We knew this day would come, but it came more quickly than we expected. I was cleaning out the apartment--which was surprisingly full of stuff as small as it was--and Elder Kennington was in the process of selling our Outback with the help of Hno. Parra, our resident legal expert.
The 51st annual Feria Concepcion had begun, so we managed to find time to attend. I bought a twin of Hermana Pendley's lapis lazuli ring I had been coveting, and Elder Kennington found these wonderful wall hangings that will forever remind us of rural Chile. The Almacen--storehouse--on the left had a space left blank for personalization, so when the artisan asked Elder K. what name he wanted painted in, Elder K. said, naturally, "Almacen del Obispo," the Bishop's Storehouse.
We wanted to say personal goodbyes to families that mean a lot to us. We visited the mother and grandmother of our missionary sister in Peru, along with her little nephew Victor, who is now a laughing baby with long and enviable pestañas--eyelashes.
It was hard to say goodbye to the Conejos. We gave them an electric fan--ventilador--from our apartment, which their little boys found entertaining and a welcome relief on the warm Chilean summer day. We pray for the Conejos to have everything they need to raise and take care of their family.
It was even harder to take leave of Andrea, Manuel and Manuelito, who have become very dear friends. They have been a blessing in our lives and we are better people because of them.
It wasn't until Tuesday morning, the day we were to fly out of Concepcion, that Elder Kennington finished the trámite--legal paperwork--to sell the Outback to a deserving member. The Kauers and Pendleys picked us up with all our luggage, and we were met at the airport by the Arringtons, who we were able to say goodbye to. I didn't get a picture of Concepcion since there was fog, but I did get this shot of Santiago as we were landing after the first leg of our flight.
The night flight from Santiago to Atlanta was 10 hours. We were exhausted and able to sleep some. We had to go through agricultural customs because Elder K. still had three Washington apples he bought in Concepcion. The picture above is our flight taking off out of Atlanta, Georgia.
During the four-hour flight, we passed over the snow-capped Rocky Mountains somewhere in Colorado. Mighty as they are, they are not the Andes.
Our last leg of the journey, flying out over Logan, Utah.
We knew we were getting close to our destination when we saw the Teton Mountain range in the distance. Our Toyota 4Runner had been taken care of by our daughter Carrie and her husband Jon, who live in Idaho Falls with their four children, so we landed there first.
Circling over Rexburg and Brigham Young University Idaho.
Another shot of the Tetons from the circling plane.
Descending over snowy, sunny, spread-out Idaho Falls. We had a wonderful five-day visit with Carrie's family, got over a little jet lag, started speaking English again, and had to borrow jackets and mittens for the unaccustomed frosty weather.