Monday, September 25, 2006

My trip

I will apologize for the shortness of this blog since it should cover enough material for a short book, but I have little time to write it...
The trip overall had a lot of ups and a lot of downs...
Rachel and Alison started the trip thursday night and headed towards Pucon where AShlee and I met them late Saturday night. Ihave to admit that there are few things I love more than traveling with Ashlee. After all our random trips together (day trips to Santa Barbara, the summer in New Jersey, weekends in New York and Chicago) we have found it easy to travel together.
Anyways we met up with Rachel and Alison and the next morning got back on a bus headed for Valdivia. As soon as our bus crossed the little bridge into Valdivia I decided that I was really going to like this town. The bus terminal was settled nicely next to the river and along a cement path that along along the river where families rollerskating, couples riding bikes, and other Valdivianos just enjoying a stroll in the early afternoon sun. It was precious!
We found a hostel after a little trouble and although it wasn't anything special it reminded of my home in La Serena and I felt comfortable there. The hostel owner told us to go to the Botanical Gardens that are behind the university in town. So we made it to the university and after walking around lost for a while and seeing nothing that looked like botanical gardens, we decided to off road it a little. We started walking through some thick bush and before you knew it we were hiking along a small stream trying to find some way out of the bush. We saw some grassy field on the other side of a stream and followed the stream looking for a way to cross without killing ourselves (or really just getting very dirty). We made it over the stream and began to wander in these hige green fields... needless to say my green loving friend Rachel was quiet happy. We were dissapointed that we never found the botanical garden, but this green grassy field seemed nice enough. After wandering the fields for some time we found a way out the area and as we were leaving we noticed a sign hung above an entrance into the area we were just in. It read Jardin Botanical (botanical garden). Yes, thats right folks, we had been in the garden the whole time and not known it.
That night we went to a cute bar next door to our hostel and seeing as we arrived at 7:45 and they opened to the public at 8, and the live music didn't start until midnight, we sat for a LONG time and talked over yummy drinks and a plate or two of fries with a incredible curry peanut sauce on it. At about 2am Ashlee and I headed home and left Rachel and Alison to enjoy the scene for a while longer. When we arrived to our room it was so cold that we just sat there not able to move for the first few minutes. Then slowly we began the process of getting ready for bed... which of cource included a viewing of Jennifer Lopez's movie Enough on tv before we went to sleep.

more to come...

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Just a quick hello

Hello all!
This is just a quick hello to say that I am still on the road and doing well. We have now visited Pucon which is a little lake town that has all the charm of Lake Tahoe, Valdivia where we ate TONS of Chileno comida (food) and visited a great beer factory, and now Chiloe where we are seeing more green than we cna handle... more to come soon!

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Going on a vacation

One of the things I love about my job is the fact that vacations come very easily. For example this week. Tuesday is Chilean Independence Day and while most adults make it a four or five day weekend of partying, kids have the whole week off from school. So Ashlee, Rachel, Alison, and I are off to travel for the week. Rachel adn Alison left on Thursday and Ashlee and I are meeting them today. We will start off in Pucon which is like Lake Tahoe, then on to Valdivia which is an old port city, then Chiloe an island full of old school culture, and finally we will cross the Lake district into Argentina and visit the charming city of Bariloche. All in all we will spend a little over a week travelling. Ashlee and I are leaving in afew hours for our 10 hour bus trip to Pucon, but no need to worry baout boredom... I have packed plenty of D.B.Knox to tide me over... ahhh, life is good indeed!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006











Here are some random photos that I found and uploaded from my time in the States... more to come at some point in the future...



Monday, September 11, 2006

SUNDAY

Church! I did my sunday morning ritual of going to the Radisson and sitting in the lobby before church and reading my bible. I always wonder what the hotel reception people think of me since every sunday this random gringa shows up and just sits in their lobby for a few hours or so. Anyways, after the service, the church got together for a big potluck/picnic. The back room was set up with long tables that stretched across the room and all 100 of us squeezed in the room to break bread literally. Although it was a little chaotic at first, to see the whole church sitting around together eating lunch and talking and laughing, was such a blessing and i can only imagine that this was how the early church felt in its small house churches.
I came home from church and after a sweet nap on the couch, AShlee and I headed over to Sammy's house for a meeting. The meeting was about Jovindencia and on top of the fact that they served us rootbeer which I haven't had for a year, the meeting accomplished a lot. I feel like although the group is young (Ashlee and I are the oldest), we all really care about the group and want to see God work in it. We got through a lot during the meeting and afterwards Sam showed me his collection of books including his new Goldsworthy book on prayer (okay probably NONE of the readers care or even know who Goldsworthy is but shameless plug: read Gospel and Kingdom, just do it, trust me, you won't regret it!). Anyways, all that said and done... AShlee and I headed home and were greeted with freshly made empanadas. Thanks Seba!

