Thursday, June 5, 2008

Ecuador May 16, 2008

Ecuador May 16, 2008

I suppose if I were living in a bigger place than Breckenridge I might think that there were a lot of things happening much the same as in Cuenca. This place never stops. Everyone is always going somewhere and doing something.

The house next door has a dog that barks all night long. In the beginning I thought it was because there was someone walking by or an axe murderer lurking in the shadows. Nope. It is just a barking dog. After a while I got used to it.

I walk about two miles to school each way. It is actually a pleasant walk and great exercise. About half way there is a taxi stand that is just like taxi stands everywhere in the world. About ten taxis parked against the curb with the drivers all huddled together telling lies to each other the way huddling men are prone to do.

In the midst of this social gathering each morning is a lone dog. It kind of looks like a border collie but the Border collie in this one is nearly long gone. The dog is a mutt. Each morning as I work my way through the crowd of drivers this one dog will start to follow me and try it’s hardest to threaten me with a very weak bark. I almost feel sorry for it. I am sure that the dog feels it is protecting the drivers from whatever threat I pose.

The oldest child in my family here is Fabian. He is in his early forties, married to Sylvia and they have a boy and a girl. On the resume that they provided he is listed as a Chemical Engineer. Someone said once that he ran a tire store. I found out later that he is the plant manager for General Tire here in Cuenca. A very smart and important man. He is also very kind and gentle. He is the fellow we all want our sons to be like when they grow up.

I have been taking a ton of pictures of the family and of Cuenca in the past two weeks. A few days ago Fabian asked me if he could use his flash drive to get some of my photos and of course I agreed.

Last night he and his family came over for dinner and after dinner we went to my room so he could capture the photos. A few minutes later the whole family was in my room to watch what we were doing. He got about ten photos and I started to shut down my computer. He asked me to stop because he wanted to show me what he was doing with the pictures.

Come to find out he had created this wonderful power point presentation with music of his family. The whole thing lasted about twenty minutes and it was wonderful. I think that he must have used Photo Shop to do the special effects. He had photos of him growing up then his wife and then his own children. I was blown away. Here is a chemical engineer who is the plant manager for a tire company in Ecuador creating an excellent film with special effects. I have wasted $10 watching things that were terrible. His production was something that I would pay much more for.

Believe it or not I am ending my second week in Ecuador today. I am very happy with my decision to come here and am looking forward to the next two weeks. My family is wonderful. The food is great. The city is outstanding. The school is much more than I expected. What more can I say.

One thing that I find interesting that I can’t ever change is my age. My host family is 64 and 62. The average age of the average student in the school is about 22. The average age of the average teacher is about 30. When I look around at home and at school I am the oldest person in the room. Of course I don’t feel that way but it makes me feel out of place at times. I guess I feel out of place in Breckenridge too. Maybe I need to move into a retirement home with a bunch of 70, 80 and 90 year old residents. Then I could look around and feel like the kid in the room. They say that there are two things that are inevitable. Death and taxes. I guess old age would be another thing you have to find inevitable. g

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