To follow up on our posting about Monday, we had a really fun time at Yoli’s parents’ house. We visited with three of Yoli’s sisters and their children. Jadzia and Ludi and Josie played well with their cousins, and Don Hector delighted in showing off his cable television channels to me. Much mate and many little breads were consumed. Yoli also brought some springerle cookies for her family to try.
Tuesday we spent the morning eating breakfast and later Yoli ran some shopping errands while I watched the girls at El Jordán.
For lunch we went down to the street corner to a place called Hot Burger. At Hot Burger, they do of course have hamburgers, but they also serve pizza, chicken, and lomito (sliced beef) sandwiches. The lomitos are what we have always loved. Years ago, Hot Burger was all outdoors, including the big griddles where they cooked the beef for the sandwiches.
But in the two years since the last time we visited, Hot Burger made a pretty huge upgrade! It’s now inside a new two- or three-story building. It has a fancy computerized ticket system, a big McDonalds-esque indoor playground, a drive thru, internet computers, and more.
With the bigger building comes bigger traffic. I couldn’t believe the number of cars parked up and down El Jordán’s street and along the larger Avenida Alemania with which it intersects. I am sure our neighbors are not happy with the traffic situation.
Thankfully, despite all the change, the food is the same: delicious.
Anyway, after lunch we got ready to go to Samaipata. It is a decent trek to get out there, the latter half of which goes through winding roads in the mountains. The road often disappears for stretches because of flooding or shifting land, etc, and then the ride gets slower and bumpy.
This time around, we found the going much longer. There were many, many construction projects along the way. One bright spot, though, is that the road through El Torno has been rebuilt, and it is much faster. Before, the highway was lined by a market through the city, and it was always a crawl to get through. Not today. But that was pretty much the only fast part of the trip.
In the mountains, the road was bad. We saw several impressive-looing new bridges under construction. And at one point we had to stop for about an hour because of a big shovel machine digging out dirt. We ran into something similar several years ago. Basically the work goes on for an hour or two hours while the road is closed. Then they open it up and let traffic flow for an hour or two. This process repeats over the course of the day.
Anyway, it was dark, and much later than we had planned when we arrived at Cabañas de Traudi, where we are staying in Samaipata. Took a while for someone to come and show us where the cabin was … they had left all the lights off on the property.
Once we got settled in, the girls had a nice time running around the yard in the dark. They found a pretty cat to play with who was friendly.
Later in the evening, Yoli composed a little story on the computer for Jadzia to read, summing up the events of the evening. I reproduce it here for your enjoyment:
Once upon a time, there were two sisters. Their names were Jadzia and Ludi, and they were very playful.
Ludi liked to eat. She always said, “I’m hungry.” Jadzia liked theater. She liked “Swan Lake,” “Beauty and the Beast,” and “The Sound of Music.”
One day Papá said, “let’s go to Samaipata.” When they got there, they watched the stars. Then Mamá made ham sandwiches. But Jadzia wanted to play Mario, and Ludi wanted to eat more.
They also had a baby sister called Josie, and a baby brother called Joseph. Josie was very tired, but she wouldn’t sleep. Joseph was tired, too, but he went to bed right away.
But Ludi said, “I’m hungry,” and Jadzia said “I want to read a story.” So, Mamá typed this story in the computer, and Jadzia read it all by herself.