CHILE – CHILE

Berza u Santjagu-The stock exchage in Santiago

Berza u Santjagu-The stock exchage in Santiago

Crkva u San Pedru-San Pedro de Atacama Church

Crkva u San Pedru-San Pedro de Atacama Church

Gradska katedrala-Santiago's Metropolitan Cathedral in Plaza de Armas

Gradska katedrala-Santiago’s Metropolitan Cathedral in Plaza de Armas

Katedrala u Punta Arenasu na jugu-Punta Arenas Cathedral on the South of Chile

Katedrala u Punta Arenasu na jugu-Punta Arenas Cathedral on the South of Chile

Krevet Pabla Nerude s pogledom na okean-Pablo Neruda's bed with the ocean view

Krevet Pabla Nerude s pogledom na okean-Pablo Neruda’s bed with the ocean view

Letovaliste Vinja del Mar na pacifickoj obali-Vina del Mar on the Pacific Coast

Letovaliste Vinja del Mar na pacifickoj obali-Vina del Mar on the Pacific Coast

Muzej lepih umetnosti u Santjagu-The Museum of Fine Arts in Santiago

Muzej lepih umetnosti u Santjagu-The Museum of Fine Arts in Santiago

Na obali Pacifika-On the Pacific coast

Na obali Pacifika-On the Pacific coast

Na severu Cilea-In the North of Chile

Na severu Cilea-In the North of Chile

Usamljena lama-A lonely llama

Usamljena lama-A lonely llama

Nacionalni park-Torres del Paine National Park

Nacionalni park-Torres del Paine National Park

Palacio de la Moneda in Santiago

Palacio de la Moneda in Santiago

Pescane dine u Dolini smrti na severu-Sand dunes in the Death Valley in the North

Pescane dine u Dolini smrti na severu-Sand dunes in the Death Valley in the North

Pogled iz Isla Negre-A view from Isla Negra

Pogled iz Isla Negre-A view from Isla Negra

Pogled na glavni grad Santjago-A view of the capital Santiago

Pogled na glavni grad Santjago-A view of the capital Santiago

Pustinjski pejzaz-A desert landscape

Pustinjski pejzaz-A desert landscape

Ranije zdanje Kongresa-The former Congress building

Ranije zdanje Kongresa-The former Congress building

Tatio gejzeri u pustinji Atakama-Tatio geysers in the Atacama desert

Tatio gejzeri u pustinji Atakama-Tatio geysers in the Atacama desert

Valparaiso

Valparaiso

Prvi i za sada jedini put posle izlaska iz carinske zone aerodroma, osećam blesak blica, kao kad se slikaju poznati po dolasku u neku zemlju. Moja drugarica iz detinjstva, Kaća Prokić, ovako obeležava moj dugo očekivani dolazak u Santjago, u kome već godinama živi sa svojim suprugom Vedranom. Ima veliku želju da mi za kratko vreme što više pokaže od svoje druge domovine, iako sam ja došao na skup plastičnih hirurga koji se održava na obližnjoj planini Valle Nevado. Na saonicama koje vuku veseli haski po obroncima Kordiljera, iznad kojih se viju kondori, počinje moj boravak u Čileu.
Glavni grad Santiago de Chile smešten je u dolini, odakle se pruža prepoznatljivi pejzaž sa višespratnim zgradama i snežnim vrhovima u pozadini. Devojke u tamnoplavim kompletićima, upravo krenule na posao, ili sa posla, ili u pauzi posla, dominiraju ulicama. Kao da je neki duh Zapada zapahnuo te mlade ljude, kojima je usađeno da znaju svoje evropsko poreklo i da ga poštuju. I zaista je ovde malo pravih Južnoamerikanaca, Mapućo indijanaca, zbog čega se Santjago, kao i njegov sused Buenos Ajres, osećaju više evropskim. To svakako ne nailazi na veliko odobravanje ostalih zemalja Južne Amerike, ali mislim da Čileancima do toga nije mnogo stalo. Ono što su nekada bili jugoslovenski, danas su uglavnom hrvatski klubovi, u čemu posetioci ne vide veliku razliku, s obzirom na to da su se njihovi preci ovde doselili još početkom XX veka. Ekonomska emigracija one najstarije Jugoslavije bila je velikim delom sa hrvatskih ostrva, ali je u dubini duše ostala vezana za svoju staru domovinu.  Rujitza je ipak Ružica i raduje se što vidi nekoga iz nekadašnje zajedničke otadžbine.
Valparaiso i Viña del Mar na pacifičkoj obali odišu atmosferom lučkih gradova, sa jatima pelikana koji krstare njihovim obalama. Prostrane bele peščane plaže samo na trenutak asociraju na lepo kupanje u moru dok ne ugledate jata pingvina koji trčkaraju po stenama, iza kojih su vile s pogledom na okean.
Jedna od njih, Isla Negra, danas pretvorena u muzej, bila je dom jednog od najpoznatijih pesnika Južne Amerike, revolucionarnog Pabla Nerude. U njoj je voleo da živi i stvara, kuva za svoje goste, da im recituje, peva i zabavlja ih, kao i da se budi sa svojom suprugom u spavaćoj sobi s najlepšim pogledom na Pacifik, u krevetu koji kao da lebdi iznad mora.
Na severu Čilea nalazi se Atakama, jedna od najlepših pustinja, za koju se kaže da je mesto sa najsuvljim vazduhom na svetu. San Pedro de Atacama je veoma živopisno mestašce, iz koga se obilazi ova čudesna pustinja neverovatnih prirodnih lepota, kao što su vulkanski gejziri i veliko slano jezero sa jatima ružičastih flaminga. Kada se pomešaju sa bojama kristala soli ili u sutom preplave nebo, tada sa bojama jezera naprave čudesnu koloritnu simfoniju, koju bi Pablo Neruda sigurno uspešnije opisao. Možda u trenutku kad ne bi bio zauzet političkom borbom protiv Pinočeove vojne hunte ili stotinama ljubavnih pesama i jednom tužnom.
Od pustinje na severu, do fjordova i glečera na jugu, skoro u blizini Južnog pola, do Uskršnjeg ostrva u Polineziji, ova zemlja jedinstvene geografije i sa šest i pô hiljada kilometara dugom obalom, pravi je biser raznolikosti.
Trebalo bi ga samo otkriti.

