Friday, February 28, 2014

Saturday, February 8

After the bad night I had last night, I woke up early to go for a run along the highway. It was absolutely gorgeous running along the side of the huge river Calle Calle with the trees on either side in the fresh morning air. Then I showered in the camping with hot water, got dressed and ready, and folded up all the sleeping bags and blankets and reilflated the mattresses while Nancy prepared breakfast. Then we all walked out to the highway and took the micro into Valdivia. We went to Entrelagos chocolate factory and had some ice cream, and then went to the river and walked along the side.
We saw a guy playing the harp and stopped to listen, then we walked through the feria artesenal and I bought a keychain (and so started the tradition of buying key chains for my Rotary jacket of all the cities we go to), then we kept walking until we found a giant sea lion lying along the fence by the river almost close enough to touch. At 2, we had to go to the dock to catch the boat tour we had signed up for. We sat in an elegant dining room and had a fancy lunch of salmon while cruising down the Rio Valdivia.
Our first stop was in Isla Corral, where we went to a Spanish fort and saw an act of when the Chilean army took over the fort from the Spanish, complete with cannons and people running around in uniform.
Our next boat stop was on Isla Mancera where we toured another fort. We went into the underground prison, and although it was cool to see where the prisoners were kept, the giant spiders along the walls really grossed me out. We were all shocked to learn that the island had only 27 permanent inhabitants. After we got back on the boat, there was tea and pie waiting for us on the table. After we ate, a “DJ” came in and started playing music and asking everyone where they were from. When they found out that I was from the US, everyone got really excited and they named me “La Reina del Barco Calle Calle” and made me stand up and dance cumbia with Eric in front of everyone. I’m getting used to dancing in front of large groups of people, so it really wasn’t at all embarrassing and actually kind of fun. After we got off the boat, we caught the micro back to the camping, which was called Camping Cutipay. Then we drove into Valdivia in the car to buy a new mattress that wouldn’t deflate on us. Monse, Nancy, and I would sleep on the big new mattress in one tent and Maxi and Eric on small mattress in individual tents. When we got back to the camping we had to inflate all the mattresses and although it was really cold outside, by the time we finished I was stripped down to my short sleeved shirt and I was sweating. Nancy cooked dinner of spaghetti, tortillas, salad, and soup, and we sat around talking until like 12:30.

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