Jipijapa is one of the nearby towns about 30 minutes east of my town of Puerto Cayo. It is a winding drive inland through the mountains and is a place where a lot of municipal and commercial business is done. I have gone there to deal with things regarding my property, shopping, we took Tag to the vet there, etc. But today Robert was making a trip in and I asked to go along for another reason – to have my teeth cleaned! On one trip with my visa angels Jo & Tulia, Tulia was having a problem with a tooth and noticed a dentist office just off the square. She explored further and found a wonderful young couple were the dentists. I asked her to let me know later how her experience was and to find out how much it would be for a teeth cleaning. She gave a glowing recommendation and a few weeks ago Elaine went to have her teeth cleaned and was equally impressed, so today it was my turn (here, you can just walk in without an appointment to many doctors and dentists!) Robert graciously accompanied me to the office to translate my need (and take my picture) and then left to run his errands while I had the wonderful attention of these two doctors and a very good cleaning for $30! Even with my little Spanish and their little English, we managed to communicate pretty well (and clarify a few things upon Robert’s return). I even learned they have 5 cats!
Afterwards, we did a little shopping, then returned to the bus station and before departing, I enjoyed a very unique treat. Some time ago I read a post on my friends, the Carroll’s blog, about their bout with food poisoning while in Ecuador and the incredible healing properties they found in the coconut. Although I’ve always enjoyed coconut in the various ways we get it back home, I had never experienced the real, unprocessed version until recently. I had done a little research and learned that this fruit is just one of God’s amazing food gifts and among many other things, is anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-parasitic – that pretty much covers the whole spectrum! So I was excited when I came to Ecuador to finally have the opportunity to experience fresh coconut! All around the various towns you will find street vendors with carts and wares. The “coconut man” will take his machete and open the coconut, insert a straw and allow you to drink the wonderfully healthful coconut water. Once you are finished, he then removes the rest to give us a bag with the fresh coconut flesh to eat. It certainly does not taste the same as the coconut flakes we buy in bags back home, but it is good nonetheless and wonderful to know how good it is for me too! Here is a link to read more of the healthful properties of this amazing food: Coconut
After returning to Puerto Cayo, we met some tourists from Mississippi who were on our bus and just arriving into town. They have been traveling around Ecuador to decide if it is a place they might want to live and were stopping in Cayo for a few days. They ate lunch with us at our favorite restaurant and we referred them to several options for places they could stay. The rest of the afternoon was spent on the beach all the way through an amazing sunset and then later, a bonfire. I do have to say, for the most part, I really do love my life in Ecuador!