Monday, February 3, 2014

Here we are!

OK, so internet time is hard to come by in Argentina.  It turns out many things can be hard to come by sometimes.   We are in the city of Rio Gallegos.  It is the furthest south city on the continent.  There are cities further south but they are on islands.  We are about 50 miles north of the Strait of Magellan.  There have been other couples here in the distant past but it has been at least 20 years since there was a senior couple here.   We know that because one of the members started piano lessons with a couple.   He is now a full time music teacher.   I hope we can have that kind of impact and I hope that couple knows that what they did blessed someone's life immensely.

Moving as a senior missionary couple into a new area is a lot like opening a new area.  Even though we have missionaries and members here, there was no place for us to live and no furniture for it once we found it.   We have finally found a place and have at least the necessary things to get by.   We are supposed to acquire a few more things but we will probably take our time and try to get the best deals that we can.  Shopping for things for the apartment does give us lots of opportunities to talk to the shop keepers and explain to them why we are moving here.   We are also figuring out how we can do the Lord's work here.  We are kind of feeling our way along on that one.   We are here to support the members and leaders and they are not yet sure what we can do to support them.   We are doing visits to both active and less active members and helping the missionaries with some of their lessons as well.  

Just a little bit about Patagonia.   Most of Patagonia is a flat, dry, plain area.   There are regions that are close to the mountains and those are the areas that you see in the pictures.   Most of the rest is covered in low growth that doesn't get blown away in the wind.   I wish we would have understood a little more about the wind before we came.   Yes, we were told that the wind blows but I don't think anyone really emphasized the word BLOWS.   We have an Elder here from Florida and he says that if it were blowing this hard in Florida they would call it a hurricane!   We determined that our walking range in that kind of wind is somewhat less than 3 blocks.   It is summer right now and the winds are relatively calm right now.  I don't think we have seen anything over 50 mph but some days it can just be constant at that speed.   They do have windmills here but they don't function because the wind blows too hard!
I found this link that shows a graph of the winds in Rio Gallegos.  It is kind of fun.

We just wanted everyone to know that we are alive and well at very close to the end of the world!


  1. I'm so glad to hear that you made it safe! Sounds like things have been very busy! We are well and praying every day for your success and happiness!
    Love ya!

  2. Yes I can see why you're calling it "the end of the world"! It must be strange in so many ways. Thinking about you often.

  3. Thanks for sharing this! I look forward to reading this to my kids tomorrow and learning a little more about Rio Gallegos with them. :) We pray for you both and Matthew every day and look forward to hearing more about your adventures as you help serve the members and hasten the work along.

  4. We are glad to see you've made it to Argentina and are getting settled! I have a good friend at work who grew up in Patagonia and he too commented about the wind. Looking forward to reading your blog. Do you have a mailing address for mail to go directly to you?
    May the Lord be with and bless you, Kevin and Laurie Smedley