Archive for March, 2010|Monthly archive page


In Travel on March 28, 2010 at 2:03 am
View from our balcony

View from our balcony

I arrived in Salasaca, Ecuador two and a half weeks ago.  Such a short time for such a small place to become the world.  Here, women carry straw on their backs, stamping the dusty road with bare feet.  Here, women spin yarn as they walk: one hand ensconced in a bandana of raw wool, the other pulling, stretching, and wrapping ragged strands around a wooden spindle.

Here, children wave; they run and laugh.  They look up with shy eyes, with easy smiles, they proffer hands.  Their undulled excitement is a first breath out of water.  It never gets old, because it always feels good.

Salasaca´s the world, because there are no tall buildings, there are few finished buildings, there are stars.  It´s the world, because old men cut agave leaves into bundles on the road.  They gum toothless mouths and cut pathways through the sandy earth.  What else would old men do?

Salasaca´s the world because it´s really not so hard to get up at 6:30 in the morning.  To eat another bowl of porridge and remove the drowned flies, to boil water and head into the mountains.  To bristle at dogs´ barks, to breathe 9000 ft breaths, to bear a constellation, no a night sky, of spider bites upon pale skin.

Salasaca´s the world – or has become my world – because it´s so otherworldly.  It’s become my world because that otherworldliness doesn´t matter.  This land of mountains and verdure and ¨buenos días¨ is just another in a long line of places to breathe, to itch and shit and sing.  It´s another place, a good place to accept a wandering, wondering 20-something.  To answer her questions with itself, an implacable 42, so long sought and true, so inscrutable.


algo de Ecuador

In Travel on March 28, 2010 at 1:37 am

I am a snack for bed bugs.  I am a carrier of pineapples in plastic bags.  I am a witness to giant dogs, felled by rigor mortis, feet up on dusty dirt roads.  Yes, I am in Ecuador.