Did you know that when you pick travel destinations based on flight times syncing with nap schedules you run the risk of not having a clue what there is to see when you get to said destination. Yeah, let that sink in – traveler of the year over here.
It’s not that Mary isn’t cool – I mean the whole immaculate conception things is either the greatest miracle ever, or, depending on your personal religious beliefs, the most successful teen pregnancy scam ever – but she isn’t Jesus. Here’s how the mix-up happened:
- I have never, even before kids, been a sightseeing guru – ever. Just ask any of my former travel partners. They would tell you that while I love tackling the logistical side of traveling, like lodging and transportation, the day to day stuff is not my forte.
- My Spanish is terrible. I kept hearing that we needed to climb the Cerro San Cristóbal to see the statue on the top. Then, despite consciously knowing that Cristo is Christ and cruz is cross, I kept subconsciously translating Cerro to cross and Cristóbal to Christ. So I was all kinds of wrong thinking it was the Cross of Christ instead of the Hill of Saint Christopher. Just add that to my long list of Spanish fails.
- To fair, anyone else could have looked it up too.
So that’s the fail part. The good news is that it was still a cool place to see even if we didn’t know what we were seeing. First, we walked to the base of the cerro (which I know now to mean hill). There’s a zoo and some nice trails that head up from there. Since we had two toddlers in tow, we opted out of a hike and instead took the 91-year-old Funicular de Santiago up the hill.
The funicular was very old and very steep and we made sure to get front row views.
When we got to the top station, we still had a ways to go. There were a lot of stairs to climb which was hands down Millie’s favorite part of the whole entire trip. Lucky Andy happened to be holding Paige, who was content being carried up. Unlucky me, had Millie who, despite being tired and wobbly, insisted on climbing every single step. It was exhausting.
When we finally got to the top, we looked up. We said, “Yay! We get to see Jesus! But wait, the sun is in my eyes.”
Oops. That is totally Mary.
But like I said, Mary is still pretty special. Also, the views were indeed spectacular. We got to gaze out over part of the huge city that is home to some 5+ million people and beyond that (and a bit of fog and smog) we caught a glimpse of the Andes mountains as you can see in the picture below.
After we checked it all out, it was time to head back down and I was happy to note that even though we never found Jesus, we did see some crosses after all.
If you’ve ever wondered what a ride on a near-century old funicular looks like, here’s my video. As always, my commentary is super awkward. Below that are some more pictures.