 Vicuna

November 9th was our second day in Vicuna. I slept in after a great night up at the El Pangue Observatory. I was up to strolling around town. Walking around town, here are some of the things I saw:

Women that Struggle for You

A poster for Senate candidate Adriana Munoz featuring socialist Presidential candidate Michelle Bachelet. The slogan can be translated as “Women that struggle for you.” Our tour of Chile took place the week before the first round of Chile’s Presidential elections and signs, billboards and posters were everywhere. Interestingly, the two presidential candidates who survived the first round of voting were both women. I think the United States has a few things to learn from Chile.

Pickles in Plastic in Chile

Vicuna had a supermarket, which I visited for bottled water and for snacks on our upcoming bus rides. The supermarket was mostly laid out in the same style as a US market, including a toy aisle. One thing that was different was that pickles came in plastic bags. They looked tempting, but weren’t really bus-worthy.

Head and raven in Vicuna Chile

This is from the center of Vicuna’s town square, also called Plaza de Armas. All four of the towns I visited in Chile had a central square called Plaza de Armas. I believe that is probably where a military garrison was first established during the colonial period.

Female sculpture in Vicuna Chile-001

Also in the Plaza de Armas was this unusual wood sculpture. It seemed to be relatively well cared for.

Cactus flowers in Vicuna Chile

One of the great things about being in Chile this time of year was all of the flowers.

After the stroll, I laid down again because I wasn’t fully 100% yet. Then it clouded over, cancelling our second night at the observatory. I had mixed feelings about this. On the one hand I would have LOVED a chance to go back on the mountain. On the other hand, I credit the extra sleep I got that night with my mostly full recovery.

The next morning we still had a little time in Vicuna, so I strolled some more with a few friends from the tour and we visited the artists’ market:

Welcome to the Vicuna village of artisans

It was mostly closed, but still pretty to look at. It had a map of the region we were visiting:

Valle de Elqui Where I stayed

Around noon, it was time to board our tour bus for the amazing town of Pisco Elqui. That town deserves its own blog entry.

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