Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Thanksgiving In Chile

We realize that we are about a month behind on posting our Thanksgiving adventures in Chile, but if we posted it any sooner, we would break the tradition chain. =)

Ali and I were lucky enough to get the entire week of Thanksgiving off to go down to see her parents in Chile. They moved down to Concepcion, Chile the week after we got married to serve as the mission president of the south mission. It took 12 hours to fly from Los Angeles to Santiago, then only 1 hour to fly from Santiago to Concepcion. Between the excitement of seeing Ali parents, going to a new country and the endless free entertainment on the back of the seats in front of us, we didn't sleep a wink all the way down (we even tried wearing the free eye covers the airlines gave to us. But either our heads are way too big or the eye covers were way too small, because when we took them off after 30 minutes of our sleepless efforts, we had eye cover marks imprinted on our face. Attractive, I know).

Anyway, we finally did make it down to Chile and we had such a great time. Below are some pictures of our adventures.

It seems like every city/town in Chile has a market to buy fresh fruit, grain and meat (fresh might be generous, the meat looked a little less than fresh and a little less like meat). We snapped a photo in front of the fruit section.
Concepcion takes pride in its University, which has a beautiful mural in the art building, the picture below was my favorite section of the mural (and the only section that did not include bare chested women). Not really sure why the tree has daggers in it, but it looks cool. Jolene, I am a novice when it comes to art, maybe you can help me figure out the meaning.
One of the most amazing things about Chile are the people and their genuine nature. They were incredibly nice and happy, even in their humble circumstances. We left the country with a love for the people beyond what we would have imagined. The picture below is an old Chilean man that was selling some kind of root on the street corner.

We spent the first couple of days catching up on sleep and watching Joe and Jolene in action as mission president, which was so much fun! It definitely brought back some great memories of my mission. Yea, I am the Californian wearing the sandals. Oops.

After enjoying the mission activities in Concepcion, we piled in the car and headed further south. Our destination was Pucon, a beautiful resort town with a large lake and even larger volcano (or so they say. It was overcast the entire time we were there, so we didn't even see the volcano.) I don't know what it is with me, weather and sight seeing places, but every sight seeing place I have been in the last 2 years has been obscured with rain clouds! What's up with that! Sorry Ali. =) Below are two pictures, what we saw, and what we should have seen (the latter picture taken by Joe and Jolene months earlier).

We did make the best of the bad weather and spent an entire afternoon at a hot springs. Although the water falling on us in the pictures below was the furthest away from hot, there were 17 hot pools to choose from to warm us up.

Just a picture of Joe and I hanging out in front of a restaurant we ate at looking over a lake and the boat Marlene.

On our way back from Pucon, we stopped at a gorgeous waterfall, before returning back to Concepcion.
We had such a wonderful time in Chile seeing the country and being with Ali's parents. Can't wait to go back next year for Christmas!