SATURDAY

Saturday was a day of cleaning up after the party and just relaxing. Rachel and I watched some TV and basically didn't leave the house until around 7pm.
At 7 we all (meaning Rachie, Ashlee, Seba, and I who were joined by Rocky, a house friend) went to our favorite restaurant, Soul of the Orient. This place serves Chinese, Japanese, and Thai food. All while playing a light and fluffy Chinese song on repeat for the whole 2 hours you sit there. After dinner, Ashlee and Rachie returned to the house and Seba and i went on a mission to find the movie Anchorman. I have never seen it but after hearing so much about it, I had my heart set on watching it. We called the peeps (meaning Allison, Sam, Jason, and Mely) and found the movie.
I think if I were living in the US I would know what "normal" behavior is for someone my age. But I don't. I can't imagine that many college graduates have little movies nights like we do. I mean, maybe they do and that is totally the norm for 23 year olds. But it sometimes feels like I am in high school, or at least my freshman year of college. But I am not complaining. If Chile has taught me anything about growing up, it is that growing up too fast is overrated. That it is okay to be in that high school type of phase for a little longer.
Anyways, after the movie, conversations started in little groups and Sam and Mely and I began talking about relationships and our pasts. For those of you who were in Bible study with me, yes, I did pull out the non negotables, but i didn't get quite as far as the 5 steps to healthy emotional integrity... that is saved for the next time.

FRIDAY

Por fin llegamos al viernes... Out in Renca, the kids were fiesty! Two kids were playing and one got hit pretty hard and actaulyl started bleeding in his mouth. We found the source of blood was his tongue that he bit when he was hit. After crying for a minute or two, he was back to complete rowdiness with the other kids. I don't know if there was extra sugar in the Kool Aid or what, but they were energized!
I got home and Rachie and i began the clean up and set up process for our big party tonight. It was Silvias Birthday party with a splash of a welcome home party for Timo. All of youth group plus more were invited.
We ran off to youth group at 7 and got there late... again!
After youth group the party started and I have to admit that this party is SO much more my style that the party last week. This party, although it included alcohol, it was drunk free. Also, for the most part we all knew each other, so it was easy for the groups to mix around and it didn't feel cliquish (whao, don't ask me about the spelling there!). We had ice cream and cupcakes and lots of cookies. At the end of the night it was the "usual" crowd: My roommates, of course, Sammy, Jason, and Nathan. We sat around, Jason playing songs on the guitar for everyone to sing slong to, Rachel and Ashlee chiding him for not knowing James Taylor, Sam and I discussing some church matter, and Seba sitting on the couch listening to (probably without understanding) the cloud of English around him.
Anyways the boys left and we got to bed at a fairly decent hour for a friday night. It was not much later than 4 am.

THURSDAY

I had a full day that day. Work at CEP (the library), and then class with my hippy upperclass lawyer, then back home for a quick change of costumes, and off to the mountains to have class with the triplets I adore. It was a good day.

WEDNESDAY

Work, class, babysitting... exciting day!

TUESDAY

Feeling a little better, but still taking it easy.
Our tuesday night Bible study that has all good intentions is difficult to get off the ground. It feels too heavy to lift. Does that mean that I am trying to lift it on my own? Does that mean that I think it is bigger than it really is? Well, in any case, it is slow to go.

MONDAY

Still sick, spent the day in bed...

Sunday, September 03, 2006

sick

I am sorry for the lack of blogs but I am sick. I started feeling a little sick earlier this week but just ignored it and soon found myself with avery high fever crying in the middle of youth group`(I tend to cry when i am sick).
So I spent from friday night till this morning in bed. Friday night was the going away party for Birgit at our house and our house had at least 35 people over. And thena ll day saturday i was just moping in bed... I actually got to read a book my dad gave me (which I almost finished). And today I got out of bed for church, and was even able to make it through a lunch testimony time that our youth group planned. Every first sunday of the month we are going to eat together and one person will share their testimony. The idea is to have one person share each month adn slowly but surely we will build some more community and accountability in our group. So this week was our first time doing this, and I was the person to share. I still felt quite sick, but everyone in the group spoke English so I didn't have to give my testimony in Spanish. It was a good time. The group that went today was generally the leaders and the gringos, and we tend to get along fairly well. I feel really blessed to have these guys in my life and to get to be a part of this church and The Church in Santiago. So yes, I feel sick, but blessed. Very sick, and extremely blessed.