Mission Completed, Vacation Started

It was a busy 7 days at St. Ines hospital! Our team assessed, chose, operated on and somewhat rehabilitated 32 people. It was wonderful to hear their stories and know how grateful they were. One young woman said she had given up on her dreams. Now with her new hip she has hope and will be forever grateful that her dream of walking her kids to school and walking to the park to see trees will come true. Really makes wishing for thinner thighs and less cellulite seem superficial and trivial.

Yesterday was a busy day for the Physio team, which included Kathy. Not only was she a translator and photographer, she became physio-assistant extraordinaire. Jeanine and I, exhausted from the day and the repetition, forgot one patient in a wheel chair after taking her back to her room after walking stairs with crutches. Kathy transferred her safely back to bed! Oops.

Most patients did extremely well although I will worry about Marianna. She looked like an uncoordinated octopus when trying to ambulate with crutches. (to be fair she has one leg shorter than the other and needs her other hip fixed next year ).

This morning we left Cuenca and flew to Quito. After saying goodbye to our team, Kathy and I met the driver to take us to Hacienda Cucin in San Pablo de Lago. ( I just had to ask Kathy where we were!) It was a 90 minute drive north of Quito. A gorgeous drive and we stopped at the equator and did the touristy picture having one foot on each side of the equator. Our driver’s name was Angel, but he drove like a devil. My seatbelt’s function was to keep me on MY side of the car.

The hacienda is a 17th century monastery. Although Angel said the actual monastery is closed now and was never a monastery?! Either way this place is beautiful.

Hacienda Cucin

Hacienda Cucin



We took a 20 minute drive to Otovalo, known for its markets and crafts. Kathy and I had a great time taking photos. Some friendly men invited us to join them for a drink in the market, which I thought was so sweet. A few minutes later I was just looking at one old ladies items for sale (camera NOT out) and she started yelling at me in Spanish to “Get! Go away you! Get!” She also toothlessly hollered a few other words I couldn’t directly translate but I clearly understood!

IMG_4846 IMG_4847 IMG_4845 IMG_4816 produce is huge, Otavalo market IMG_4783

Sure looking forward to some wine and a good night sleep in the garden cabin. Tomorrow we head to the cloud forest. Sure hope it isn’t cloudy there!

Our cottage at Cucin

Our cottage at Cucin

Cheers from Tanya’s iPhone

Categories: Ecuador | 3 Comments

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3 thoughts on “Mission Completed, Vacation Started

  1. Bevan

    Have a wonderful time in the hopefully sunny cloud forest! Your boys miss and love you. XO

  2. Jennifer Lomas

    Sounds like you’re having an amazing adventure, and really making a difference too! Sorry I didn’t realize you were headed off on such a special trip when I saw you guys in early April 🙂 Anyway, looking forward to hearing more stories – keep ’em coming. And lets make sure we get together once you’re back!

  3. Marilee

    Sounds like a real adventure. We are still experiencing winter!

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