Happy new year friends, family, and web visitors! Two days ago Lynsey and I got home from a 20-day circuit around Ecuador, and there is much to share. We´ve decided to break the trip up into three parts: Volcanic mountain fun, the Cotopaxi experience, and our cruise down the coast. We hope everyone had a great holiday with friends and family, and know that you all were missed! We figured the next best thing to being with those closest to us would be to tour around and get to know our new country - so here are some things we discovered! The map below denotes the first two legs on the journey. It´s interactive so you can zoom, switch to Google Earth, etc. to get a better sense of the landscape. Enjoy!
We are thankful for old friends
and new amigos,
for comfortable places
and exciting new ones,
for loving families who support us
regardless of country or continent,
and for the good fortune
that has brought us
and sustained us
where we are.
-- Lynsey + Josh --
*turkey designed by Lynsey*
Thanksgiving abroad can be a bittersweet event. Of course, no one here celebrates this holiday, so you just do your best to explain the connections between Pilgrims, turkey, football, and overeating. Polite Ecuadorians smile and say it sounds nice, though I'm not sure how much of the essence our explanations capture. However, the one part universally understood was family. Families here are generally very tight-knit inter-connected units that influence every facet of life. Our students were able to empathize fully when we commented that the hardest part of Thanksgiving was being so far from families and friends. They got that, and probably most wondered if or why they would ever live outside of Cuenca - so far from everything and everyone they've ever known. Lynsey and I also ponder that question from time to time, but knowing that it comes inherently with living abroad . Despite the dull bitterness of missing loved ones, we do want to share some tidbits from Cuenca that we're certainly happy (and thankful) for - here they are:
Like + Share