|Fried chicken, french fries, rice and noodles anyone? Lunch stop on the way to Santa Cruz|
At the last minute our friend, Mario called and asked if his wife, Edith could ride up to Santa Cruz with us. Of course, we said, yes, as Edith is one of our best friends here in Camiri. It was pleasant to be able to visit with her during the four hour trip up to Santa Cruz.
We stopped in the little (dirty) town of Abapo, our halfway point, to pick up a bit more food to go, when we discovered that we hadn't packed the lunch we had prepared for the road in the cooler. We decided to just eat right there and save the cars from the greasy food!
We spent the night with our friends, Marco and Sandra. The boys pitched a tent in the yard and they graciously provided two rooms for the rest of us to stay in. They live right off the Eighth Ring, so they are close by the airport. Our night was short, because we had to be at the airport around 4:30 a.m. to pick up Chris and Lisa and Co. and the little kids did not settle down until close to 11 p.m.!
When we arrived at the airport the immigration workers found us and told us that we had forgotten to write an invitation letter for each person. I was seriously hoping they wouldn't care, as in times past, but they really cared this time. They threatened that we would have to go back to immigration in the city later in the day, etc. Rudi and I did some fast talking and about one hour and a little cash to speed the process later, we had an invitation letter written and some very happy immigration workers!! I
|Waiting for Chris and Lisa to come through the magic doors|
on the right!!
|I know it is blurry, but they are all here... We left|
Adriana and Peter sleeping at Marco and Sandra's
|Singing at Marco and Sandra's house|
I will relate a funny story about Kenneth and the food. For some reason we had driven into the center of town where we buy our groceries and such. I was waiting in the van with some of the kids while Rudi ran around buying things, very standard procedure for shopping in Camiri! Anyway, we had parked in front of a table of dead, plucked, ready to buy, chickens. There they were all stacked up with their stiff legs in the air, necks draping down off the table, you get the picture! Kenneth asked me, "Do you ever buy chickens like those?" with an underlying hint of, of course you never would do that, in his tone of voice. I casually said, "What do you think you have been eating ever since you got here?" I had to give him a bad time when he didn't eat the leftover chicken dish that night and only ate the rice!!!
|That's a lot of Boohers at one table!!|
|And the adult's table! We were vastly outnumbered!|
|Practicing our Spanish song with Emily leading out.|
|Enjoying some family time in the living room!|
|Now there are some handsome boys!|
L. to R. Myles, Clancy, Clayton, Kevin, and Kenneth
In the evening some of us walked over to the Mattix's farm.
|Chris, Lisa, Rudi holding Peter, and Carla|
on the bridge at Hebron
|L. to R. Paula, Elli, Samara, Clara, and Scarlett|
|Rudi pounding the tree for our guests!|
|Yes, they did ride on the top of the car to and from the farm...|
|Getting in some music before heading to the pool!|
Can you see what Peter is doing?
|Book time with Uncle Chris|
Clayton, Ruth, and Samara on a hike over to the Farm found a plum tree and also a grapefruit tree with ripe plums. They brought them back and made lots of juice from them. It had an exotic flavor...
|Plum and grapefruit juice making... Fun!!|
|Lunch time at Cuevos|
|Have guitar will travel!|
|And like always, Boohers will have music wherever they go!|
|Swimming hole paradise!!|
|Kevin and Myles at the cross above|
|The view from the cross.|
|Kenneth pointing to something down below. Down below|
is very far down!
|Love this shot of Chris and Rudi looking tan guapo!|
|Rudi carrying David over one of the sketchy bridges on|
Another evening we had a bunch of folks over for a jam session. We fed everyone dinner and it just happened to be one of our guests birthday, so we had chocolate cake for dessert.
We were going through so many bananas Rudi bought a big box of them!!
A big highlight was driving up the Inca Huasi (a local mountain). To reach the top of the mountain you drive up ten switchbacks. It is a scary Bolivian road, so our family got to experience a little of that kind of thing. After a picnic lunch, most of the group took a big hike where there were amazing 360 views. Mark Mattix, our trusty guide, told everyone that it was just a stroll, but the girls in shorts and flip flops came back with many scratches on their legs and a different story!! Rudi and I stayed back at the cars with the little kids. Mark read us a couple of Robert Service poems to finish up our time!!
|Lunch time at the top of the Inca Huasi|
|Little Pete with a little bottle!|
|And big Kenny with a big bottle!|
|The hiking group.|
You can see the road we came up on their left.
