thursday sept 27th

Thursday 27 September 2012

16:19 Went and bought my bus ticket to Yantzaza. There isn’t a 6am bus on saturday, so I had the choice between the 5 or 8…  Since I need to be there for 9. The 8 doesn’t cut it.  I have to go for the day to teach another day to the teachers.

5 am it is…. Now I have to figure out how to get to the bus station that early.

Wednesday 26 September 2012

12:53 Just booked my flights back to Ecuador. I will be in Ontario from the 15th to the 27th.
by Glenn Specht via Facebook

17:50 Wondering how many students will show up tonight… Two big football games tonight between local teams and teams from Brazil
by Glenn Specht via Facebook

20:14 Booked my return to Ecuador today. I do not understand how airline pricing works.

I ended up using but the exact same flights varied between $50 to $500 more depending on the site.

Just to see if it made any difference I played around with the return date ( I don’t have a date in mind, but I like to have a return paid for, in case….). By changing it a month I ended up with different routing… And a saving of over $125

In my routing it was important to me that I did not fly through the states… Having to clear customs twice is not my idea of a good time. And I also get to fly a longer distance with Air Canada. Hopefully the areoplan miles I get will add to the ones I have to get me some other flights

Tuesday 25 September 2012

16:18 He who works with his hands is a laborer. He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman. He who works with his hands, his head, and his heart, is an artist. –St. Francis of Assisi
by Glenn Specht via Facebook

21:48 Information- secrets- what do I know…..

In the past day I have been given information  about people both here in Ecuador and at home in Canada that may change their lives… Both for good and bad. I have been asked not to pass on this info, for various good reasons.

I always look at life changing and challenging  events and wonder how I would deal with them.

I hope that I would be strong, but when I look back on some and see the way I collapsed I am not so sure. Is this why I am more of a leaf on the river then a fish swimming against the current?

Some times I  try to make changes, to control things, but it seems to come in spurts, and then I float along based on the currents.


Monday 24 September 2012

15:07 First day back at school for a new cycle, and as usual the boss has thrown a curve at me.

I wanted to teach 6 hours a day, he has given me 5.  Ok not a big deal.  But he is trying to arrange another 2 hours with some teachers, at their high school.

I could use the coin and it will be interesting. We will see how this works out.


20:38 End of the first day… It gets tiring about now. I have the students doing a writing exercise so I fill the time writing this. I find that one of the most important things is to give students time to do the work….

Sunday 23 September 2012

7:49 I am waiting for a bus to take me back to Loja from Yantzaza. I have a bit of time…as usual I am way early

I have enjoyed my week here, it was warm, and relaxing…. Except for the stress of trying to deal with my domain renewal.

The teachers here were good to work with. They have a tough road ahead. They have to bring their English skills up to a very high level, without the infrastructure and training to accomplish this goal.

I try to help them as much as I can but in 20 or 30 hours you can’t teach skills that take years to acquire.


Places: Loja – Loja, Loja, Ecuador
        Yantzaza – Yantzaza, Ecuador

8:08 I am off to Canada in less then a month. I would like to say I am looking forward to it, but I am not.

The idea of seeing my parents is really good, and I am excited about that,  and it will be great to see friends again!

Just the thought of traveling, and the hassles of that are not exciting. I figure it will take me about 36 to 48  hours or so to travel from loja to Waterloo. This includes an overnight bus ride, waiting in airports, and a change of planes.

I am concerned about my change of planes… It is only 40 minutes which means I might make it, but I doubt my luggage will.  

I still have to book my return to Ecuador. This is something I need to do in the next week or so.

And then there is the funding. It never fails… Whenever I try and do some type of foreign exchange the cdn dollar VS the currency I am interested in is never in my favor.

The currency of Ecuador is the us$ and the cdn $ keeps climbing. Arrrrrgh

13:15 I arrived back at my casa in Loja safe and sound… To a nice cold rain.

As I sit here I realize I have not found the place I am looking for… Yet.

And what am I looking for? A place where I can be me, be comfortable and happy.

20:28 I am back in Loja…arrived to a cold rain. Getting ready to start another cycle of teaching in the AM
by Glenn Specht via Facebook

Saturday 22 September 2012

20:19 Planning my short visit to Toronto. i will be cleaning out a storage locker on the 16th of October..anyone interested in helping in exchange for free stuff? 🙂 Then I will be looking for a couple of places for couch surfing between the 22nd and the 28th…. also will be wanting to get together with people.. 🙂
by Glenn Specht via Facebook

Friday 21 September 2012

20:38 It was a warm day today…hot actually… High 30’s. I went for a walk in the morning that ended up being longer then expected.

