Note this post covers the 10th of Feb
Next morning we went up to the utterly massive cross they’d built recently on a high hill in Coquimbo. They’re big on religious symbolism in South America it seems. The cross itself was very impressive and imposing, and the view from up near the top inside it was spectacular.
At the base of the cross, before the elevators to take you up to the viewing area in the horizontal beams, there was a very large and ornate church, and a museum full of jewellery, goblets, fine robes and art, including giant paintings of the last couple of Popes (the current one really does look evil). The thing that struck me about this was all the people living on the hill around the cross, were in a state of total poverty, living in buildings which were often no better than shacks. Personally, I found it incredibly distasteful. My cousin later mentioned the same thought to me – I was glad I wasn’t the only one who felt that way about it.