Friday, Dec 22, 2017

Busy Time of Year

What a crazy busy week it has been in Olon for us. Well, let me be more specific, for Heidi, Chase, Easton and any friend or stranger who happened upon our door step. Heidi was in full steam ahead finishing her 1000 painted rocks to make 100 Ric Rock Roe bags to pass out to the local kids. It became apparent this week she needed help, so inside the Gorishek casa a South American sweat shop was born.

Chase and Easton were given rocks to paint. Our friend Michelle was given rocks to paint and bags to make. From afternoon until late into the night, under the glow of white fluorescent lights, in an Ecuadorian heat, these people painted, toiled, and sweated all week long. Why didn’t I paint? I can’t draw a one legged stick man without arms, but it appears my sons inherited their mother’s artistic touch. I did cook dinner each night to ensure the help was fed and could keep working. 🙂

They turned out pretty great I think….

Painted Rocks Drying Under Our Terrace











Chase and Easton Lend a Helping Hand











Santa has his red sack filled with toys, and Heidi has her plastic tote filled with fun for all the girls and boys…

A Tote Filled With Fun

Three-In-A-Row as the Ecuadorians Call Tic-Tac-Toe

Local Present Giving

Heidi went with her girlfriends to a local communa (community center) to pass out some of her tic-tac-toe games along with other wrapped presents for the kids gathering there.


In some ways it was a challenge with the gifts and kids. I have tried to keep it real in this blog and unfortunately this is one of those real events. The local men who organized the event did their best. This is a 3rd world experience though in action. There were not enough wrapped presents for all the kids. Some kids were not allowed to have a present because they didn’t attend the communa, yet every kid in the community knew something was going on and they were there looking through the glassless windows and standing in the open doorways.

For those of you who know my wife, someone telling her certain kids can’t have a present just wasn’t going to fly. She gave her Ric-Rock-Roe bags to little girls tugging her arm who were not part of the communa and not part of the gift giving. Even for the communa kids, presents ran out. One of the ladies Heidi was with went to her car for a $5 bill to give one of the kids. I wasn’t there, but honestly it sounds like it was a cluster.

Life Isn’t Always Jolly

Why am I sharing this? It is part of the reality of life for kids here in Ecuador. There is not equity. Some kids get some things and others get nothing. Think about it. In the US we make sure every kid gets a participation trophy. It doesn’t matter how well anyone played. We do not let gifts or food items come into a classroom unless there is one for every kid.  This doesn’t happen here. Life isn’t fair. These kids know it. They grow up living it, and yet I wonder in the long run if they aren’t better off for it? What I do know is that it’s hard to watch (for Heidi) and to hear (for me). And who am I to make any judgments about it?

The Roadhouse Rocks

We enjoyed a great night out this week at the Roadhouse. They prepared a special Christmas dinner for the menu. It was some of the best turkey I have eaten. There was stuffing, potatoes, a shredded meat dish with nuts and a date-like fruit in it. The entertainment was lively and fun. Overall Darcy and Olga did an incredible job providing a great experience for whoever was smart enough to show up.

Christmastime Sunsets

The sunsets are amazing this week. We get a front row seat from our terrace at this time of year as the sun floats into the sea directly in front of us. It isn’t a snow covered Spruce tree, but is makes for a beautiful Christmas just the same.

Merry Christmas from Olon everyone!