My Experience with Water in Ecuador and Why I Love It!
by Susan Fitch
(Barrio Santorum, Parroquia Vilcabamba, Provincia Loja, Pais de Ecuador)
I live in the countryside (campo) in Southern Ecuador. Living in the campo allows me to experience tranquility and serenity I have never experienced anywhere else on this planet - and I have traveled abroad a lot. Going to sleep at night with my windows wide open, I listen to the braying of burros, the neighs of horses and the songs of the Rontedores - an owl only found in Ecuador that sings at night. That's right. An owl that doesn't "hoot". Rather it sings a lullaby to those animals and humans who live in the campo.
I also love where I live because I live in in a community (barrio) that it about 99.9% Ecuadorians and from them, I have had the opportunity to develop lifelong friendships with people who are always "there" for me when I need it most. Twice my neighbors got me to an emergency room when I became critically ill, and I have done my best to help them in return both by helping their children with learning English, volunteering with the barrio school and holding a fundraiser to help a family who had no inside plumbing and who slept on dirt floors that enabled them to build a home with all of the necessary amenities that most poor human beings could never have.
I also have been blessed in that as I am a single woman who has health issues, I was adopted by a wonderful Ecuadorian family who looks out for me in every aspect of my life.
Because of these incredible blessings that have been bestowed upon me by Ecuadorians, I hope those considering a move to Ecuador think seriously about living amongst Ecuadorians in that by doing so, you will be able to experience the REAL Ecuador rather than the one that exists in the towns full of expats. After all, if you move to Ecuador, why would you want to live with non-Ecuadorians. If you wanted to do that, you could have the same experience in your home country!
Finally, water might be contaminated in some places, but I'm happy to say that the water that comes from my tap comes directly from the upper elevations of the Andes here in Southern Ecuador and had no additives at all. As well, Ecuador has over 2,000 rivers and streams have headwaters in the Andes mountain range, flowing therefrom either westward toward the Pacific Ocean or eastward toward the Amazon River. Because of this fact, it is one of the places many kayakers dream of visiting. Finally, there are so many waterfalls in Ecuador, that counting all of them is impossible. But if you want to see them, then you definitely must visit the Highway of Waterfalls in Baños. Baños is famous for its abundance of water, particularly the mineral-rich thermal baths from which the town got its name. It is really a must-see for any visitors to Ecuador.
If you're curious about issues such as these, I believe it's important that you first investigate the areas you wish to visit by checking out pages on Facebook or via Twitter and ask these important questions.
Good luck in your travels to this paradise of a country where its Constitution protects all animals and flora and where there are the highest density of bird species on earth.