Saturday, October 4, 2014

Llamas, Cable Cars, and a Gorgeous Mountain

We were hoping for a much better night than the first, but Alex simply cannot sleep here for some reason.  Maybe it's the altitude, or the fact that she won't wear socks to bed or keep her covers on, and so she freezes at night.  Possibly, it's a combination of the two. She went to sleep insanely late last night, and was up in the wee hours of the morning again coughing, tossing, and turning.  We assumed she would sleep super late into the morning.  Wrong!  She got up earlier than she has in months, as did the other two kids.  Due to her intense crankiness, we put Alex in Lilly Grace's bed to try to go back to sleep while the older two hopped in bed with us and watched Finding Nemo.

Brent got out of bed first and made fried eggs for himself and the children.  It was such a treat and so kind of Brent to cook, which is not easy in our little kitchen here.  We then cleaned the kitchen and got ready for the day.  We bundled up because we were planning on going to Monserrate - the mountain in the middle of town.  Bogota is on a plateau of sorts, and is mainly flat, but is 8500 hundred feet above sea level.  The top of the mountain is roughly 10,500 feet, so we were prepared for cool weather.

It was a windy road getting to the mountain.  Poor Lilly Grace's face was draining of color, and she kept telling us she didn't feel well.  We arrived at our destination, and within minutes the poor child threw up.  Immediately, she said she was fine.  We got a snack and drink from a local street vender.  It was about $1.50 for a bottled water and 6 cookies.  Then, the kids all got to sit on a llama named Lucas, which they thought was amazing! We were even able to get a family photo with Lucas.

Then we all boarded a cable car and made the steep incline up the mountain.  It was incredible seeing not only the gorgeous mountain, but the entire city of Bogota as we ascended.  It is ginormous, and is a city of 8 million people, hence the heinous traffic.  The top of the mountain is where an old monastery is located, and many gorgeous sculptures of the days leading up to the crucifixion, Jesus dying on the cross, and the resurrection.  The sculptures are amidst gorgeous gardens.  The area was built hundreds of years ago and truly is remarkable. 

We meandered through a bizarre where venders were selling all sorts of trinkets, snacks, clothes, and souvenirs.  It was fascinating. Then we went through a market where every vendor was selling the exact same thing.  Brent thought it looked great, I was repulsed.  He is a far more adventurous eater than I am.  There were freshly stuffed sausages, whole chickens, plantains stuffed with mozzarella and something purple, soups, and a few other options.  It smelled the same way as the lab smelled in high school when we dissected frogs, rats, and sheep eyes.  It wasn't appetizing in the least, but those vendors were certainly proud of their food. 

We settled for a cafe that had traditional Colombian food and some more simple options.  Brent had eggs, rice, pulled pork, salsa, and beans.  The kids and I had hamburgers.  I may have mentioned this a few dozen times, but I can't wait for American food!  True, hamburgers are pretty American, but I miss American hamburgers and my stomach is growling right now thinking about what all I want to eat when we get home.  Brent and I already have a childless date planned for our favorite restaurant, Garrett's. 

After we finished eating, we walked around the top of the mountain some more.  We then took a funicular down the mountain.  This is basically a rail car that follows a track, but is guided by a cable since it is on such a steep incline.  It reminded me of a cable car that is on the ground instead of suspended in the air.  It truly was an amazing experience, and is a must-do for anybody that finds themselves in Bogota.  Surprisingly and rarely, it was a clear day so the views were marvelous.  If our internet wasn't heinous, I would post pictures, but that'll have to wait until we are back in America.

We got home and all five of us slept.  Samuel and Alex took super long, much needed naps.  I tried, but the boys playing soccer in the hallway and the car alarm that went off for an hour made it difficult.  Sweet home, quiet, Pike Road is going to feel like heaven.  Brent and I wonder what Samuel is going to think about living in a house, not an apartment, having his own back yard, and not hearing sirens, horns, and car alarms all day long. 

We were able to FaceTime with several folks this evening.  The kids were able to talk to both sets of grandparents, Uncle Travis and Aunt Kelly, Uncle Michael and Aunt Lindsey, and Beth Stanley - our social worker back home.  It was nice to see such precious faces, and for Samuel to meet the person who helped us every step of the way to bring him into our wild family. 

Now, the kids are in bed and Brent and I are watching the Auburn - LSU game.  The Alabama game was very sad, but at least Auburn is beating LSU!  Samuel and Lilly Grace enjoyed watching parts of both games with Brent, and they are looking forward to going to an Auburn game together soon after we are home.  As you can see, we have a lot of plans for when we return to the states.  We can't wait to introduce Samuel to all the south has to offer, all the fun and excitement of fall, and of course to all the friends and family that have prayed for and loved him since before he was officially in our family.

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