Just as our new friend informed us our taxista Reuben, arrived shortly. The drive to the BNB was about 30 minutes. In those 30 minutes Reuben and I laughed our asses off and he gave me the low-down on his country straight and to the point. Here are highlights of that conversation.
- chile is not a racist society but definitely classist, race does however run loosely along those lines, here's why...
- first off chile is a homogenous society, "we all look the same" until after WW2 many Germans came here with money and created a high wealthy class. So the wealthy are more blonde and "straight nosed" like their rich German ancestors.
- The first black people Chileans have authentically been exposed to have been in the last 5 years with many Haitians and Domincans coming to a stronger economy to escape poverty.
- the Chileans are peaceful, loving, happy people so they have welcomed these immigrants who are "ya golpeado" (already beat-up, like suffering) and no one wants to make them suffer more. Of course like in any society you'll find a jerk in the crowd, but that is not the main mindset of the Chilean people
-people will stare at you because we still don't see many black people and your hair is different, and you're pretty. (I liked that last part)
- the classism is like a thermometer. Starting from the airport to the mountain tops. Close to the airport is 1 star living, in the mountains it's 5 stars, my hotel will be 2 1/2 stars on that scale.
- Ehen asked about Chile's frequent intense earth quakes he compared it to the end of times. "The end of the world is going to start right here in Chile with a monster earthquake. When you hear in the news from the USA that chile has been wipes off the face if the earth, you need to know you all are next!" He laughed so hard at this comment and I too cracked up right along with him!!!
I cannot stress how pleasant Reuben was. Once we got to the BNB we were warmly greet by Ignacio. Ignacio now a BNB owner is also a university professor of anthropology. He is divorced with 2 adult daughters, but has remarried a Cubana and they have a daughter together plus her son who just arrived from Cuba 2 weeks ago. He jokes and played with the kids, he's a pretty funny guy actually, and he served us light sandwiches and hot chocolate I. The main dining area. He rattled off a list of other guest at the BNB a Russian, a swiss chick, a guy from Taiwan, a Chilean from another city, and some others I forgot. I look forward to meeting them all!!
We hung out for a while, dropped off out bags, and got directions from Gladys the BNB housekeeper. Before our arrival I google searched things for kids in Chile. The first thing I saw was El Museo Interactivo Mirador, it had great reviews and looked good enough for me. Gladys' directions were perfecto! We walked 5 minutes to the closest metrostation. Went 2 stops then transferred to the #5 line and got off at mirador station. We walked 10 minutes from there. The museum blew my mind!!! Our minds!!! It was better than amazing. It deserves it own post so until then please enjoy these vids of our BNB and metro experience.