Friday, August 10, 2007

Quick Update from Cali...

So, it´s actually early Friday morning in Cali, Colombia. It´s been almost a week since we first arrived and it´s hard to believe we´ve only got 4 days left before we head back to Miami.

Our Internet connection at the appartment is ´muy lento´ (slow) so I´m going to forgoe uploading any more pictures until we can get to a faster connection but believe me we´ve got some great ones. Once we can upload the pictures and videos we´ll do some more details posts but for now let´s catch everybody up to today.

Day 2 - Saturday
So after an exciting night and a quick introduction to Colombian food the night before we packed up the cars and headed out for the day with our hosts Rafael and Claudia and Nayibe´s Tio´s (uncles)and grandma. I´m not sure if they didn´t tell us or I didn´t understand what we were doing but I totally prepared wrong for the day´s outing. I expected to hang out in town, drink some coffee, talk and eat some more great food. But instead we drove about 40 miles outside of the city (driving in the city was great by the way... but I´ll save my traffic experiences for another post), into the Colombian mountains to an ecologial preserve called ´Nirvana´, where we hiked a couple of kilometers up the mountian to get an incredible view of the Cauca Valley and even more Colombian mountains. I must say it was breath taking... and not just because I had to carry Josiah.

When we returned the cars they were nicely parked in front of this beautifull restaurant perched on the hillside where we had an incredible dinner of Truche Arcoiris (rainbow trout). Did I mention that they took our order before we left for the hike and caught the fish for us while we were gone... I´ll upload a picture later.

Anyway it was an incredible day.

Side note - it´s getting late so the next items will be shorter and I´ll fill them in later.

Day 3 - Sunday (Yacu and Dapa)
Sunday it was time to do someting fun for the kids so we went to a really large petting zoo outside of town call Yacu where the boys got to pet everything from zera to water bufallo, milk a cow and give a baby pig a bottle. It was a lot of fun and the weather was great. I haven´t missed the Boise heat at all.

After that we went to lunch at a little town called Dapa halfway up the mountain range on the other side of the valley. We had lunch with another amazing view of the city. The kids we wild but afterwards they got to play on one of the coolest playground´s I´ve ever seen perched on the side of the mountain.

We then visited Raphael and Claudia´s finca (cabin/farm) a little farther up the mountian and checked out their banana and mango trees.. among others. One the way back we stopped a another ecologicia preserver... they´re kind of like national forests or state parks back home... and went on a Canopy right. Canopy is the term they use here for zip lines. I spend a couple of hour travel across 1 km of zip line through the tree tops and across the mountain side. It was amazing. Javier though dad was a little crazy and Jojo was mad because it couldn´t come along.

Day 4 - Monday

I don´t remember a lot about Monday. I think we just tried to recover and spend sometime visiting with Nayibe´s grandma Saydee (not the one from Saturday). There´s more stories here but I´ll save those for later.

Day 5 - Tuesday

One Tuesday Claudia and Rapheal took the day of so that Rapheal could take me Parapenting (I think that´s how it´s spell. In the states we call it para sailing. You know where you running with a parachute off of a mountain. Again, it was a lot of fun. Nayibe saw her Abuela who gave her some cooking lessons (Abuela can throw it down!) Her Tio Alexander took the boys to a park and taught then some Spanish they had a good time.

Day 6 - Wednesday
We spent the afternoon at Nayibe´s other Granda´s house... yes she has three of them down here and then got a tour of the town with her cousin Auro Rosa. It was great to see them and part of the city. Oh, and Javier had his favorite dinner yet at this placed called ´Crepes & Waffles´down town. They had icecream on top and everything it was great.

Day 7 - Thursday
Today, our big item was to go visit the Oscar Scarpetta Orphanage with Nayibe´s cousin Auro Rosa. Sadly, the older kid, above 2, are out of town at a finca for the summer but we had a god time playing and sharing some toys with the younger kids. We were there for about an hour before the kids had to eat their soupita and take a nap. Come to find out this is a provinical orphange, only meant to hold kids temporarily who have been abused or fallen on some other hardship. The sisters did tell us about another place to try and visit and we plan on checking it out on Saturday.

To top it off we had a dinner outside by the river downtown that consisted of nothing but empanades... I thought I was in heaven... and then Jojo screamed, ¨Dada... bike!¨ He loves all the motorcycles around here.

Anyway, that´s a quick wrap up. The boys are doing really well. Josiah, is trying to kiss all the little girls and is saying some really funning Spanish words. In general he´s just being his crazy self.

Javier is adjusting well to the food and finally starting to enjoy speaking in Spanish after watching enough Spanish cartoons. We´ll have to see if we can get these channels when we get back home.

Nayibe is busy catching up with all here family down here and having some good ol´home style food. There´s an incredible amount of family down here and it´s been great. She´s getting here hair and nails done tommorrow so she´ll be all Calienan (a person who´s from Cali).

Me... have you read this post! I´ve been throwing myself off mountains this place is great! Honestly though, the people here have been great and not just the family. I´ll post more about the people later but it´s and an incredible culture and the world is definitely flatter than I expected.


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