As we’ve probably mentioned before, the seasons in South America are opposite the seasons in North America – so while most of you are sweating in the heat, we’re enjoying cooler “wintery” temperatures. For us, winter in Cochabamba is pleasant, since it reminds us of spring in the U.P.
Bolivians tend not to agree with us…
In all fairness, it has been a bit chilly – in the 30s and 40s at night – and central heat doesn’t exist. Some families use space heaters, but they can’t heat your entire home. And all buildings are made of concrete and brick or adobe, so they tend to get chilly and stay chilly. In higher regions of Bolivia, the cold is more extreme (El Alto had snow last night) and most families in the country don’t have space heaters to help combat the cold.
But to us, winter in Cochabamba isn’t really winter – it gets up to the 70s every afternoon (in the sun). And winter isn’t winter without snow, right?
Last Sunday we woke up to snow! The seasons in the southern hemisphere are opposite to those in the northern hemisphere, so we are experiencing winter at the moment… here’s some pictures!
As you can see, winter here isn’t quite what we’re used to!
Bolivia has four seasons, just like Michigan, but they’re a little different. Spring is next, with lots of blooming flowers and plants. Then we’re on to the rainy season (summer) when it rains 3-4 times every week and is hot. Fall brings wind, and then we’re back to winter, when it is “cold”. I say “cold” because to us the weather is summer like – it doesn’t get as cold in Cochabamba as in the midwest during the winter. However, it is the coldest period of the year!
This picture was taken when we were on a hike a few weeks ago.
I like wearing t-shirts in winter!
This morning I had to scrape the windshield for the first time this year. It’s a sign that things are changing; winter is coming. It’s kind of bittersweet – summers in the Keweenaw are amazing, and I’m not really ready to start shoveling. But the beauty of the fall leaves has passed, and the snow, however much work it is, brings a new type of beauty to the area.
This is our last winter in Houghton, my sixth winter. I love it here. But next year we’ll be in a landlocked country that doesn’t have winter, living in a city of nearly a million people.
We’re going to miss the UP! But the reason we’re going to Bolivia isn’t for the scenery (though the mountains will be beautiful). It isn’t for the weather (although not shoveling will be nice). It isn’t for the experience (but it is an incredible opportunity). It’s for the people. We’re going because God has called us to go and serve and minister and love people.
Why don’t we have this mindset wherever we are?