I am a little “pink like a gringo”… Nothing serious but the sun can be intense here. Staying hydrated is critical for me… I learned my lesson about that from my run in with kidney stones… I won’t let that happen again!

I had a talk with my students tonight about continuing to teach them…they would like me to be here in Yantzaza. As I sit here in the park on a nice evening, I think I would like to make it work… Just not sure how.

It is interesting how dogs and people interact in Ecuador.

There are dogs that are pets… Usually lap dogs, that are carried or on a lead, but these are rare.

There are guard dogs… They are usually tied up or kept within a compound.

And then there are the dogs that run loose. The majority. I don’t know how many are street dogs and how many just wander from homes. They are street smart, they can deal with traffic… Most of these dogs do not interact with people, and people do not interact with them. No one pets these dogs, and they do not look for affection. Not sure about how I feel about this, but it seems to work for all.

Sept 09

Saturday 8 September 2012

It has been a feast for the senses so far this weekend in Loja

Last night I went to a concert by a 60 piece orchestra. They were good… Unfortunately the hall they play in does not match the talent. 

After we went to central park to experience the fireworks. The way fireworks are set off in this festival you don’t just watch them… No matter where you stand there are in front, behind, and above you…. And sometimes beside or below you.

I am now sitting waiting for a show to start at the Loja fair. I am very impressed with the production ( lights  stage and sound) basically as good as or better then you would find at events at Dundas square.

We left the show early… The talent did not match the venue….


Friday 7 September 2012

Today is a football match between Ecuador and Bolivia. It is a big deal!  A major part of the population is wearing yellow… Ecuador’s colour…Ecuador won, on a penalty kick.

sept 07

Friday 7 September 2012

9:54 Just booked my flight to YYZ… now working on my return to GYE
by Glenn Specht via Facebook


I am taking donations of Areoplan points from anyone who has some extra they can’t use before they expire…..



Thursday 6 September 2012

8:15 I had a talk with the boss yesterday. It looks like I have next week off.

The second week I am now supposed to be teaching in Yantzaza… Which is a business and mining town in the Provence of Zamora.

I have never been there, and it is further east , towards the amazon then I have been before. I am looking forward to it.

20:11 Last day of classes for a week, or more.   Really not sure what I will do with the time, but I am sure I will enjoy it

Today, before and between classes, I took some pics of the people getting ready for the fireworks tonight. After class I plan to go photograph the fireworks, which is way different ( and sacrier ) then fireworks in canada

Wednesday 5 September 2012

20:14 Found out I may be teaching for a week three hours east of here ie much closer to the amazon
by Glenn Specht via Facebook

Tuesday 4 September 2012

18:10 I still don’t know what I am doing next week.

I may either be teaching in Zamora or have the week off. If I have time off I am thinking I might explore some more of Podocarpus park. I have been thinking that camping or at least hiking would be cool.

The problem is lack of equipment.

I have started putting together a survival kit.
I usually always travel with a rain pancho I picked up years ago in Vancouver, which is great for wind and rain.  I have used it many time to protect myself or my gear

I also carry a flashlight… Wind up and solar powered.

With this idea I bought a compass today. I used to always have one in my camera bag, but I am not sure where it went. It did set me back $15, but it is worthwhile to have.  I will be practicing it’s use to make sure how to use it if I need it.

20:10 Ah crap.   I just found out claim for my trip to the hospital is being denied… Preexisting condition, hadn’t had my insurance long enough….. This will affect my plans
to head to Toronto.

23:12 2nd of 5 nights of fireworks…. loud in this valley… setting off all the car alarms…oh the sounds of Loja
by Glenn Specht via Facebook

Monday 3 September 2012

10:53 Things I learned this weekend.

Beer mixed with coke doesn’t taste bad… It actually improves the taste of pilsner…the Ecuadorian beer.

Scotch causes heart burn.  I used to have problems with heartburn… Sometimes really badly. Haven’t had this issue for a while. Had scotch on Saturday and felt the burn…and am still feeling it. I guess no more scotch for

11:01 Things are really hopping today in loja.

It is the first day back at school for primary and high school. The centro is filled with kids and parents in their clean uniforms.

In the poorer parts of the country there is a rule that children needs shoes to attend school. There are some gringos who have a project to provide shoes to those who need them. The charity and good works of “some” of the expat population is interesting.