Catch up with Suzanne in Ecuador

Hi Suzanne, its almost halfway through your time in Ecuador, how are you getting on?

Welcome Suzanne

"¡Hola! I'm already over here in Quito, Ecuador for three and a half of my eight weeks. It was definitely a shock to the system initially with the language barrier and I was doing a lot of smiling and nodding at the beginning (I probably still am!) but I have already picked up a lot and am able to communicate one way or another!

The family I am staying with are lovely and are very patient with my attempts at broken Spanish! They were very welcoming right from the beginning with a lovely welcome sign in English and Spanish along with a delicious chocolate bar from the birthplace of chocolate - Ecuador! They have really made me feel like part of the family by including me in everything.

One of the oddest moments from my time here was when I noticed a framed jigsaw in the family sitting room. I was already here about a week before I noticed there was a hurley in the picture! It's a jigsaw of an Irish sitting room complete with a small Irish flag, a bottle of Guinness, a bottle of Power's whiskey and of course a few pictures of Pope John PaulII! It turns out the family randomly bought the jigsaw in an Ecuadorian shop and had no idea until I told them that it was of an Irish room! Such a bizarre coincidence!

 Irish Picture in Ecuador

This is my last week of Spanish language classes before I start my volunteering next week in the children's centre. I will be minding 3-5 year olds in the morning and helping 8-12 year olds with their homework in the afternoons. I really better knuckle down with my Spanish this week so that I'm able to do their homework myself!!

In between my classes at the weekends I've fitted in some nice trips with some of the other students I've met in the school to visit the beautiful countryside. I went ziplining across a canyon and went horse riding to the base of a volcano in Banos and climbed to a glacier at 5000m on the world's highest active volcano in Cotopaxi! I have had some amazing experiences here so far and I am sure there are still plenty more to come over the remainder of my time here!!

¡Hasta luego!"

Suzanne Mahoney