The United States is full of processed, chemical-filled food. Here in Chile, you can taste how fresh and organic the food is. It is so refreshing, and everything tastes so much better. Now, I’m not saying that the food back home isn’t good, because it is and I do miss it, but I really like having fresh, clean food whenever I want it. To get all the fresh food, you can go to the grocery store, but what you really should do is go to the market. It’s the kind of market that you would think you’d see in a movie: venders with their booths full of food or beauty products or even clothing. You can get anything there. There are three markets that surround each other. There is the fish market, which is all seafood and smells awful but is so fun to walk through. Then there are two very similar markets with veggies and fruits and so much more. The bigger market is the one where tour companies take you too. This particular market is so big you could honestly get lost there. Across the street is a smaller version of the tourist market. To go to these markets is such an amazing experience because you can really get a taste for the culture here in Santiago.
I have always wanted to go to a foreign market. I always imagined it being so colorful and full of life. Truth is, it is more colorful and full of life than you could imagine. I love it so much. When you’re in the market you get a real opportunity to see the culture and live it. It’s absolutely wonderful.
The smell of the fish market was pungent, a mix of the ocean and fish, which is obvious, but the smell of fish is very unpleasant. Even though the smell of the ocean is one of my favorite scents, the fish smell was too overpowering. It was still so much fun to walk through, but honestly it was kind of creepy–dead fish just staring at you with their dead eyes. Creepy. Also, once you leave, you smell like the place because there is fish smelling water all over the ground that gets on your shoes. If you’re short like me, the bottoms of your pants get wet and stinky. Thankfully, right outside there is the little fountain that shoots water right out of the ground and you just take your feet and swipe them through the water. Problem solved… unless the fish smelling water soaked the bottoms of your pants.
I am very picky when it comes to what I eat. There are some foods that I love but rarely eat because of the texture. When I travel, I make myself try new things. I mean, you can’t not try new things when traveling. So out of my comfort zone I go and I’m so happy for doing that. Like I said, the food here, even when cooked, is always so fresh tasting and I love it. Empanadas are a huge thing here. You see them being sold everywhere. Pino empanadas are absolutely amazing! I didn’t know there were different kinds until I went out to eat with some friends. I tried it and they asked me how it was. They then told me what was in it: ground beef, onions, raisins, black olives, and a hard-boiled egg. Normally empanadas are pretty big, but the restaurant we were at served certain Chilean dishes in mini sizes.
The world awaits…discover it.