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Published: March 2nd 2014
Heading to the ranch for the first time.
To give you some background on the journal below we were volunteering at a ranch in Ecuador in exchange for a free place to stay. We were only required to work 2 hours per day. The ranch had recently been purchased by an English couple who needed people to look after the place until they were able to return from England. I absolutely loved my time at the ranch!
March 30th, 2013
This morning we had a lovely breakfast of fried potatoes with onions, peppers and scrambled eggs, it was delicious. After breakfast we all agreed to forgo our 2 hours of work today and go to the beach in Canoa. We walked down the very muddy road to the paved road where we found a local woman waiting. She informed us that the bus had just recently went by which meant we would have to wait for quite a while. We tried to hitchhike but no one picked us up. Finally the bus came and it was packed with people but they let us ride on the roof with cargo. This is the kind of thing I would never do back home but here you don't
have much of a choice. We needed a ride into town and didn't have all day to wait around. The ride was a little scary but I did enjoy the nice views and I tried not to think too much about where I was. We ducked a few times to make sure we cleared the tree branches such a different life here.
Once in San Vicente we waited a bit for a bus to Canoa. We were happy that we got seats on the bus. During the drive we stopped for some sort of police checkpoint which took much longer than it should of. We were all a little annoyed because we only had so much time before we had to be back to catch the last bus back home. We did eventually arrive in Canoa and we had lunch and a drink at a place on the beach. They had wifi too which was nice since we hadn't been on the net for 5 days.
We went down to the beach and swam. You could walk forever because it was quite shallow but I enjoyed the fact that there weren't killer waves and
that I was getting some relief from the heat. The water was quite warm in the ankle deep level but it cooled down a bit as you got deeper. We lounged around on the sand and I really enjoyed that we were at the ocean.
We picked up a few food supplies and eggs so we could make deviled eggs for Easter. Just as we finished the bus came by and we hopped on. It was nearly full, we stood in the front of the bus. I was holding a bag of eggs since they don't come in cartons here. I asked Rebekah to hold onto them since she was sitting by the driver. They probably would have been smashed if I had kept them. The trip back to the ranch was uneventful and all of the eggs made it in one piece =)
We got back and fed the animals, picked some limes, started a fire and sat around talking cooking and playing cards. Such a lovely evening as always at the ranch.
March 31, 2013
Easter morning was like any other on the farm, breakfast and then work.
As I picked snails off the Pinon that was recently planted on the fence line locals came by in a larger number than normal. I smiled thinking that they, like we would be back home, were gathering together for the holiday. I said hello and one of them looked in my bucket curiously. It may have seemed quite strange to them that we were working on Easter but we actually had to make up for not working much the day before. I also cleaned Carmelita's bedding and hosed off the porch in an effort to make sure ring worm wasn't around. We took a brake and were disappointed with the terrible watermelon we had but disappointment vanished when we figured out the horse loved it. I have never seen a horse drool so much, highly entertaining to watch.
We began to prepare our Easter meal which consisted of roasted potatoes, pan fried chicken since we have no oven, deviled eggs, salad and wine. It was quite good. Jason was a cook back home and his potatoes were delicious. Everyone liked my eggs despite the fact that we didn't have pepper, A difficult thing to find here. It
really was as good of an Easter as I could ask for. We ate outside in the shade and it was a beautiful sunny day, birds chirping and all seeming right in the world for the moment.
The next morning Rebekah and Jason left, we were sad to see them go. As I was cleaning the horse water trof I heard a hello in an unfamiliar voice. I looked up to see a newcomer. I greeted her, Debbie of Scotland. She had left her bag at the river over the road, she couldn't get it across. We asked Craig if he could get it for her which he did. Debbie was meant to sleep in the Casita but it was more than a rustic place and after seeing rat poop on the mattress she decided the dorm would be better. We showed her around and soon our work was done for the day. Dan and I headed into town for water and food. Craig left with us, his last day at the ranch too. We waited for an hour for the bus and couldn't get anyone to pick us up hitchhiking. The rest of the day was
Don't worry she's all better now.
pretty uneventful, I turned in early as I was quite tired.
The remainder of the week was uneventful and lovely. Working on the ranch, another trip into town. Devouring ice cream and the bit of time on the internet. A squished "bus" ride. Wednesday night brought us a new guest from Austria, Eva pronounced Ava. We were happy to have a new person. Debbie made us all chili for dinner and we played rummy, I stomped them all 😉 Life at the ranch is quite wonderful.
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