Herman and hair loss

Ecuadorian bureaucracy is a joy for which there are apparently no limits. It started at the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where you need a mountain of paperwork, every ‘i’ dotted and every ‘t’ crossed, to obtain your visa. Yawn. It continued today in spectacular fashion. Last week we successfully obtained our full visas via the […]


Quito: A Day in the Life

My days in Quito have settled into an easy and surprisingly enjoyable routine – I am already feeling sad about swapping this city for the Galapagos (I know!) and even considering re-enrolling at the school again afterwards. This is how my day goes… 6.40am – Wake up. 7am – Say hola to Maria and devour her breakfast. 7.30am […]


Life in Quito

It occurs to me that with all my ramblings about my life here, I haven’t said one word about the lovely city of Quito. I’m not sure which bright spark decided to build a capital city in a valley surrounded by volcanoes, but it’s beautiful. I love walking out of Ruth’s house in the morning and seeing the […]


Salsa, salsa, salsa

“Who here has their boyfriend?” Silence. “Who here has their girlfriend?” More silence. “Excellent,” beams Edi, our short and slightly rotund middle-aged dance teacher, who is atonishingly fluid of the hip. “In my classes we make romance. Sometimes we make marriage.” Fat chance Edi, fat chance. The warm up for his salsa class was not […]


All men are bastards

I am today recovering from one of the most excruciating dinner table conversations I’ve ever endured. The nine of us (seven volunteers plus Monika and her son) went out for dinner to a lovely Ecuadorian restaurant. I was seated near the end, next to Pippa, beside Monika and opposite Pa-ool (his name really should be […]