Here are the thoughts of Joanna nee Lake as she spends time in Ecuador, and beyond... Disciple, Fairtrade Freak, Psychologist in the making. Now part of the Blundell Jones clan.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Moving on...

Street talk
Well, this week(or rather 'last') i had the strangest and the sweetest of all my street encounters…
I was waiting at a zebra crossing for the lights to turn red, I was watching the cars to see when they slowed, and I heard this little voice say ‘Como se llama?’ (what is your name?) and I turned my head to see what was going on with a ‘ey?’ and there was this wee little girl standing beside me, looking at my in an extremely inquisitive manner… she repeated. ‘What is your name?’ ‘Joanna’ I replied, ‘Y tu?’ (and you?) and the little girl replied ‘Jasmine’… what a beautiful name I said, looking up to see if the lights were changing… ‘where are you going? She continued.. ‘To my house’… She started to ask ‘Usted es de los Estados?’ (you’re from the USA?) (NOOOOOOOOO) just as the lights changed and as I begin to cross the road I reply ‘from England’… ‘oh?’… and there our conversation stops. It was such a surreal experience that I walked away with a huge big grin on my face, it just amazed me how bold this wee child was, and how inquisitive and uninhibited, to start asking a foreigner who intrigued her, questions. She can’t have been more than 6 years old!!

Work, work, work
So I was back to work with a vengeance on the card-making business! We’ve got to have ready for the beginning of September 1000 cards and 500 bookmarks for the Pastor of Remar Ecuador to take to the big Remar conference being held in Spain… having spent the majority of the week sorting and fixing, telling the girls what needs to be done, I finally managed to do the big count of what we have… just under 500 cards!! Hmmm!!! There is A LOT more to be done!! Ooo---- but this week we’ve worked almost exclusively on the bookmarks which are pretty much done, I think there’s about 30 to do! So that’s something!!!
It’s good to be back in the cards this time, I’m more relaxed after such a long break from it…and although I’m missing being with the kids, it’s good to spend time with some of the teenagers, and we’re roped in some of the volunteers to help as well!! Robbie’s now gone off to Peru, but Pamela’s still with me, and Siobhan from Ireland has just arrived (and will be with us 2 months at least), and we’ve also an Ecuadorian lass, Cristina, whose doing some ‘social work’ hours for Uni… so all is going well!

MINDO::: land of butterflies
So Saturday Pam and I took a trip to Mindo, a wee ‘cloudforest’ 2 and ½ hours west of quito…. My guide book said it looked rather like an Alpine village transplanted into the tropics - to be honest, i couldn't see the connection!! but hey ho... we took a 4omin walk in the hot sun from the village to a butterfly sanctuary... and i had one sit on my finger... it was fine (though i was slightly nervous not being a great lover of insects!!) until the point where i wanted it to get off my finger and it wouldn't, then i started to panic a bit... my interactions with bugs have to be on my terms!!! we had lunch watching hummingbirds dart around in front of our table, which was actually really quite amusing with all their antics, especially the 'bully' who kept bumping into the rest like a crazy dodg'um car ride to stop them from getting a drink! And i was impressed with the level of the sound they make with their wings, i.e. loud!! After that Pam and I took a 'tube' trip down the river... sort of equivalent of rafting for shallow/rocky rivers... basically you go down in a rubber ring tied to 5 others (in a flower-like shape). It was good fun!! only thing was, waiting to get in the river, i got bitten, and i mean REALLY bitten by some mean little black bugs in the sand! i have 18 bites on my left leg, and 13 on my right! and they itch!!! But other than that, it was a great day out!

Generally I’m feeling a lot better after my experience, not how I was before which is in some ways better as I’m wiser, though slightly more cautious which makes life a bit more difficult, i'm definitely paranoid but getting on with things! ‘Sad point’, the 3 english lads came back just for the day to visit us (they’d traveled to Peru), and they went sunday, when they were back I realized how much I had appreciated them being around – I’m gonna miss them, they’re a real breath of fresh air, loved their very English boy banter!!
Well, tis all for now my beloved ones…
Me xx


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