It has been an unexpected gift to get to know the indigenous family that has been living in our development. Rodrigo, the young father of three sometimes battles the bottle and his culture doesn't know how to help him. His dutiful wife Rosa is the persona of resolute caretaker of their children. She is the glue that keeps this family functioning. The children, Sebastian (13), Estephania (11), and Eva (8) are products of dysfunction. They are in most ways like all other children. They love to play. They love to laugh. They know when to stay away from Dad and they know their mom is the boss. They are also sponges to receive all the love you can give them. There are many families like this in Ecuador.
Rachel and I eschewed our normal routine this morning in favor of an early morning walk down our lane. I think we realized how much we'd been missing. Early morning is our favorite time of day. The mountains around us were glorious. The songbirds were in an audition for prime time. Having Doggie waiting for us just outside our back door was proof he wanted in on this too.
Some day I will tell you about how we fell in love with Doggie, but for now its just about the walk. It was clear that Doggie had a specific agenda in mind this morning. As we left the front entrance to Yanapamba with Doggie we met the lovely indigenous children, Sebastian, Estephania, and Eva, all on their way to school. Doggie seemed delighted that he had brought together his favorite families for a walk. He was now in charge of our protection (and entertainment) as we walked down the lane.
Some time ago little Eva had run up to me unexpectedly after we were playing frisbie and she just hugged me as if never to let go. I was so stunned that I didn't know quite how to respond. We share so few words but the language of love and warmth is universal. I promised myself I'd never let a spontaneous gesture of affection pass by us again. As Eva came running up from behind I reached out for her hand and she drank it up and gave me a smile that made my day.