8 May 2012

Back at last and homesick again!

Well actually, I`ve been back what around 3 weeks now, but there aren`t just enough hours in the day for me anymore!! It took us around a week to get back into the swing of things; the jetlag is always worse from Chile to Ireland, must be the time difference.  I couldn`t get to sleep until 3 or 4 am, now I still can`t get to sleep until that time, because Annabelle has a high temperature and is guerney (very Norn Irish word = irritable), because her 12 month vac. is hitting in! Poor wee thing!

Was I really in Chile?  When we arrived, it was so surreal, like it couldn`t possibly have been 3 years since we left; it felt like we never had.  And now, we`re back here, it`s like we never went to Chile at all............ but we did!

 Our first ever family shot, taken by a kind Australian tourist in Cerro San Cristobal. With a little photoshopping, this could be half decent.  We have no pics. of us all together.....

 3,000 metres above sea-level, one of my favourite places on earth, halfway up the Andes!
Valle Nevado is actually a ski resort but you can do trekking here in the summer. Here we are looking out for the condors at the Mirador de los cóndores.

Anyway, we had a GREAT time!! The only downside were the tremors.  The last one was the night before we left and I kind of had this weird feeling that there was going to be a quake just before it happened!  Freaky!  All fun on the ninth floor!!!  In 9 + years of living in Chile, of all the countless tremors that I experienced, I think the strongest was about a 4.5, and in 1 month we had 3 strong ones, 2  were 6.3 + on the Richter scale in Santiago.  Glad I missed the biggie in February 2010.   Chileans are used to them though, very few people panic, but we had to vacate the building for the last one using the stairway, and wait outside on the street. i had to wake the boys up, and their dad too! Thankfully the engineering in Chile really is second to none now, the buildings are built to withstand strong earthquakes, or at least minimise the damage, but building the tallest building in LatinAmerica is maybe tempting fate! I for one, wouldn`t want to work on the top floor, nice view or not!

Cerro San Cristobal, with the new Costanera Center building in the background and unfortunately a lot of smog as well!

And one of the best highlights of our trip, was of course that "abuela" got to meet Annabelle (as well as spoiling all 3 of them!) 

Of course  I crammed a pile of  art stuff into my suitcase, blindly ignoring the wise voice in me that said "you`ll never get the half of it done".  At least I managed to three-quarters fill a fat sketchbook with drawings, memories, clippings, etc.  and when the time is right I will use them for some paintings.  (Will maybe post a few of these sketches in due course.)  Since I`ve been back, don`t know how, but I`ve been doing some monoprinting in the studio, some I really like, some not, and have busied myself painting and drawing the cherry blossoms in the garden, since the flowers are so beautiful, but so transient! (No photos yet.)

Our studio gallery has now been painted with a special damp-proof paint and it`s working!!!! Hooray!  Next step is to get the rails up and a lot of my stuff framed.  I`m also doing stuff for Johnstreet Gallery. (They`ve got an e-sales up and running so check it out).  As busy as a bee!  Hope to see more of them if the weather would only change! 

¡Nos vemos pronto!

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