Thursday, February 12, 2009

Yo necesito pagar la cuenta de la correa!

So the week´s been good, with the exception of a little sickness and the fact that I can´t walk up or down stairs.
We visited the equator yesterday. I was able to successfully stand an egg on its end (for which i got a signed certificate) and I was able to hit a target with a blow dart gun. The equator is really beautiful and sits next to one of the largest ecological reserves in the world. And honestly, I was more intrigued by the ecological reserve than the equator. The reserve is inside a volcano where there are over 200 hummingbird species and hundreds of different exotic plants. People live in there to tend to the plants and birds. How amazing is that. I've been imagining an advanced and successful society of old ladies, herding sheep and knitting and drinking chicha on the front porch of their little volcanic homes.
The equator itself is pretty touristy, but I met a bunch of people from Boston (yay mese and julia!). The best part of the tour was when the guide brought us over to the preserved animal and human head display. Sound weird? It was. Apparently in ancient times
I´m getting closer to a number of people on the trip and I´ve been having a lot of fun. We had Salsa classes tonight and apparently I´m a natural?? Alejandro, the son of the hostel owner, grabbed me about half way through the lesson and started spinning me and twirling me like mad. I had a great time, though I have no idea what he said to me at the end of it all. I´m pretty sure it was positive though.
So a few days ago I got a package in the mail. And during one of my lessons Myriam and I went to the post office to pick it up. When we got there I signed a bunch of papers and gave them multiple copies of my passport and Myriam and I sat and waited. We waited for about twenty minutes until an armed officer came out and called the name Sara Blair Patterson. I figured he was talking to me so I followed him into a small office. He then pulled out a razor blade, held up my package and slit it open. He asked me if I knew what was in it and I said I didn´t so he turned the package upside down and out came thirty packs of gushers. I have never laughed so hard in my life, but obviously he wasn´t in on the joke. So then he put everything back in the package, retaped it and put it in a separte bin. I couldn´t figure out why they weren´t giving me the package so I got up and started to walk over to the bin but he stopped me and told me that I had to pay a tax on the package. The problem is that the officers at the post office can´t be trusted with money so I was to go to the Bank of Ecuador to pay the tax. Two days later, I get to the bank and its closed but Jossie and I sneak in the back entrance at which time another armed guard stops me and asks me what I´m doing there. I try to explain in my broken spanish that I need to pay the tax so I can get my package (by the way I only had two days to pay) and he leaves us in a private area of the bank. He then comes out and tells us that we can´t pay the tax there and sends us to another bank near the airport. Big mistake as it is closed and there was no back entrance to sneak into. Anyway, at the end of all of this Jossie and I decide to try a local bank and I walk in and talk to another guard who points to a window that is reserved specifically for mail tax. Gah!! I pay the tax and Jossie and I book it back to the other side of town only to get my package minutes before the office closes and minutes before my package disappears forever. We left the post office and ate gushers all the way home. They were the most delicious gushers I had ever eaten in my entire life. And Erin, I will be your valentine, I will!

We have our Spanish final exam tomorrow, which will just assess where everyone is at the end of the past two weeks of lessons. Saturday we head to the small town of Tena to do some white water rafting and jungle exploration. I hope they give me a machete. After that we head to Puerto Lopez to start our first project.

I love you all.

love and bugs,


  1. JIMMENY CHRISTMAS!!! Note to self: never send massive quantities of gushers across international borders again. Come to think of it, the crazy, hippy, postman did warn me that they can be considered an addictive substance. My bad ... I just thought you needed a little adventure in your life .... love you!

  2. You get your twirling from your mother.

    Those were the most expensive gushers ever sold.

  3. I hate having to ask this, but what are gushers?

  4. Woah!!! All in a week of the adventures of betty teaspoon. You're making me nervous, Blair, w/ all this guard interaction stuff. But it sounds like you're having the time of your life. And, I'm w/ Julie...I don't know what gushers are either. But they must be good. Until next posting, love ya.

  5. Ok, Ok. Someone must explain ... gushers are freaky fruit snacks that have a fruit-flavored chemical goo that gushes out of the middle when you bite them. Inexplicably, they are one of Blair's favorite foods. She can wipe out an entire box of them in an hour ... scary and awe-inspiring at the same time.

  6. Boo for sick, hell yeah for gushers! Damn, now I really want some. I wanna balance and egg and blow darts! That sounds so raddddd. Geez, what a package nightmare, but a fun story in retrospect, yeah? Whenever something is too big to fit in my mailbox I have to go pick it up from the post office, which until now I considered a hassle. Thanks fer the perspective.