The next day we hit the tourist trail in Santiago. First up was the Plaza de Armas and Ashley Craddock, was to be our guide having spent the day in Santiago while we skiied. Having confirmed that she knew where the Plaza de Armas was we started walking and after about half an hour enquired if we were nearly there; "Oh, are we going to the Plaza de Armas I thought we were just walking". D'oh! Eventually despite Ashley's continued "helpful" directions, mostly pointing us in the wrong direction, we found the Plaza de Armas. There was some sort of show going on there so we joined the crowd to see what was going on, which was possibly not the best idea! It turned out that it was a comedy show and that a blond and a ginger stood in the crowd was just too irresistible for the comedians. We were dragged into the circle, they said stuff we mostly didn't understand, about a hundred people laughed at us and then we went on our way! We then headed to the fish market for lunch. Ashley, already having a shocker, ordered chicken. We then went to the museum of Precolombine art, which was incredibly interesting. It was there that Ashley realised that somewhere in the crowds somebody had slashed her bag open, but her luck was changing as a well placed book prevented anything from being taken! In the evening we had an asado with some of the staff from the hostel and a couple of other guests too. This turned into drinks, which eventually turned into an invite to probably one of the coolest parties I've ever been to. This party moves around the city, changing every weekend, and is held and different Mansions. Essentially if you didn't know somebody cool enough to be going you weren't going either, we've met several people who lived in Santiago for a year and weren't even aware it existed, which is surprising given the scale of the thing!
On our final day in Chile we decided to go to Valparaiso on the recommendation of a couple of people. Unfortunately a combination of sore heads from the night before, poor weather and the fact it was sunday so everything was shut meant that the best bit of the trip was probably the bus ride home. It is supposed to be very scenic and all the houses are multicoloured, but to me it just seemed a kind of dirty, slightly creepy version of the favelas in Brazil! In the evening we went to the cinema to see Transformers 2 and Ashley bought Richard and I popcorn.
The next few days were spent traveling back to Mar del Plata where we arrived at 8am, just in time to get my exam results, which I already posted on the blog. I was greeted back to the Richerri's by Pablo shouting "Ronnie! You came back!" in Spanish, not sure I'll ever know why I'm Ronnie, apparently its my "War name" as Pablo says in English(his own translation as nombre de batalla is nickname). Still it was definitely good to be back!