Poco a Poco

Priyanka Rao - Ecuador


December 10, 2011

Today, I’m just quieter in general, so I’m getting less Spanish intake; yesterday’s exhaustion and headache justify my taking a break.  Today I am sitting next to Alejo, with the privilege of listening to his iPod with him.  With his twinkle-eyes and long eyelashes, he is trying to practice his English because he hopes to go to USA for his final year in university.  We all just stopped for a bottle of water and the bus driver is one of the people flirting with me.  Geh.  And yet it’s cool realizing that I’m sitting next to an Ecuadorian who I  don’t think of as lower, third-world, or separate as a human being.  I hope I take this with me for the rest of my life.

Now I am in the cutest little cottage for the night, and we are watching Paranormal Activity in Spanish while the three of

One of the Artisan's Lanterns at our Cottage Resort

Feasting for Dinner, every night

us take turns in the bathtub.  There is a fridge, kitchen counter, stove, utensils, bunk-bed and double bed and a brick fireplace… and the bathtub is called a Jacuzzi.  Quite a change from fiddling with hot water tap to alternately burn and freeze till I can rush to the coarse covers of my cot at night.

The morning wasn’t going so well, but it got better after a two-hour talk by a lady who thought very highly of the potential of women in the community, and was determined to talk directly to me.  It at least held my attention and I was surprised at how much I understood: however, it would have been quite awkward if she had discovered I hardly speak any Spanish.  Understanding it is different than speaking, but it’s alright because on different levels I am doing both.  I use some words more than I hear them, and sometimes I use fewer words than I know. But I’ve adopted a universal phrase from a German friend who spoke no English: poco a poco.Every thing will happen ” little by little.”

Priyanka Rao