Mitchell Mankin

Mitchell is a songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, equally comfortable playing saxophone, strumming folk music, or arranging a composition for his jazz ensemble. Friends and professors describe Mitchell as kind, intelligent, and curious. He is also interested in psychology and sociology, which he has explored through his school’s Psychology club and his own reading.



Although I am now back in the United States, I haven’t forgotten Ecuador.  When I dream, I’m still back in Ecuador, among the plantains and cacao, working with the women of Sinchi Warmi.  All these memories that come back to me at unexpected moments led me to think back to a little piece of writing…

17 May, 2012

Jacob’s Story

Jacob* runs a little tienda sells just two things: local jewelry and books. Jacob appears much like many of the other store owners in town. I probably passed him many times without really noticing him. The first time I really saw Jacob, he was talking to a couple of enthralled Germans seated on the sidewalk….

27 March, 2012

4 Hours Downriver

Arrival In December, I was invited by my family to a wedding in Cruz Chicta, the ancestral home of my host father’s family. I jumped at the chance to see a marriage in a village still lacking paved roads and electricity. The trip there was an experience in itself. In the four hours that water…

08 March, 2012

Sinchi Aqua Center

The pickup truck turns off the wide gravel road from Misahualli and onto a narrower track, carrying you and four members of your new family in the back. Thirty feet above your head, the trees nearly touch. You’re headed into the jungle. Then, to your right appears a half-constructed house, and chickens scatter back towards…

22 November, 2011

Split Personality

There are two people living in my body.  One of them is writing to you now.  He’s constantly thinking, turning an analytical eye to important and decidedly not important things.  He’s often told that he thinks too much, which is true.  The other doesn’t have that luxury.  His mind is absorbed entirely by trying to…

10 November, 2011

I Want To Be A Quiteño

Buenas Tardes, Sorry it’s been so long that I haven’t written.  Nearly every day I’ve started a blog post, only to look at it the next day and discredit it as naive, cliche, or based on ideas that I no longer hold to be true.  Finally, I’ve decided to let go of the next day…

22 September, 2011


So how does someone end up putting off college for a year and going to a country thousands of miles away?  Well, each fellow here has their own reasons, but here are mine.  I’ve always been a person who likes to gather knowledge about the rest of the world — its history, its geography, and…

06 July, 2011

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Mitchell Mankin