The last two weeks I have passed the time with my lovely and welcoming Ecuadorian relatives. It has been a dream since my childhood to know the places, people and culture that my grandfather was born into and left over fifty years ago to come to the U.S., so this was an especially meaningful part of my trip to Ecuador. I stayed with my mother’s cousin Vicky, daughter of my Abuelito’s sister Maria Rosa. I met lots of cousins, aunts and uncles, but spent the majority of my time with Vicky, her husband Fernando and their three children. Andrea is 26, Vicky Sue is 20 and Fernandito is 14.
They live in a gated community in a beautiful area a few miles outside of the city. During my stay with them they showed me around Guayaquil; we went to the Cathedral, Parque de las Iguanas, El Malecon (a boardwalk lined with simple attractions like old train cars, ice cream stands, fountains, mini-monuments etc.) and El Parque Historico.
Over the weekend they took me to a couple of beaches I wanted to visit- Salinas, Punta Blanca and Montanita. The sun there is extremely strong- but I used 50 SPF and didn’t burn!
I spent time with my Great Aunt Maria Rosa, who spends a lot of time putting puzzles together and is adorable. I also went to classes with my cousin Vicky Sue who is studying jewelry design and is incredibly creative and talented. I went to church with Vicky, who is very active at Santa Teresita, the family parish just a few blocks away. Fernandito and I did some cooking together; we made lemon bars and chocolate chip cookies! In general I was able to relax a lot and enjoy getting to know the family and improving my Spanish through long conversations. All in all it has been a lovely stay. I will try to do a last post in the next couple of days to close out the blog. Thank you all for reading!