Saturday, February 25, 2017

Guinea Pigs, Eggs and Culture

Day 5: Day trip to Otavalo to the Jambi Huasi Clinic, Market and Waterfall🌎

Hey guys, welcome back to the blog! Boy, do we have a lot to tell you about today! We started our morning off by driving a couple of hours into another Ecuadorian city called Otavalo. On the drive we had learned about the beautiful roses🌹🍌 and bananas that are exported from here. Being close to the equator definitely has its perks for these goods!  We also got to stop at a small shop where they had good views and alpacas!🐐 Here are a couple of shots!

Our first stop was an indigenous clinic called Jambi Huasi. At this clinic, they do a mixture of western and traditional medicine. We learned about the local indigenous culture with regards to their marriage traditions, religious practices, birth practices and their lower equality. While at this clinic, we watched two different demonstrations of traditional versions of diagnostic testing (think x-ray). The first was using an egg.🍳 This required the elder woman to tap a raw egg around someone's body and once finished she would crack it open to see if there were any discrepancies. Luckily both of our volunteers were told that they were healthy! The second diagnostic testing required the sacrifice of a guinea pig. This was similar to the egg test except the elder woman would use the guinea pig and tap it along someone's body. After this, the elder woman sacrificed the guinea pig🐭, and depending on what she and the shaman would find inside would be the diagnosis. It was an honor to take part in such a traditional part of this medicine and something that we will never forget! The staff told us that they perform these diagnostic testings very often and you have the option to continue on and seek western medical assistance if desired.  💊

After leaving the clinic we spent a few hours browsing the large, well-known local market in the city and may or may not have overloaded ourselves with souvenirs. Our tour guide had told us that it is one of the biggest markets in South America and that almost everything that is sold there is made by hand. Not only did we shop till we drop, but we fed the stray dogs treats🐶 and gave out beautiful handmade dresses to some little girls we met!👭

Our last stop on the way home, was to see a beautiful waterfall. We will never get tired of the tropical scenery here. As a side note, it is currently "festival" weekend here in Ecuador and at pretty much every turn you make we saw someone squirting a water gun/ foam gun at us!💦🎉  It definitely made things interesting when our group decided to take part in the fun!

It has been a great day full of culture and experiences we will never forget. On to another day tomorrow of excursions to the Mindo Cloud Forrest and Quilotoa Lake! Stay tuned!🗻


1 comment:

  1. Love reading your posts and seeing the pictures. Sounds like a great experience.