As the world watches the unfolding rescue of 33 trapped miners in Chile, Chileans in the New York metro area are paying special attention.
Ana Kreiger of Manhattan said she'd been up all night watching the coverage on TV. "When I saw the first miner come out, I start crying," she said. "I woke up my husband, I am screaming, 'Viva Chile!'"
Krieger stood outside the Chilean restaurant Pomaire in the Theater District, clutching a Chilean flag. She said she's lived in New York City for more than 30 years, but has never felt more Chilean in her life. She says she's especially proud of the way the miners conducted themselves during two months underground. "No fights, with one boss. We have a gentleman from Bolivia; no problem. Beautiful. What a class we have given the whole world. We are the classiest country in the world," Krieger said.
Across town on Manhattan's East Side, Chileans gathered at the restaurant Barros Luco to watch more news coverage. Eliana Munafo of Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey said that, in addition to getting to see their families again, the miners can look forward to a brighter financial future. "Life for them from now on is going to be great," she said. "Because I hear even now that they have a book deal. Maybe even a movie, who knows?" Munafo, who's been in the U.S. for 40 years, said she feels proud not only of Chile, but also of the teams from her adopted country who've been involved in the rescue effort.