Current time – 11:39 pm 
I know I should have written this blog during the global launch, but I simply couldn’t bring myself to write something. I’ve tried, but I didn’t know what to write. I think it is because I explained “why I wanted to take this gap year”, “what my goals” are to so many people that I didn’t feel the need to write it down one more time. 

Today is my 5th day in Ecuador, and I am sitting in the conference room right next to the hotel that North Ecuador cohort is staying. I have several other photos that I took during my time at Stanford, but I wanted to capture this moment so I interrupted my amigos and asked them to take this photo with me. Starting from the left: OG, Susan, and Hunter. 
Although I spent only a little time in this country, I feel so much amor for the people and the country. Today, during the free time before dinner, I was dozing on the couch behind the hotel restaurant, and woke up from the sound of movements. It was Rosario, the owner of the restaurant. Con mi un poco español, I asked her “¿ayuda?” She thought that I needed her help, but I was trying to say “can I help you?” She asked me if my throat was hurting. She went on to ask me if there is anything I needed. ¡Tanto amor como mi mamá! With my broken spanish, I said “¿puedo ayudarle?” 

(writing this 2 days later… )

That night I was able to help them a little bit, and the day before I was supposed to leave to my host family, Rosario told me to visit her with my host family one day. Here is the picture I took with them. 
Now, to the present. Today is my second day in my host family. I arrived yesterday. Unlike my friends’ host families, my family is laid back because there are no little kids in the house. My host sisters are 21, 25, 29, and they are all nice. Yesterday, I was finally able to unpack my belongings in my room. Also, I tried Salchipapa, and so far I don’t have any stomach issues (lol). Today, I went to mercado with two of my sisters, and met one of their aunts. They told me that about 50 extended family members live in this town. I am excited to get to know them all. Cotacachi is muy hermoso, and I am ecstatic to spend the next seven months here.