18 On A Gap Year: Orange & Yellow

One of the most notable fruits I’ve tried for the first time in Ecuador has to be granadillas. They look like orange raindrops and are in the same family as passionfruit. The insides are similar to passionfruit in that the seeds are encased in a kind of goop, but it differs in color and taste. Granadillas are sweet and mild, and a favorite among the Southern Cohort! Above you can see Natalia with a bright orange bulge (that’s the granadilla).

I tend to associate orange with warmth, so in this gallery I’ve included times and objects that made me feel at home, included, and just content. This includes sunsets on Puerto Lopez, roasting marshmallows around a bonfire in Playas, making Neoguri ramen in my family kitchen, and the blanket my mom made for me before I left home. The song is Carry Me Home by Jorja Smith. I listened to it whenever I started to miss home (coincidentally the EP cover for Project 11 is also orange).

Countries change but the girl doesn’t! If you’re looking around and I seem to have disappeared, you can probably find me where there are dogs. Bingo is one of my many furry friends I’ve made in Ecuador. He is my brother’s adopted neighborhood puppy. My brother lives separate from us and actually only has one Shiba Inu (Nacho) and a black kitten (Leila). One day, a neighborhood dog (Princesa) showed up with two puppies. We have no idea who the father is, but now Nacho and Leila have a family of three joining them for supper every night!

Yellow is exciting!

Did you know Ecuador is known for their fresh fruit juices? My parents were so amped to learn this, almost as much as I was to see them after 5 months in a foreign country. We traveled all over Peru and Ecuador, trying new foods like cuy (guinea pig), llama, yellow watermelon, choclo (a breed of corn), and more! And of course we drank fresh juice by the tank.

I will probably never look at the color yellow the same again after being surrounded by a sea of yellow uniforms, walls, signs, and stationary for my apprenticeship. My school’s colors are black and yellow, so nothing within a 10 ft radius of the school gates could escape the infectious yellow glow of the institution.

PSA: You can get cheap $2 hamburguesas almost anywhere in Ecuador. If that’s not exciting, I don’t know what is. I can be spotted outside a function or discoteca eating (multiple) hamburguesas (in one night) while dancing to Dura by Daddy Yankee.

Sometimes Ecuador is orange, and sometimes Ecuador is yellow.


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