Live From The Field


On September 20, 2019 I went to a festival called Killa Raymi. A moon festival for the Cañari people. I was nothing short of an amazement with the traditional dances, clothing and rienas. It was definitely an experience but not in a good way. I went to go walk with my little cousin Martin(8) around the festival while he played with a light up styrofoam airplane he bought there. I had revieced a message from my host father so as I responded my little cousin had hit an officer by accident. When I look up and see this I rush to my cousin to get him away from the officer. The officer loses all interest in my cousin and immediately asks my name in which I give him a completely different name. He then proceeds to ask me where I’m from and I say “not from here” the first two times then I say “I don’t have to tell you where I’m from since I have done nothing wrong”. He then asks me to dance and I say “no thank you I don’t like too” and he says “it’s ok let’s just dance” and I say “no thank you I have a boyfriend” (which is a lie). He said “it’s ok he’s not here” so I walk away bothered to the other side of the festival to sit down with my little cousin and in less than ten minutes he follows me and goes behind me and at first I ignore him but the he taps me to get my attention and asks me if I’m ok and if the kids are bothering me and I say “no” (but what I wanted to say is your the only one bothering me) and he replies by saying that it’s HIS job to protect me and I tell him  I can protect myself and he says “ it’s because your a girl” and I’m that moment I got so mad  and I got in his face and I started screaming at him “just because I’m a girl doesn’t mean I can’t protect myself”. You could tell he  felt scared his eyes got wide and he would back away trying to get me to be quiet or to calm me down but I was mad. This wasn’t the first time I was harassed but it was the first time I stood up for myself and trust me when I say it felt good to yell at him. Then someone grabs my arm and pulls me back and at first I thought I was about to get arrested but it was my host aunt who pulled me and took me out of the situation before I did something that could get me into a lot of trouble. I realize now that I am calm that I probably shouldn’t have done what I did because if it was any other cop it could have turned out to be a really dangerous situation but I do not regret any part of it. I did what almost no woman do here because they are scared of these nasty men. So with that being said I am not sorry I yelled at him at all. I am not sorry that he felt threatened for the first time in his life. I am not sorry because that’s how I have feel every time I walk outside in this country. It’s only right they get to feel at least one time in thier life what a woman here feels everyday of thier life.  But , I don’t blame them  though since they probably came from a long generation of disgusting men who didn’t get taught better. They think its  ok to keep on pushing l when we say no. That girl could easily be their  mother,  sister or daughter how would they feel then? We are in a new era with the same beliefs as our ancestors. This machista culture has to change.