Saturday, June 7, 2008

Enjoying the view

I've finally made it back into the larger town so I can add some more pictures. There are a couple from the potato picking minga (including everyone fleeing the stuck truck), and a couple of my host siblings staging their own mini olympics. The others are from the gorgeous hike from the crater lake back to my town. In a side note if anyone is wondering about why I never include the names of places in my blog, it's a result of peace corps policy. Apparently they are worried that nefarious people will find the blog and use the information to kidnapp us or something like that. I find this rather humerous, as it isn't that hard to find gringos in Ecuador in the first place. Besides we volunteers have only slightly more money than the locals, so if I were a kidnapper I'd definitely go for the rich tourists first. So now you know why I'm so vague and if I'm totally digressing it's because I had to get up at 2:30 this morning to catch the bus here.
Anyway back to the absolutely lovely (and tiring hike). I hooked up with another peace corps volunteer who was visiting with a friend to do the hike. We were also joined by another couple from one of the hostels. The truck ride up to the crater was tiring in and of itself because it was very bumpy and all of us had sore rear ends. The hike starts by walking part way around the crater and then leaving it to head towards the town. One thing that's true of hikes here is that there are no safety standards. There were a few times when we were climbing down the mountain or traversing a mudslide on the side of a cliff that I was a little concerned for my safety. But it was well worth the risk and the sore muscles afterwards. So if anyone reading this ends up visiting, this is definitely one thing we'll be doing =)
I have come to hate meetings here (not that I really liked them anywhere). They are soooo long and it seems like the point could have been gotten to a lot faster. Last night I ended up leaving before the end of the women's group meeting because I wasn't feeling good and we had already been there for several hours without really accomplishing anything (as near as I could tell). Plus the whole latin time thing is not a myth. I'm surprised when things start within an hour of when they're supposed to. So I bring a book or my knitting and settle in for the long haul.

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