Priyanka Rao - Ecuador

September 15, 2011

Here we are in to Atlanta – flying over it at the moment.  “Starting our descent.”  Left at 4 am this morning to the extenuating circumstances of leaving 31 soul-mates that I met last week.  I am awake to say the most of this situation, since I have been falling in and out of a doze for the past several (few?) hours, next to ‘Martin’ of Belguim on the plane (Delta Airlines).  He is a calm cheery level-headed person to have along on a plane-ride away.

Now we are on the plane to Quito.  People were telling me to get some sleep.  Yesterday, as a farewell activity, we did a string-tie with Abby.  We each shared something we commit to, and then passed on the ball of yarn.  Abigail, who is sitting next to me on the plane, committed to ‘embracing the unexpected’.  My piece of string that is currently tied around my ankle signifies my promise to love the entirety of this experience.  I’d begun to think this trip would be good for some people without thinking that I would, or needed to change as well.  It is extremely endearing to be broken up into country groups and be sharing the experience of a stormy ride toEcuadoras unique.  Abigail saw some lightening and we are in a dark cloud.  It was gloriously sunny before, above the palaces of clouds, but the skies change.  Especially going at 904 km/hr. Cuba is carrying a mess of storms about its shores.  It is perfect for writing in this dark, dim lighting- perfect almost, as it is personal; unadulterated and free-flowing in the just-gleaming light.

We are sitting next to a young man named David, from Quito.  His father works in Washington.  Abigail understands español bastante (quite) well…possibly because her mother is a Spanish professor.  This plane is full of Ecuadorians and some stares, so that it felt like foreign territory even as we set foot on the plane.  Their features do seem to share some Asian characteristics.  I got quite excited to start learning Spanish.  David is nice and friendly, but he is reading an english book “Awakening” about vampires, which he does not understand much of.

I am enjoying immersing.  After two weeks of intense environment and encouragement to speak and communicate, we are thrown her -, where truly you must be okay with listening and lying back…Which is just as well, because I’ve lost my voice.  Quito-here you come.

Priyanka Rao