Saturday, May 23, 2015

South America Adventure - May 23 - June 24

Another adventure is nearly upon us! This time to South America!  Cal & I have not been on this Continent so everything will be new.  Our Spanish & Portuguese language skills are basically nil! So communication could be/will be interesting, but there are more and more people speaking English.   

The idea for this adventure all began about a year ago, when a gal in one of the Iowa City Rotary Clubs was asking for support for a water project in Paraguay, just across the border from Argentina.   This gal, Argentinian by birth, also said she wanted to plan a trip for Iowa Rotarians to go visit the project upon completion.  Well that time is now!  Plus the Rotary International Convention is being held in Brazil this June and our organizing gal wanted to attend the Convention.  In actuality, of the total group from Iowa going to visit the Water Project, she is the only one attending the International Convention. (It is expensive event and we decided to not go this year).  When we travel this distance, we prefer to stay for a period of time, thus the plans are for a total of 4 weeks.

When thinking of South America we thought of our connections.  First, on the list was the Brazilian Exchange student who lived with us in 1994-95, plus an Argentinian Exchange student for whom I was her counselor (however we had lost contact with her – but after persistence, we did locate her, in her home town –thank goodness we still had her business card from 1999-00). Also 2 years ago we hosted a Rotarian from Chile who insisted we must visit Chile if we ever get to South America.  So we began planning and scheduling!  Along the way we learned that one of Cal’s former students lives in Buenos Aires, Argentina.  We will be having dinner with her and her husband one of the nights we are in Buenos Aires.  

We are leaving Mt Pleasant Saturday, May 23, 2015, flying from Cedar Rapids, Iowa to Santiago, Chile via Dallas/Ft Worth, arriving there Sunday morning.  It will be one of those dreaded overnight flights!!  On this trip we will not be dealing with the time zone changes which will be nice, however, we will be leaving warmer spring/summer weather in Iowa for cooler fall/winter weather in South America, as well as leaving the longer daylight hours of spring and summer days for the shorter fall and winter days in South America.  The cooler weather was taken into consideration while packing our bags.  Regarding luggage, we have restricted limits on our in country flights of 33 pounds! 

For us to be gone a month we not only plan the trip, but it takes planning to be gone for a month from our responsibilities here at home.  Things have fallen together and tomorrow after giving the lawn a final mow, we will be heading to the airport for this next adventure. 

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