Armando and Sandra Rivera traveled a long way to visit Alaska. They live in Bogota, Colombia. Their flights to get here took them from Colombia to Panama, to Miami, to New York, to Seattle, to Anchorage.
So was it worth it? Let's find out.
Q: How has your vacation been?
Armando: It has been incredible. We have done so much and seen so much.
Sandra: It has been wonderful, really wonderful.
Q: What has been the highlight of your trip?
Armando: We took an airplane flight. It was very exciting. He let me pilot the plane. It was probably 15 minutes. First, we went up (makes hand signal of airplane climbing); then we went down (makes hand signal of descending). We could see everything.
Sandra: I went to the snow for the first time. It was something unbelievable. We went to (Byron) glacier and to see all that ice and the colors -- wow!
Armando: The blue ice was amazing. You don't expect to see ice that color. It's really blue.
Sandra: When we get home we're going to say, 'We went to Alaska and saw glaciers and saw ice that was blue.' It was so wonderful. No one will believe us.
Q: Do you have other special memories?
Armando: Hiking. We went to the gold mine, Independence Mine. We hiked up to the lake and we had to climb over the rocks. There were these cascades inside the rocks. We couldn't see the water, we would only hear the cascades.
Sandra: For me, going over the rocks on the way to the glacier was like climbing Mount McKinley. I realized I am afraid of heights. I was crawling over all the rocks. Everybody else would say, 'My feet hurt.' I would say, 'My hands hurt.' Adrenaline is so good for us. I was able to leave all my stress in the rocks.
They walked up and touched the glacier and (Armando) saw a cave in the ice and there was a cascade in there. That was beautiful.
Armando: The most impressive thing was it was like looking at an ice cube, only it was huge. The ice on the glacier was 1,000 years old. When you touch the ice, you are the first person to ever touch it. It's melting all the time, so if somebody else touches it, they touch something different. You leave your DNA right there with the melting ice.
Q: Where are you going from here?
Sandra: We are going to Portland to visit a friend. It will be a different vacation. We didn't know what to expect here. We regret not having stayed here longer. We really regret that. We had such a wonderful time.
In addition to all the things we saw, we met lots of wonderful people. We met lots of (fellow Jehovah's Witnesses). We will remember it always.