I’m not going to write about how, this weekend, I got the horrible stomach ache that I have learned to recognize and dread here, and how I had to go to the doctor on a Sunday for immediate testing only to find out on Monday morning that Juan the Parasite still lives (which I knew the moment I woke up Sunday to the now all-too-familiar painful cramping), or how I found out that, not only do I have a parasite again (still?), but I also have a bad bacterial infection again (still?). I probably should have realized this while I was dancing my butt off on Friday and Saturday nights, or around the time someone tried to slash my bag strap for the third time since I’ve been here while I was shaking it at a sketchy dance club called Bungalow surrounded by about ten friends. But I didn’t. And for some reason, it was still an amazing weekend, for reasons I can’t fit into this blog entry. I guess I am unfazed by all this stuff now — the infuriating bag slashing attempts, the persistence of my unwelcome parasite (it’s been three months of having a parasite and bacterial infection now — what is going on?!). I’m on my third round of Cipro since I’ve been here, combined with bacteria-killing drugs, and I’m just tired of being sick, tired of taking medicine that makes me feel worse, and tired of not being able to be free of caution. But, like I said, I’m not going to write about any of that.
What I do want to focus on is a little positive somethin’ somethin’. Strangely, I think I’m the happiest I have been the whole time I’ve been in Quito! I am really enjoying myself, and really glad I’m here. I’ve met a bunch of new people, hung with several great Ecuadorians, and begun to consider other options for when I come home… Many things are making me happy and optimistic right now, and as I wake up to the first day of September (my birthday month — the big 27 is just around the corner!) I feel GOOD. Well, my stomach hurts, but besides that… I feel GREAT. I know what I want more than ever, and I’m going to go for it.
To celebrate, here is a little shameless plug that makes me proud and gives me hope. If I’ve learned anything from being here (well, I can’t even tell you how much I’ve learned — it’s a LOT!! We’ll get to it all another time), it’s that I want to write. I LOVE writing. And, no matter what, I am going to write. So, any little encouragement I get is appreciated.
A few weeks ago, I contributed to a South America ex-pat blog called Expat Daily News South America (my little article can be seen here). Then, yesterday, I found out I made this list of the Twitter Ten, or the top ten articles tweeted last month (as chosen by www.the-working-traveller.com).
I know this isn’t a book deal or a Pulitzer Prize, but hey — as they’d say on “The Jersey Shore” (ah shit, I’ve blown my cover by referring to that show TWICE now on TwT), I’m just doing ME. And even if “doing me” comes with three rounds of parasite pain, three attempted bag slashings, and several Quito ups and Quito downs, people out there keep reading about it. That is my little TwT victory.
Shoot, it’s 8:20 am. I’m taking Juan the Amoeba to work now. Outside, the clouds are crazy.. I can pretty much see the entire city of Quito from my apartment, and right now — with the clouds this high up — it looks like half the city is on fire and full of smoke. But I definitely see some blue sky peeking through…