The next stop of the day was the Cementario General de Santiago. I love wandering around in graveyards (in the daylight!!) and reading headstones…names, dates of birth and death. Even in death you can imagine the status of a person’s life depicted by the size of their tomb or grave or by the words and epitaphs left behind.
I could have spent an entire day here looking at everything. It was so big and so old and so incredibly unique and diverse. The entire cementary covers over 200 acres and over 2 million are buried there.
Some tombs and graves were lovingly tended and maintained and clearly visited on a regular basis.
And others appeared to have been long forgotten…
Families were buried together – or soon would be…under grasses, behind bars or under stones and statues…
A memorial wall has been erected for the victims who were either killed or went missing during Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship regime which lasted from 1973 until 1990.
The thing about death we all understand is that regardless of who you are or how you died or where you’re buried…the earth continues to turn and cycle and grow – as made clear by the tombs completely overgrown by plants and bright summer blooms in the midst of these old memories.