No es bueno, no es malo, es simplemente diferente

It’s not good
It’s not bad
It’s just different

Alone in a really big herd in a foreign land… flipping the Sacagawea Golden Dollar that I got as change from my $10 this morning at McDonalds. The coin is dirty and worn, scuffed and carried in many pockets, held by many hands. I look at it and wonder… I wonder about the people, I just wonder…
Tres Leches (milk cake) is incredible. Ecuadorian coffee is strong but yummy. Two Tres Leches and a Cafe Americano runs $7.70 US, and in Ecuador they take US Dollars. Change is given in, well, change.
I’ve been thinking a lot, being here alone. I have time to think between hurried sessions of unbreaking things and cherished minutes on Skype with my family. First thing in the morning and last thing at night. I’m working on figuring out how to record them so I can squirrel them away for later… to play back when I get incredibly lonely or incredibly depressed.
As I ride the bus through the hills and traffic that greet every morning, I think about everywhere I have been. Everywhere my Eeyore has been. All of the highways and byways and airways that he has traveled with me. I think about how every mile has prepared me to be able to deal with this.
I watch the people walk or bike up huge hills, carry their babies, hold hands with their ninos and ninas, do their jobs, laugh at jokes and just carry on their lives. Conversational Spanish in the summer of 1995 has paid off some. I know that I’m ordering fish, how to greet people, how to just barely get by. I’m glad it is only for 12 days. The altitude headaches have gone away… which is good. I can mostly breathe. I love the buildings and the mountains. The people are incredibly friendly.

I think back to the first really international trip (outside of border towns) and I remember (then in reference mostly to bathrooms) that… It’s not good, it’s not bad, it’s just different. That sentiment (and It Is What It Is) has really carried me through. I just keep remembering that people are people… that it is what it is and there is rarely anything I can do about that… and… it’s not good (except maybe the Milk Cake and the Coffee), it’s not bad, it’s just different. And no matter how different different is, it still is what it is.

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