So Saturday January 9th we went out for the day to explore Parque de O'Higgins. It is
the 2nd largest park in Santiago and where they hold the State Military Parades, Festivals, etc.
Below is the parade grounds...
... and they have a small amusement park called Fantislandia. This is a great park for the locals to visit. Lots of families were out having picnics for the day, exercising, etc.
We walked around quite a bit of the park. I am sure it was once very beautiful but now seems a little run down.
They do have a speed skate track and I enjoyed watching the kids train.
This young girl was all business and her coach was right on her heels pushing her all the way..
We did find a little Chinese park and had to take a photo in front of it.
We left the park through the west gate and walked up the sidewalk beside it. Soon we saw big tents and small tents dotting the landscape. Booths were being set up with items to sell and we could see dozens of people preparing food and the smell of roasting meat was in the air and a huge stage was the main attraction in the midst of it all.
We found the entrance and had to pay $1.75 to get into the event. They handed us a flyer and as we read it we realized we had just walked into "Fiesta de los Abrazos 2016" of the Communist Party of Chile. A huge 2 day event calling for the end to democracy, ending US Blockade of Cuba, ending the USA and promoting all things socialist and Communist.
Here is a tent set up by the Pablo Neruda Foundation. He was a great supporter of the Communist Party when they were in control of Chile from the 1920's to 1973.
There was a whole lot of "Free Market" commerce going on for a true communist event. Here are the communist pins for sale. It turns my stomach to know that all leftists herald Che Guevera, the Argentine revolutionary who became the official and literal "Cuban Executioner" of anyone he or Fidel Castro deemed a traitor or enemy to their regime, as a great hero of communism. His image was quite prominent.
As well as Fidel's.
Well, after about 20 minutes of wandering around and looking at all the Chilean and Chinese souvenirs, clothes, and average Fair fare for sale, and realizing the food was not going to be ready anytime soon, we left. Stepping out and away from that propaganda was like taking a breath of fresh air.
We caught the Metro and went into the big Food Markets of Santiago Centro. The entire upstairs of this market is restaurants and we found a somewhat quiet corner to get some delicious food.
Down on the market floor they had some good Salsa music going on.
After lunch we ventured to another open market. It was quite crowded where....
It was quite crowded in this market,
but it is where we saw ....
Some very delicious (?) looking pork...
and delectable seafood for sale.
We were amazed watching this pretty Senora take her machete and hack the ends off the corn. She was quite skilled.
We bought some fresh fruit and vegetables and headed home.
All in all it was a delightful day!