Thursday, September 17, 2009

Spring in Chile (September)

Spring is coming-I see evidence on the sunnier days, although we still have many overcast and cloudy ones. I found this queltehue nest recently. Mom sits on it most of the time but if you walk near, she walks off, shrieking noisily as if to say "follow me! Nothing to see there!' If you follow her, she attempts to lead farther and farther from the nest. Papa queltehue generally stays nearby to help ward off danger.

A few fruit trees are starting to bloom. Almond and Cherry seem to be the earliest. Keep in mind that it's a bit colder, closer to the mountains in our area. A few miles away, lemon and oranges have ripened on the trees but I will never be able to grow here! But lovely seasons.

This flower stays alive all winter and blooms a little. I've seen the heavy winter frost crystallize the flower that simply perks up in the sun. But spring brings a new resurgence of growth and blooms in very early spring. There are many colors and they seed freely. Somehow, each flower looks slightly different than the parent.

This photo may not look "spring-like" but this is a sight I often see and love. This was taken just after dusk showing the moon rising over the Andes. The peaks are still snow-covered and the trees are mostly bare. The pink on the mountains is a reflection of the setting sun.

Chile Election Update

Here's a newer poll on the Chile presidential election.

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) - This year’s presidential election in Chile may not be as safe for the opposition candidate as thought until now, according to a poll by CEP. 35 per cent of respondents would vote for Sebastián Piñera of the opposition centre-right Alliance for Chile (AC) in the December ballot, up one point since June.

Former president Eduardo Frei of the centre-left Agreement of Parties for Democracy (CPD) is a close second with 30 per cent, followed by independent, left-wing candidate Marco Enríquez-Ominami with 16 per cent. Support is much lower for left-wing candidate Jorge Arrate, former Senate president Adolfo Zaldívar, and independent, left-wing candidate Alejandro Navarro.

In a prospective run-off scenario, Piñera holds a three-point lead over Frei.

If the presidential election took place this Sunday, who would you vote for?

Jun. 2009

Dec. 2008

Sebastián Piñera



Eduardo Frei



Marco Enríquez-Ominami



Alejandro Navarro



Adolfo Zaldívar



Jorge Arrate



Would not vote



Not sure



Pinera is the only candidate on the right.

Enríquez-Ominami is shaking things up, accusing Pinera of lying as Frei has but the newcomer has a whole new audience of younger people. The first round of Chile’s presidential election is scheduled for Dec. 11.

An earlier June poll gave Pinera 41%, 42% in August but now just 35%.

Suppose these two candidates reach the second round of the presidential election. If this were the case, who would you vote for?

Aug. 2009

Jun. 2009

Sebastián Piñera



Eduardo Frei



Not sure / Would not vote



President Michelle Bachelet(who can't run again consecutively) enjoys 73% popularity which has not yet translated to Frei. There will certainly be a runoff between two candidates-the question is "who will get the votes from which candidate?"