Sunday, December 6, 2009
Villarica, Pucón, La Unión, and Frutillar
Today was a most interesting day. Of all of the time we are spending in Chile, Thursday night was the one most in the air. We didn’t really know where we would be—perhaps in Concepción, Valdivia, or Osorno. We decided to stop in Villarica. On the way, we stopped at Los Saltos de Laja. What a beautiful site this was. I remember going there as chiquillos working in the office; so, I wanted to return.
We attempted to stay the night at a bed and breakfast run by Americans, but it was full. She gave us the name of another hotel named Hotel El Parque. It was about three miles out of town on a lake. I believe after we arrived, we decided it was a much better place and less expensive overall.
Once we arrived, Joanne and I walked down to the lake front and took a few pictures of some archaic swing sets and things. They were pretty old. Then we walked back up and headed to dinner. The people who didn’t have room for us asked us to come to dinner, which we did. It was delightful. Both Joanne and I had chuletas—pork chops—and all of the trimmings—potatoes and asparagus cream soup, which was absolutely delicious.
We rose early and drove to Pucón. I really wanted to see Volcán Villarica. It was too cloudy. Around 12:00 when we were heading to La Union and points south, the Volcán Villarica came out for a partial picture. What wonderful countryside pictures of wild flowers we took just wonderful.
We stopped in La Unión. On our way in, we saw three missionaries walking down the street. We stopped them and asked directions. They didn’t know Boris Ocampo, but they did tell us to stop at a place to make some calls. I parked the car and headed up the street. I stopped at the first Caja de Llamados I came to and tried to call Boris. He wasn’t there. For some reason, I didn’t write down his address; so, I attempted to find a place with internet, which I did. I got online and got his address. Before I left, though, I made another call to see if I could roust Boris. Fortunately, I did. He told me to meet him in the Plaza. We drove there and waited for him. Soon, he was walking toward us. He hasn’t changed a bit. Still joven, still delgadito, still great fun.
We chatted a bit and then walked to where the new capilla is or at least new to me. They had torn down the old house where we used to have meetings and built a brand new church house back in 1982. La Union used to be a stake, but because of the worthiness of so few males, they had to reduce it to a district. They are working very hard to change this.
Then we drove over to the Soto house where we lived as missionaries. Only Mr. Soto was in. He said that the señora was out with Mauricio in Osorno where she had a doctor’s appointment. We chatted for a rato and then had to live. I really wanted to stay and visit, but we needed to spend some time with Boris and his lovely bride. We spent a couple of hours with them. It was wonderful just to chat. They live in a tiny, tiny house.
We said our goodbyes at 7:15 p.m. Boris had a meeting or we would have taken them to dinner. It was hard leaving them. We promised to see each other in two years when the Concepción Temple is ready to be dedicated. I do hope we can return.
The sun was beginning to set when we pulled into Frutillar. I knew if we didn’t get pictures of the Volcán Osorno, we probably wouldn’t get to see it this trip because of the projected weather—rain and cloudy. When the clouds set in, then nothing can be seen. Lake Llanquihue was absolutely stunning with the sun lighting up the lake just a bit. I took a few pictures, but I don’t know how they will come out. We shall see. The first picture is Volcán Osorno and the second is Volcán Calbuco.