December 14, 2005
I got into Viña del Mar very early today, exhausted from my overnight bus ride. I took a walk around town and discovered what a charming place it is. Located on the coast, Viña has lots of beach resorts, parks, a casino owned by the city, and the biggest shopping mall in South America. Among many other things, the mall contains a huge Wal-Mart like store that has 68 checkout lines! I couldn't believe how big everything was there.
I decided to try couchsurfing again, and just like last time, it has been a great experience. Shannon, from California, and Cote, from Chile, are a young married couple living in a nice condo on top of a hill with a great view of Viña del Mar and Valparaiso. They almost constantly host people. In fact, a girl from Argentina named Juliana is also staying there now. In February, Shannon and Cote will begin their own RTW trip, beginning with Easter Island.
I was too tired to do much of anything today other than walk around town for a bit, so I just had a relaxing evening with Shannon, Cote, and Juliana, and called it a night early.