Otavalo Stories and Tips

Week 50 - Tight Trousers (Ecuador)

Chimborazo Volcano Photo, Cotopaxi, Ecuador

Well, I have to admit that this week has been a totally different week to previous weeks in Ecuador, for a number of reasons. On the positive side though, I have learnt many invaluable life experience lessons that will stand me in good stead later in life.

As there isn’t anymore school now for the next 3 weeks, I thought this would give me the chance to kick back my shoes and fully enjoy my new surroundings. Maybe even crack a few jokes and bond with my fellow teachers. Sadly my fellow teachers had other ideas and shipped me off to work in the day nursery. Maybe they were trying to tell me something!

First of all, babies at the present moment in time aren’t exactly the kind of thing I wake up in the middle of the night dreaming of. So when I arrived at the nursery and was sent straight upstairs to where all the babies were waiting to be changed and dressed, my face, if I’m honest with you, didn’t really light up with joy and satisfaction. Up until this moment I had never dressed another person in my life. Undressed, possibly, as I am an adult and have experienced contact with the female gender earlier in my life! Dressing a baby though is a completely different kettle of fish. How such tiny creations of nature can have so much strength and stubbornness when being made to do something they don’t want to do is something that I will never understand. Luckily though, to address the problem of dressing the baby I also found out that their arms are very flexible and can bend into positions that an expert of the karma sutra would be proud of.

Now, dressing the baby was the easy part, as when coming across the nappies, I have to say that I acted like a true man, and played dumb to what this amazing invention was. Even so, I am dumbfounded at how much mess can fit into these white bundles of joy. Projectile vomit I can deal with, but the visions of projectile diarrhoea I came across here is something that will haunt me to my dying day. I will save you the details!

Very important as well, which I certainly think is a fact that needs more publicity, especially with me, is that babies find sitting up under their own accord impossible. I realised this before it was too late, before the baby I was dressing fell off the bed. Although for a split second it was touch and go. I thank my parents for giving me the ability of quick reflexes (I’d definitely get a 20 for reflexes on Champ, that’s a certainty!).

After the amount of sh** I have seen this week it has put me off having my own children for the foreseeable future, and more importantly also put me off having the tendencies and urge of picking up children and swinging them around. This I also learnt the hard way. After picking up an energetic young boy, I quickly noticed that his happy smile had been replaced to a look that shouted discomfort. On seeing this I quickly stopped swinging him around and gently let him back into the gravitational pull of the Earth. Feet firmly on the ground I inspected the boy to see what this urgent problem was that he seemed to have. I saw a small stain on the inside of his leg, and politely took him to one of the female members of staff, where I explained that somehow in the previous few minutes, this darling of a child had had a small accident. On closer inspection though the female member of staff realised, that indeed he had had an accident, but calling it a small one was something of an enormous understatement. Some sort of brown substance had managed to work its way, not only down to and on his shoes but also up to his neck as well. I really have never seen anything like it, but from the scolding that the child got, I do think that he learnt his lesson, and me also.

All this happened on my first day, and I thought I had got through the worst of it until it was decided that we would take the children on an outdoor adventure to the local forest. There is one problem with trips to a forest in a 3rd World country, you are guaranteed of no toilet facilities. This message was brought home when one young girl came running up to me and confided that this moment was ideal for a bit of defecating. Finally deciding to face such problems head on, instead of pathetically handing them on to some other unsuspecting member of staff, I quickly rushed the girl to the side of the path where upon getting her trouser and pants down in time, she decided to drop her load straight into her pants. She must have seen the look of disgust and annoyance on my face, because she found the whole event very amusing. So did the other staff as they watched the Gringo chase a soiled child through the forest. Luckily for me it was a perfect one, so the mess was kept to a minimum.

During my week at the nursery, other than these incidences, I had a boy kick his shoe right between my eyes (very painful indeed!) and was left in the awkward position of being left alone with a room full of babies as their mothers came to breast feed. I honestly didn’t know where to look. I have never seen so many naked boobies in one room before, and I doubt I will ever see such a thing again. I have a feeling I was put in this position on purpose, due to my week of inadequate work performances.

I think the children also need some help with their English pronunciation, although as they are still all under the age of 4, I will let them off for now. All the children seem to have the tendency of repeating everything I say, although some words are far to complex for their basic vocabulary and pronunciation to cope with. One such word is ‘wait’. Now this may seem harmless enough, but say it to children here under the age of 4, and you met with a perfectly pronunciated ‘w*nk’ response. Now I can’t see any resemblance between these two words, but somewhere inside the mind of a child, they are indeed identical.

Apart from these lovely moments of experiencing the life as an Ecuadorian nursery worker, one part of Ecuadorian culture has come to my attention, and is something that is causing me a little concern. This concern is the ridiculously tight trousers that I have seen many women wearing here. Normally I would have absolutely no problem with this at all. I mean, up until recently I was also wearing ridiculously tight trousers, but that was more down to being overweight, than wanting to show off my pert ass. Many of the trousers that the women wear don’t seem to have been made correctly, as they seem to have left no breathing space in a very delicate part of the female anatomy. I’m sorry but in my opinion, camel toes are not the future of evolution and female sexuality.

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