Thursday, June 5, 2008

Ecuador May 24, 2008

Ecuador May 24, 2008

It continued to get colder last night. Eugenio was walking around with his leather coat on and I decided not to go to the festival. I will probably go today. The only thing I will miss are the fireworks. I can see them from the balcony from my room anyway.

Several of you have mentioned the tornadoes in Weld County. That was actually on our local news here in Cuenca. What a mess. I remember tornadoes in Iowa but there have been very few in Colorado in the 38 years I have lived there.

Julie the former roommate came by yesterday to get the rest of her stuff. She is on her way to the Galapagos for a couple of months. Elena was gone when Julie was here and when I told her that Julie had come by she started to cry because Julie did not call her. I can’t imagine the hundreds of students who have lived with Elena over the years and she views all of them as her children. She even considers me who is ten years older than she is.

Elena was at a civic event last night and her daughter in law made dinner for us. Their whole family was here too. I just wish that all families could be as tight as this one.

My instructor Miguel asked me yesterday if I had been sick or if any of the students had been sick. I told him that no one had to my knowledge. I guess he wondered if the water or food had bothered anyone. I don’t remember anyone getting sick in Mexico, Guatemala or Ecuador. In my opinion each country goes out of the way to be clean. I heard more about food poisoning in Summit County when I was a commissioner. The dirtiest thing you can eat in the United States, Colorado or Summit County is the salad bar. There are too many opportunities for contamination.

Speaking of eating. There is a restaurant near the house called Punto’s. It is very new and upscale. The front half is fast food take-out and the other side is a nice sit down restaurant. It has nice lighting and tablecloths with nicely dressed wait staff. Now here is the kicker. There are about four armed guards with shotguns and machine guns at all of the entrances. Now are they there to keep people out or to keep people in the restaurant? Having been a police officer for many years I know something about guns and theirs are top of the line. I guess they are there to prevent armed robberies.

There is a taxi stand on the way to school that has three heavily armed police officers. I could never figure out why as it is in a very quiet neighborhood. Yesterday I had to walk on the other side of the street because of traffic and figured out what was up. There is a drug rehab residence on the other side of the street from the taxi stand. Nice they can have their own three police officers.

Another interesting police story. The motorcycle police here ride very small dirt bikes. Actually it is a good idea because they are fast and lightweight. They can get in and out of traffic very easily. Sometimes there will be two officers on one motorcycle. A two man motorcycle. I am sure that the police unions in the United States would not like that one. I would not like to be the passenger on a police motorcycle but it does double your manpower.

I do not have any plans for today. The girls are going to the Ecological Park for the day. If it is not raining I will go to the Plaza for the festival and download my computer at the computer store. g

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