Category Archives: National Symbols * Símbolos Nacionales

33 Miners: Comin’ Up!

 

Rescate Minero- 1º en salir, Florencio Ávalos

12:15 AM Miner Florencio Ávalos, the first miner to reach the surface

 

Back Story: Copiapó, northern Chile. A shaft in the San José copper and gold mine collapsed on Aug 5, trapping 33 miners inside. Early attempts to rescue them failed, apparently sealing their fate. Days passed. Hope dwindled. Whispers of “no air,” “extreme heat,” “no food; no water; no light” made the rounds. More time passed. Talk of stopping the rescue efforts began, but the families of these 33 men refused to give up hope.

“They’re miners,” they said. “They know what they’re doing, and they are alive down there,” they insisted. And they were right. Continue reading

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Chile’s Bicentennial Naval Review

Let’s face it, with 2,700 miles of coastline, Chile is a maritime country, and the national Armada (that’s Navy) pulls some weight. This year’s Bicentennial Celebrations included a Naval Review. Some 300 ships from Chile and 5 other countries participated, and the Air Force joined in for good measure.

Chile's Bicentennial Naval Review, Wulff Castle in Viña del Mar

Although the Parada Militar (check out images of that from last year) takes place every year, this is just the 13th Naval Review–the first took place 100 years ago to mark the Centennial Celebration.  Continue reading

Postcards from Chile: Bicentennial Greetings!

Chile's Bicentennial Fireworks in Viña del Mar

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Postcards from Chile: Peanut Vendor (Manicero)

Vendedor de Mani--Peanut Vender

El "Manicero." Old-time peanut vendor.

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Chilean Arpilleras: A chapter of history written on cloth

Arpillera de adorno by Violeta Morales 1992

Decorative arpilleras reflect the idyllic tranquility of country life, Chile 1992

Arpilleras—colorfully enchanting patchwork images depicting daily life—you’ve probably seen them in crafts fairs in Chile and even in Peru. Maybe you’ve even bought some. They’re bright and cheerful, perfect little gifts and ideal for children’s rooms—but they didn’t start out that way. These colorful appliques–arpilleras de adorno (decorative arpilleras)–were born of a much darker past.

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Chile’s Bicentennial: Celebrating what we are

Chile's Bicentennial posterCan a country as diverse as Chile be summed up in a single graphic image? Today some thoughts on the official Bicentennial Poster.

Chile loves “concursos”—contests, competitions—of all sorts. They may be of the playful, champion-determining type (sports, games, dances, etc.); the best-of type (the arts, literature, music, etc.); the who-shall-we-hire type; and the who-gets-the-bid type. So it really wasn’t surprising to see that the Bicentennial Committee sponsored a concurso for the official Bicentennial Poster. The theme was declared “Celebrating what we are,” and here is final result.  Take a look. How well does the poster  represent Chile to you? Continue reading

September: the month of Chilenidad

September: the month of Chilenidad

Chilenidad. What a great word. It means “Chileanness,” and Chileans take it very seriously indeed. And September, the month of Independence Day on September 18 (also taken very seriously) AKA “El Dieciocho” and Fiestas Patrias (ditto) and especially this one, the 200th 18th, makes for some pretty good reasons to think just exactly what Chilenidad is all about.

Chilean Flag banners in Andean Town © M Snook

A small Andean town deep in the Elqui Valley prepares for "18" with Chilean flag banners

Wikipedia (c’mon, admit it, we all use it!) says Chilenidad is: Continue reading