November 23, 2011




I spent part of today considering my route and places I might visit. I have been drawn to visit the Galapagos Islands and now have decided against it. What is my real reason? It is such a fragile ecosystem that is getting bombarded by tourists to the point it will not sustain the impact. Tourists flock to these fragile places hoping to see them before they disappear and the irony is that the tourism is what will make them disappear. Again I ask my self, "why?". Why would I want to go there? To say I've been there, to take photos and say "been there, done that". No it is not about that anymore, it used to be, I liked to go places and while even there I was not fully there. I was at times thinking about how I was going to tell this story. Because I was thinking about telling the story to my friends I was not fully present. Now I seek to be in nature to feel its awesome energy and force, I know the Galapagos Islands is full of that but I also wonder if the energy of the tourists have altered it. The same holds true of other places I plan to visit, how "sacred" are these when they are being trampled by tourists either going there trying to seek something that is already inside them, or those who just wish to add one more to their list of conquests.

It is difficult at times to balance what the ego wants and what the soul wants.

I sit here in a country where I do not know the language, at this moment I am listening to beautiful latin music and do not know the words or what she is singing about. The sound in her voice makes me think she must be singing about love. The passion is a universal theme in the world, everyone loves, even the hardest person loves something such as their favorite drink or food. Love does not need words, when someone radiates a loving presence others can feel that.

I feel like this is similar to the vision quest I did, on the vision quest the guides took you slowly into the descent of the wilderness. Initially we all camped with our cars parked nearby, then we had to take fewer things with us as we carpooled with only a few cars through the rough terrain going deeper. The third stage was carrying everything we needed on our backs and hiking into a remote area, no cars, no other contact with the outside world, no cell phones, no books etc... Then the fourth stage was hiking in with a small day pack to a remote area to be alone for 3 days, the fasting started the previous day to make it a 4 day fast.

Where I am at now, Ciro loves U.S. music, so I hear familiar music when Ciro gets home from his work in the early afternoon. So there is still a little bit of a connection to home. He had not heard of Toni Childs and he became in instant fan. The bottom floor of their home is an internet cafe' and he played a lot of her stuff on youtube.

During the late afternoon we walked into town to the mall for some shopping. The cars here really do own the road, even at a stop sign you'd think it would be safe to step off the curb and walk, no the cars don't usually stop at stop signs and people are supposed to get out of the way of cars. Vehicles always have the right of way here no matter what! The shops here are tiny and it is amazing how people manage with such small spaces, the typical little shop may consist of a 10'x20' size. The shops also overflow onto the sidewalks as people are busy walking up and down, cars and buses back and forth with lots of diesel smoke in the air. Lots of noise and life everywhere in this town of 10 million people.

Afterwards we took a taxi home, taxis and buses are everywhere and by US standards very inexpensive transportation, no reason to really own a car and many don't. A very common method of transportation is by motorcycle since they can navigate between cars and get places quicker. I did see a guy on a motorcycle with a tiny baby up front with him and his wife on back. Motorcycles are very cheap and there are many motorcycle service stations.

The first step out of my bedroom door.

The stairs

looking out the window
If a picture is worth a thousand words, what is a video worth?

Breakfast was rice cooked to be a little crispy; eggs with tomato, onion and garlic; freshly made croissant from the corner, to drink was agua de panela with milk.

Lunch being cooked; trucha a type of fish similar to salmon

A local fruit called curuba, right is one that was peeled and getting ready to make juice with it.

Lunch with trucha fish and mushroom sauce; they like their rice to be a bit crispy, that is their tradition; the salad is a mixture of fruits and vegetables, raisans, pineapple, carrots, cabbage and cheese.

This photo is the first in the series of photos on our walk to the mall

The sky and the clouds can change quickly in the afternoons

We are walking to the green and blue building in the distance.

This plant inside the window has found a way out

Appgetting ready to go into the mall


I am wanting to be objective with what I see around me. For me to impose our cultural standards on their way of life would be very narrow minded of me. I am trying to see the culture like an anthroplogist would, no bias no judgement. There are many dogs that wander around the streets but they look pretty healthy and none are aggressive, I have not seen an aggressive dog at all.


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