There are ten of those switchbacks altogether!!
|Mark Mattix, our guide and the group's photographer!|
|The road up the Incahuasi...|
Of course, riding in the back of Uncle Mark's truck was always a hit. Everyone argued over who got to ride back there.
|Riding in style to go out for dinner.|
We all went out to Pollos Sucre for dinner with the Mattixes.
|Dinner at Pollos Sucre|
|Paula and Ellie|
|A little jam session at Pollos Sucre|
|Kenneth and David|
Our families shared again at a special night for a group of English speaking volunteers from Canada, the U.S. and Scotland.
|Sharing music at the Cristiana Iglesia|
|The cabins where we stayed in Samaipata.|
The name of the resort was called La Quinta Piray
|Enjoying the playground at|
|Hannah and Ruth enjoying the park also.|
|Our fearless tree climbers|
Paula and Ellie
|Inside the cabin at Quinta Piray, Samaipata|
Whenever we went out "on the town" we realized what a big group we were. Our group turned a lot of heads. After all it isn't everyday you see that many gringos in one place.
|Boohers out in search of breakfast.|
|Breakfast on the "left side"|
|Breakfast on the "right side"|
|French fries for breakfast anyone? Aunt Lisa and Peter, enjoying a|
breakfast of hamburgers and french fries.
|Hannah, Ruth, Clara, Adriana, and Scarlett|
Swimming at the pool at Quinta Piray
|Scarlett, Peter and Hannah|
|Hannah, Emily, Clancy, Clayton, and Lisa|
|Part of the Inca ruins.|
|Paula and Eliana|
|One of the lookouts at the ruins|
|Myself, Chris, Lisa, Hannah, Emily, and Clancy in front|
of the El Fuerte Inca Ruins
|Rudi and I at El Fuerte|
|The five young men once again!|
|Lunchtime at Las Cuevas|
|Clayton Rudi and Clancy made PBJs for lunch.|
|Yep, that's Kevin doing a front flip into the water at Las Cuevas! Pretty cool!!|
|Adriana our bathing beauty|
|Rudi and David taking in the falls|
|Playing in the sand|
After our busy day we headed back to the cabins to clean up and also to leave the kids and go out to dinner with just the two couples. We left the kids with, oil, bread, eggs, tomatoes and some grey smashed avocados! They made fried egg and tomato sandwiches. I have to say that our kids are awesome. They happily made themselves dinner from really nothing. I photographed the event!!!
|The three chefs|
Myles, Emily, and Clayton
|Myles preparing the tomatoes|
|Our makeshift "toaster" pot!!|
We were able to spend quite a bit of time as just couples, talking about raising our children, our marriages, dreams for the future, and everything in between. It was a real mutual time of encouragement and inspiration for us to be with Chris and Lisa. A favorite memory for me was singing hymns together one night as couples. It was quite informal and a very blessed time. It was strengthening for our faith to pray and read the Word together. Having eighteen children between us to love, raise, and nurture is a humbling task and a great challenge. The only conclusion that we unanimously came to is that we could only do this great task with the help of our Saviour and his mighty power that works in us.
|Rudi, myself, Lisa and Chris|
Rudi didn't like this picture, because he thought it made him
look fat... I didn't like the one of myself below for the same reason!!!
|The menu at La Cocina|
|And the "other" picture with our food!|
|Looking lovely in our head coverings!!|
|And our daughters, too!|
|The whole group!|
I do not know why Samara was trying to take a bite out of my head!!!
After two days in beautiful mountainous Samaipata we returned to Santa Cruz to get ready for Chris and Lisa's departure. The night before we took them to the airport we were all invited to our friends, Marco and Sandra's house for dinner. On our way there we dropped by a super uptown shopping mall to show them the ritzier side of Santa Cruz. On our way back to the car Chris and around seven of the children took the elevator down to the level we were parked at in the parking garage, because the escalator was broken down. I noticed that their elevator did not come back up from -2 and since neither elevator opened for quite some time the rest of the group decided to take the broken escalator down. Even when we got down to the car, the elevators were still stuck at where they had been when we decided to take the escalator. We also had parked at -1 not -2, so I headed off to find the rest of the group. I met them coming up the escalators and all of them were excitedly telling us about how their elevator had broken down and they had to force the door open and jump down about eight inches to get out. Emily said that the lights were flickering inside and both she and Chris noticed that it the oxygen was running low. In fact they had just been discussing the what ifs of an elevator failure! I didn't want to think about "what ifs" on that one. If given the option I take the stairs rather than elevators here, now I know why!! We were all very relieved to hear that they had disembarked safely!
|Can you spot the gringos?|
Chris and Emily ordering drinks from the Starbucks at the
mall in Santa Cruz.
All too soon it was time for them to head back to the U.S. We did a few more pictures in the airport, prayed together, and said our final goodbyes.
|Samara and David at the airport|
|The whole crew of kids, minus Ellie|
|Farewell, beloved family!|
We love you all and look forward to our next special time together! Next time let's do Ukraine and Poland together, with Norway thrown in for kicks!!! Thank you for braving the trip and coming down to South America!!
Emily did a really nice blog and video with a lot more pictures that I think you will enjoy. Click here to see it.