Septembar 1996.

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For the first, and so far the only time in my life I am startled by the flash of a camera, upon exiting the airport customs zone, just like when celebrities are photographed. My childhood friend, Kaća Prokić, thus marks my long awaited arrival in Santiago, where she has been living for years with her husband Vedran. She has a strong urge to show me as much of her second homeland as possible, in a short space of time, even though I have come to attend a plastic surgeons’ conference taking place on a neighbouring mountain Valle Nevado. So my stay in Chile begins with a sledge ride through the Cordillera, with joyful husky dogs in tandem, condors flapping their wings above our heads.
The capital, Santiago de Chile, is situated in a valley, from where a familiar view of high rise buildings and snow covered mountain peaks stretches into the distance. On the streets of the city, girls dressed in navy suits dominate the scene, whether they are on their way to work or from work, or simply taking a break. It seems that a Western spirit has prevailed here and young people have been brought up to know and appreciate their European origin. Indeed, there are very few Mapuche Indians here and that is why both Santiago and its neigbour Buenos Aires have a European feel. This definitely does not meet the approval of other Latin American peoples, but it seems to me that Chileans do not really care.
What in the past were Yugoslav clubs, are now mostly Croatian clubs, but the visitors do not really notice the difference as their ancestors emigrated to Chile at the beginning of the 20th century. The emigration that left  old Yugoslavia then in search of better living standards was mostly from the Croatian islands, but these immigrants have all kept close contact with their homeland. Rujitza still knows her real name is Ružica and she is happy to bump into someone from ex-Yugoslavia.
Valparaiso  and Viña del Mar on the shore of the Pacific Ocean have a typical port atmosphere, with clusters of pelicans cruising the sky. Vast white beaches misguide  you into thinking about a nice swim in the ocean, until you see flocks of penguins hopping around from rock to rock; behind these rocks are villas with sea view. One of the villas, Isla Negra, today a museum, used to belong to Pablo Neruda, one of the most famous Latin American poets and a revolutionary. That is where he enjoyed his life and creativity, he cooked for his guests and recited poems to them, he also sang to them and entertained them. That is where he liked to wake up next to his wife, in the room with the most beautiful view over the Pacific, in his bed which appears to be hovering above the sea surface.
In the North lies Atacama, one of the most beautiful deserts in the world, which is also said to be the driest place on Earth. San Pedro de Atacama is a very picturesque  village where you start the tour of this fascinating desert which is full of incredible beauties such as volcanic geysers and a huge salty lake with droves of pink flamingoes. When the purple of the flamingoes mixes with the lakes’ salt crystals or when the birds take to the evening sky, then together with the colours of the lake, they make a symphony of hues, probably best described by Pablo Neruda. Perhaps he would describe it indeed, in those moments when he was not occupied with his political fight agianst Pinochet’s regime or when he was not writing one of a hundred of his love poems, or the only sad one.
From the desert in the North to the fiords and glaciers in the South, close to the South Pole, through to the Easter Island in Polynesia, this country has unique geography, and with 6,500 kilomteres of coast, is a true gem.
It just needs to be discovered.

