22 October 2016

So why were we on a remote island in the middle of the Pacific for the past two weeks?

Erwan needed some fish... and not the delicious fresh tuna that we made into ceviche, tartar, and curry... no, the tiny little colorful endemics that can only be found in Rapa Nui. His current research project is devoted to understanding how these fish have ended up in Easter Island. So, we grit our teeth and signed up for two weeks in paradise. 

After some snafus with paperwork, permits, and the Chilean Navy, we finally sorted out the tramites so that the divers could get in the water and start hunting. Meanwhile, I (not diving due to the growing babe inside of me) made friends with fishermen and snorkeled in Hanga Roa's protected coastal pools. 

All in all, the trip was a success! Last weekend we returned to Valdivia with nice sun tans and a cooler full of frozen fish!

planning the first dive
processing the samples

11 October 2016

We have been in Rapa Nui for the past ten days and still have another half a week to go before we return home! Life is rough, let me tell you. While we are here for work, we have had ample time to explore this beautiful island in the middle of the Pacific. More to come on all of that in a bit... in the meantime enjoy a piña colada for me!

24 September 2016

Here are some final photos from the weekend in Rupanco. 

After constant rain all day on Saturday, we woke up Sunday morning to clear blue skies. Southern Chile is so strange in that way, one moment its bleak and gray as Medieval England, the next moment its a sparkling emerald. The sun seemed to motivate everyone out of their slumber, and soon the kitchen was full of bodies bustling about to prepare all sorts of goodies for breakfast. Following the southern tradition, we had a full spread complete with farm-fresh eggs, bread, cheese, toppings of all sorts, and even a tropical-inspired smoothie. With bellies full, we embarked upon the day like one big family, ready to take a peak into the lake and awe at the surrounding volcanoes. 

Thanks everyone for such a great time!

Christian, ever with a net!
Maryse finding treasures...
Happy Lobo!
baby nalca sprouting this Spring!
girls having fun!

Thank you Erwan for your photos (9,15,16)!!

19 September 2016

 While Pablo is in Iguazu, Argentina this week for a conference, I went on a weekend get-a-way with friends! 

On Saturday, we headed out to Lago Rupanco to celebrate Chilean Independence Day at the lake. With it being early spring, Saturday was chilly and rainy, but that didn't stop us from exploring, having a barbecue, and enjoying the time together. We made choripans and admired native trees, we heated up the wood-burning hot tub, and threw rocks into the lake for the dogs. Though I missed Pablo, I had a wonderful weekend with friends!

there's a wolf in the water!!

stir that hot tub!

11 September 2016

Spring has sprung!

The weather is now nice more often than not. We still have days or even weeks of rain and cold temperatures, but we also have more and more sunny warm days. From now until March, the frequency of nice days will just keep increasing... and with that, so will the number of social gatherings! 

Last weekend we took advantage of a particularly spectacular Sunday and hosted our first ever Sancocho. While the typical nice-weather food in Chile is barbecue, we thought that we would make homage to Pablo's culture by serving this typical colombian soup. We borrowed an industrial sized pot from some friends, scoured Valdivia for yucca and fresh corn, and made a wood-burning fire while we enjoyed the warm spring sunshine. The soup was delicious, though I will admit, no Sancocho will beat the one we enjoyed the day after our wedding. The day was wonderful, though. I can't wait for more to come!

neighborhood we are hoping to move to!
dogs are also loving the sun!
belly is getting bigger!
que cocinero tan hermoso!
Sancocho trimmings

 practicing with baby Vigo!
 another recent gathering at Erwan and Vale's house
 who knew a two year old could be so skeptical
above the clouds in Chavelita