I have arrived in Santiago for two weeks of training before proceeding to Patagonia. There about 50 or so volunteers here for the training, all heading to different regions in Chile. We are all staying in a hostel, which will certainly get tiresome after two weeks, but it is centrally located and there is a great patio with foosball. The weather in Santiago today is amazing. Warm, sunny, a nice breeze, and not even smog on the horizon. I was amazed at the sheer size of the Andes as my plane descended this morning... row after row of sharp ridges poked up through the clouds. This city seems quite pleasant thus far; a quick stroll around Barrio Brasil revealed colorful building facades and lots of shady trees lining the streets.
I have been assigned to my official area, which is the city of Coyhaique. It contains almost half of the entire population of Region XI, Aisen. The population density in Aisen outside of Coyhaique is roughly one person per square kilometer. I wonder if I will stand out as a gringo?