(1) Standing on a rocky path and looking out at a country where the green mountains push high into the blue sky, the valleys run deep into the craggy earth and the world I otherwise knew all but disappeared.
(2) Falling asleep on the black sandy shores of an island only to awake an hour later to find a sea lion had crawled up out of the water to snooze a few feet away.
(3) Starting an international journey alone and ending it with newfound friends who can make me laugh until my stomach aches and my eyes tear.
(1) Being too intimidated by Frommer's exaggerated warnings of blatant thievery to venture out of the hotel the first night beyond 5pm. Apparently I am still a little bit like my mother (insert grumbling here).
(2) Awaking alone on a black sandy beach as my belly cramps made a surge for an exit. I curled up off my back, grabbed my knees and there with a sea lion snoring to my right, I wretched scrambled eggs and toast and marmalade.
(3) Standing in the crowded streets of the Otavalo market, spending ten minutes bartering with a native over the price of a backpack for my niece only to realize the change she returned to me matched the starting price, not the agreed upon price. It seems me flashing five fingers in quick succession did not translate.
There are some fun pictures and some funnier stories. But I am tired and my throat feels scratchy and my laundry bag is overflowing with filthy clothes. In other words, a traditional Paige post is pending.