Monday, May 30, 2011

Funny Confession

I am borrowing a friend's funny confession concept to share the following funny confession: We just got a new fridge, much roomier than our old one and I was more than happy to fill the freezer door as follows:

Yes, those are 5 pints of Haagen Dazs ice cream! I bought them in the "Zona Franca" which has an unreliable and unpredictable inventory, so when they have something I like (and at a very reasonable price of $2.75USD at today's exchange rate) I have to stock up.
Other recent stock up items include:
Chex Mix (I won't share how many bags I bought...)
Stuffing Mix (who could possibly be in the market for this besides me and the handful of other Americans here?)
Cranberry Juice
Frozen Brussel Sprouts (nothing to feel guilt about here!)
Frosted Mini Wheats

And for Easter I also indulged in Reese's Peanut butter Eggs and Peeps- the peanut butter eggs because I love them and Peeps out of some kind of patriotic obligation even though I haven't eaten them yet.

All of the above mentioned products are hard to come by in Chile, some of them I have never seen, even in Santiago. So I feel justified in my grocery shopaholic tendencies, especially after a year and a half in Porvenir. Well either that or I can blame it on those pregnancy cravings, right??

Thursday, May 19, 2011

More Butcher Fun Facts

I have reported previously on this blog about the details of going to the butcher in Porvenir. Today I went for the first time in Punta Arenas. Since arriving here, I had been buying my meat at the big grocery stores mostly because of convenience although it really didn't make much sense. The meat I was buying was from Uruguay with who knows what kind of cow (free range or feedlot?) or what chemicals (antibiotics?) when instead, the local meat (as I have mentioned many times) is from cows who live in pastures and are not jacked up on antibiotics. So, today I finally took the time to go to the butcher. In Punta Arenas, all of my Porvenir butcher fun facts still apply, but I learned about two purchases I can make which I previously was unaware of:

An entire lamb's head for $1 (yes, that's one US dollar).
Half of a cow for $3.65 a pound (must order ahead of time).

My thoughts:
Does the lamb head come with everything inside - eyes, brains, etc...? One dollar seems mighty cheap.
Which half of the cow is it- front, back, top or bottom?

Bon appetit!

Rainy Day Fun

This probably would not be my outfit of choice for backyard puddle jumping on a raining day in Patagonia but Olivia sure was content!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Porvenir Reminders

Since Fernando still spends the majority of each week in Porvenir and since he loves taking pictures, I have lots more images of the little town at the end of the earth to share. Here are some recent ones:

The dolphins! Still swimming strong next to the ferry:

View from the ferry, crossing early one morning:

View of the bay in Porvenir, looking towards the fishery with the main land in the background (so close yet so far away....):

Boat in the bay, Porvenir in the background (those are the kind of rustic wooden boats they use to catch the king crab by the way):

A fisherman fixing up his boat:

And my favorite one, boats in the bay on a day with NO WIND!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

La Cueva del Milodon

One of the tourist attractions near Puerto Natales is a big cave with a replica of a ground sloth (sounds nicer in Spanish: milodon) which was discovered at the end of the nineteenth century and dates back to prehistoric times. Olivia had never been to a cave before, nor seen a ground sloth (who has?) so was quite excited to see the "bear dinosaur" in the cave.

View from within the cave:

Looking at the replica:

Afterwards we went to a cafe that had a replica of the replica carved in wood. Olivia LOVED it, probably because it was just the right size for her. As Fernando and I slowly savored our coffees (remember, a year and a half in Porvenir without a cafe....) she stayed with the "bear dinosaur" that she quickly named "Penny." I have no idea where she got the name but by the end of our coffee session, she was talking to the creature saying, "I love you, Penny."

Now over two weeks later, she still gets teary eyed talking about how much she misses Penny!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Easter in Puerto Natales

So I am a little late in posting this but here goes. For the long Easter weekend we drove to Puerto Natales, which is the little town on the way to the Torres del Paine National Park. It pretty much rained all weekend and when it wasn't raining, it was super super windy (no surprises there...). But we had a nice time, especially with the fall colors on the trees. Since Porvenir doesn't have many trees, we never really had a fall last year.

On the road to Puerto Natales:

View along the water in Puerto Natales

A condor we saw fly very close by:

Up close:

Road near Puerto Natales

Snow on the mountains, fall trees in the foreground:

Olivia making friends:

Because of the rain and wind, we basically stayed inside a lot which meant restaurant and cafe hopping. It was fun! And the best part: no ferry crossing to get home :)