Who Was That Unmasked Man?

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What is it about a man in uniform? Or the sighting of a famous actor that turns otherwise sensible movie-lovers into mush?

“Did you see him?” asks my guide, Giovanna.

“See who?” I wonder.

“Well, you know, I was having breakfast in the dining room. At first I wasn’t sure it was him. So I asked my friend who it was. He told me the man was supposed to be a famous actor but he didn’t know who.

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Off to Otavalo

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Our eyes meet.

We don’t speak each other’s language, but that doesn’t prevent us from connecting.

Her glance moves from my face to the camera hanging around my neck. “Go ahead,” she seems to say. “Go ahead.” “Can I take your picture? You want me to to take your picture?” I ask. “Yes, go ahead.” So I do. I wait for the pitch to purchase one of her creations, but it never comes.

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Quito Rising

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“Do you speak Spanish?” asks the unsmiling custom agent.  “Well, no, not really, just a few words,” I say.

“So what’s wrong with Spanish?”

Uh-oh.

“Nothing, nothing at all. I love Spanish! But . . . ” I begin to offer a host of excuses before I catch the twinkle in his eye.

“Enjoy your stay in Ecuador.”

Ecuador .

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