05 July 2012


Quitoloma was a struggle in many ways. The heat of the sun was brutal, the hike was incredibly difficult, and I was upset that the tall grass fields covering the mountain made for a more comfortable bed than the bed I sleep in now (or the bed I have back home, for that matter).

That’s no good. I need a grass bed when I get home.

The ride back was in one of the trucks, but on the way back we encountered a landslide which blocked our road. So we spent a few hours cleaning that and getting the bus out when it got stuck. It was intensive work, but immensely rewarding when we cleared the bus of the mud and dirt in which it got stuck.

Dinner included fried plantains, so my life was good. Later when discussing project ideas, I found out that Eric does statistical analysis. Angus and Daniel are involved in resistence cultures, so between Angus/Daniel & Vanessa (in the lab)/Eric, I’ll have lots to research this summer.

We had an emergency staff meeting today, where we addressed some problems which had come up this week. Ryan got upset at the specific outing of people’s misbehavior, and I shared his sentiments. Sam later shot me down for talking to him about it later, and I see his perspective (which he described as a need to identify and deal with specific issues immediately), but I personally disagree with his position that we should therefore name people and point out exactly what they did wrong in a group of 30-40 people. It sets a bad first impression of the student for the other staff, which the student now needs to overcome - which is impossible given the number of staff members.

This doesn’t bother me as much as it bothers Ryan, who said he was willing to quit the field school over this treatment of a student’s privacy. Personally, I’m living in a room with 7/8 other people, so… “what privacy?” is my response to that.

Later, Angus and I discussed Ecuador’s political and social history and the formation of the rose plantations and that industry (by which I mean that he schooled me on Ecuadorian history). We got cut short by quiet hours, but will hopefully continue that discussion later.

If you have something to say about this, contact me