Bienvenidos! I've missed you, my dearest friends. My absence has been fraught with activity, though: besides the usual holiday hubbub, I took a completely amazing trip to Chile. I sort of don't know where to start, I feel like I couldn't describe it without writing a a really boring book. But here are some highlights:
:: Did you know that Chile, on South America's Pacific Coast, is east of the east coast of the United States? It's two hours later there.
:: It's summer in Chile now, and the weather is warm and dry, in the 80s during the day and cool at night.
:: The wedding which was the impetus for our trip took place on the outskirts of Santiago on New Year's Eve. The bride and groom were glowing (really!) and performed the ceremony in Spanish, French and English for the benefit of their international families and guests. The bride's 97 year-old grandmother came from Nice and instantly bonded with the groom's 90 year-old Chilean grandmother. Then we danced outside under the stars until three in the morning.
:: Chile has a wonderful law that all of its thousands of miles of coastline are public property, and it's stunningly beautiful, with sandy beaches, dramatic cliffs, and mountains that look like they'll slide right into the sea.
:: 20 adults can share a beach house for five days in something closely resembling harmony.
:: Fresh fish, delicious fruits and vegetables, and excellent Chilean wine... mmmm.
:: The aforementioned 20 adults are an amazing group of people: artists, architects, philosophers, writers, human rights lawyers, designers, filmmakers, and so on. Impromptu dance parties, pranks, and laughter abounded.