September 1996

 

Uskršnje ostrvo – Easter Island – Isla de Pasqua – Rapa Nui

 

Jezero u vulkanskom krateru-A crater lake inside Rano Kau volcano

Jezero u vulkanskom krateru-A crater lake inside Rano Kau volcano

Moai ispred vulkana Rano Raraku-Moai in front of the Rano Raraku volcano

Moai ispred vulkana Rano Raraku-Moai in front of the Rano Raraku volcano

Moai u kamenolomu-Moai at Rano Raraku quarry

Moai u kamenolomu-Moai at Rano Raraku quarry

Moai u luci-Moai in the port of Hanga Roa

Moai u luci-Moai in the port of Hanga Roa

Oborena skulptura i Nau Nau moai-The fallen moai and ahu Nau Nau

Oborena skulptura i Nau Nau moai-The fallen moai and ahu Nau Nau

Plaza Anakena-Anakena beach

Plaza Anakena-Anakena beach

Posle nedeljne mise-After Sunday mass

Posle nedeljne mise-After Sunday mass

Ahu Akivi-prethodnica od 7 domororaca koji su prvi stigli na ostrvo-Seven explorers sent to the island before the King

Ahu Akivi-prethodnica od 7 domororaca koji su prvi stigli na ostrvo-Seven explorers sent to the island before the King

Ahu Nau Nau

Ahu Nau Nau

Ahu Tongariki

Ahu Tongariki

Groblje u glavnom gradu-The cementery of Hanga Roa

Groblje u glavnom gradu-The cementery of Hanga Roa

Nakon obilaska ovog krajnje neobičnog ostrva mislim da još manje znam o njegovom istorijatu, da mi se nedoumice i dalje produbljuju. Prema legendi, nakon što ga je najpre pohodio u snovima, prvi se na njega iskrcao

polinežanski kralj Hoto Matu’a sa svojom svitom u dva velika drvena kanua, sa brojnim biljnim i životinjskim vrstama. Zajedno sa njim došla je njegova sestra, kao i stručnjak za klesanpje kamenih skulptura. Ove poznate kamene skulpture ili moai postale su simbol Uskršnjeg ostrva. Klesane su vekovima od kamenih gromada vulkana Rano Raraku i bilo ih je oko hiljadu. Šta je navodilo te ljude da im to bude najveća preokupacija u životu, ostaje velika kosmička tajna koja se već decenijama različito tumači. Po nekim teorijama figure imaju božanska lica, što ih je navodilo na njihovo vanzemaljsko poreklo i inspiraciju.

Kada su u zanosu pravljenja skulptura i njihovog premeštanja na druge delove ostrva posekli i poslednju palmu, shvatili su da je njihov opstanak došao u pitanje, jer više nisu imali drveta ni za kanue za ribolov. Bio je to povod za početak dugog plemenskog ratovanja u kome je od pedeset hiljada ljudi na ostrvu ostalo svega 111 stanovnika početkom prošlog veka. Iako su statue predstavljale simbole snage, položaja i nadmoći u društvu, klasno veoma podeljenom, kao i vezu sa božanstvima, njihova ljutnja na bogove u jednom trenutku dovela je do toga obore na lica mnoge, dotle uspravljene figure.

Cunami ih je pokrio slojem mulja i zaborava, sve dok se sa neke od njih nije zauzela jedna japanska fondacija i ponovo postavila u uspravan položaj početkom osamdesetih godina prošlog veka. Svet je počeo da otkriva nestvaran svet moai figura i da se pita koja je civilizacija mogla da stvori život u kome je vekovima jedina njegova svha bila klesanje ovih neobičnih likova u kamenu.

Mart 2013.

 

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After visiting this very unusual island it seems that I know even less about its history and my dilemmas go deeper still. According to the legend, after having seen the island for the first time in his dreams, Hoto Matu’a, a Polynesian king, was the first to disembark there, with two big wooden canoes full of his entourage and various animals and species of plants. His sister arrived with him, as did a famous sculpturer, whose well-known stone sculptures or Moai became the symbol of Easter Island. Around a thousand of them were made over centuries from the Tuff rocks of Rano Raraku volcano. What inspired the people of Easter Island to give all their time and attention to these sculptures remains a great mystery of the Universe – one that has been interpreted in many different ways over the last decades. According to some theories the figures have godly facial features, therefore it is thought the making of the figures was inspired by extra-terrestrial sources. When the zeal for making these sculptures and their moving from one end of the island to another led to even the last palm tree being cut down, the inhabitants realised that their very existence was challenged as they had no wood left to use for canoes and fishing. That was the cause of a prolonged tribal war which decimated the population of 50,000 such that at the beginning of the last century there were only 111 inhabitants left. Even though the statues represented symbols of strength, power and social status in their class society – as well as links to the gods – in their rage against their gods the people overturned many of them so they ended up face down. Tsunamis had covered them with layers of mud and obscurity when some were taken care of by a Japanese foundation which erected them again into an upright position at the beginning of the ’80s. The world started to discover the surreal world of the Moai figures and to wonder what sort of civilisation could create a life whose only purpose was the sculpting of these unusual stone statues.

March 2013

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