June 5

Congratulations to Carol Vollmer Pope, who submitted the top-rated image in this week’s It’s A Snap travel photo contest.

“I love to take pictures of this lake,” Pope said, describing Lake Ypacarai (pronounced ipa-KA-ra-ee) in San Bernardino, Paraguay.

Pope owns a home in San Bernardino and recently began a 1-year leave of absence from her teaching post at Alverno College in Milwaukee, Wis. When she’s not visiting Paraguay, Pope lives in New Berlin, Wis., a suburb of Milwaukee.

Pope said her affair with Paraguay started 20 years ago when she traveled there to adopt her baby son, Ryan. “I just fell in love with his country.”

Now, Pope is part owner of Hotel del Lago (hotel of the lake), which was built by Germans who settled the town in 1888. Over the past three years, Pope and her partners restored the hotel “back to 1888 glory.”

Every night, Pope walks to the lake from her house – “just a couple kilometers away” – and takes pictures of the sunsets. “They take away my stress,” she said. “There are very different skies every night, depending on the weather and the season.”

As if her life of running a hotel in picturesque Paraguay while on a 1-year leave of absence isn’t unbelievable enough, consider this: Pope captured the photo on her cell phone – a Nokia N73 with a built-in camera that she purchased in Paraguay.

Sometimes things just click.

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