Friday, May 31, 2013

Ecuador Archives: Dear Mom,

February 25th, 2013


                Heya. I thought I’d write you a letter to let you know how I’ve been doing.

                I just got back from TS3 (Training Seminar 3). We went to a nearby province called Imbabura to a town called Otavalo. Otavalo is super touristy because it has the biggest outdoor market in South America. Good part: Lots of really cool Ecua stuff. Bad part: I totally judge tourists.. not all of them.. just a significant chunk of them.

                Otavalo was really fun. This is what we did:

This is Otavalo.

We stayed in this cute place.

     Took plenty of photos.

Hiked this mountain with our weak, low altitude Cloud Forest lungs… it was hard, but worth it because we took TONS of photos and it was beaaautiful!

This is Betty, my “site mate” (that’s a Peace Corp term I’ve decided to adopt). 

We got a cleansing by an Indigenous woman. To cleanse you, she rubs a cuy (guinea pig) all over. The cuy takes out the bad spirits. (If the cuy dies fast it’s because you had a lot of bad spirits.) She rubs the cuy all over you until it dies. Then she puts the cuy in a bowl of water, takes off the skin (without a knife -- she starts at the anus and pulls it inside out) and examines the insides. Where the blood accumulates is where you have a sickness. Based on where you're sick, she then gives you recommendations for how you can feel better. (My diagnosis? Healthy! ..not a very exciting one)

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Ecuador Archives: Puerto Quito

Just a few photos with no particular significance, except that they are of my favorite place in the whole world.

(my fake & beloved Ray-Bans)

Next on my Ecuadorian adventures: Porch Sitting & my Best Friend Betty.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Sydni Heron PCT

I. have. a. job!

Within the next two weeks, I will be a maroon scrub wearing Patient Care Technician on the Medical Surgery floor of a hospital in a big city in the USA.

Coolest part about my new job? I'll be trained in Phlebotomy. This girl will be drawing blood for a living. (You know you work in the health field when you're excited about that.)

After I got the job, the first thing I did was buy the proper colored scrubs and take a crappy quality cell phone picture... 

...and I'm too excited to be embarrassed about it.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Ecuador Archives: Porch Sitting & My Best Friend Betty


Betty, the only other American living in my Ecuadorian town of Puerto Quito, and I developed a few new ones while in Ecuador.


[Oh darn! I lack a proper photo of us knitting, Betty. I assure you, though, this became a large part of our lives. We spent many days/evening knitting in my house or hers, making scarves. And only scarves because we had not learned to make anything else yet. And by "we" made scarves, I mean usually I worked on the same scarf I'd been working on for months while Betty knit a few lines and then redid it because it wasn't good enough.. over and over again. That's my perfectionist Betty.]

Walking / Rain Forest Exploring:

We found a cute little oasis a few miles out of Puerto Quito during one of our walking adventues.


Okay... Betty did most of the cooking... all of the cooking...

Double Dating

Oh, the memories...

Archutilla Hunting:

  Bags of them. Good work us.

All of these hobbies were great, but our favorite newly acquired hobby?

Porch Sitting.

Yes, you heard that correctly.

Let me explain for those of you novices in the art of Porch Sitting:

This is Betty's house.

Otherwise known as the perfect Porch Sitting location.

Let me zoom in a little bit:

It's pretty simple. Betty and I sit on the corner of the sidewalk, facing the street.

Really, that's it. 

We fill our time talking about nothing or our jobs or boys or life goals. Feel free to talk about whatever you'd like. Topic of conversation does not affect the quality of your Porch Sitting Session. We say hi to passers-by. We people watch. 

This Porch Sitting Time is yours. As long as you stay on your porch, the rules are not very strict.

Leading expert in the field, Aidan Holloway-Bidwell, teaches us more on the subject:

 "Porch sitting, not to be confused with porch standing, or its similar counterpart, reclined porch sitting, has been a common practice for longer than you might imagine. All one really needs to join the ranks of porch sitters around the world is a chair (rocking chair is usually preferred) and the willpower to just sit. Oh, and a porch."

This location is particularly ideal because the road you see leads out of town, so many motorcycles (sometimes being driven by cute Ecuaboys whom I have been known to whistle at a time or two *cough*) and cars and people use it to go inside and outside of Puerto Quito.

"I would say the most rewarding part of Porch Sitting is feeling completely calm and welcoming of whatever your day brings. Some porch sitting sessions end in fascinating conversations with total strangers. Others simply end because it's 8:30 and dark and you figure you should go home and eat dinner. Either way, you leave that porch with a newfound feeling of fulfillment."
-Quote from an avid Porch Sitter (me)

Some of us are not as fortunate, though..

 "A lot of people have no porches to sit on..." Galen Tsongas, San Francisco Resident, writes. He continues: "A sad story... But no matter how much I wish for a porch to sit on, one won't appear, and the bureaucratic city government hears not my pleas for such an addition to the apartment complex..."

Please be aware of our porchless sisters and brothers and, if possible, offer them a rocking chair next to yours.

Next on my Ecuadorian adventure: I leave Ecuador...


When I was fifteen I made the commitment that I would wait until my 21st birthday so that I could really make the choice on whether or not I wanted to serve a mission..

And now that the option is here, I have no idea if the next phase in my life includes a mission.

My papers are done, but I am not sure when (or if) I will turn them in.

I am praying.

And that's just how it goes sometimes.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Ecuador Archives: 14 de febrero, 2013

Otavalo, Ecuador

February 14, 2013

Next on my Ecuadorian adventures: Otavalo Part 2.

I'm Home!

On April 14th, I left my second home of Puerto Quito to come back to my first home in The States.

I made a video to tell ya'all about my experience, and remember it myself:

And now that I am home (with reliable internet access), I will keep my blog better updated. Hopefully. :)

Next on my Ecuadorian adventure: I go back!

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