This phrase is a favorite of one of my friends, Robert’s, and it is VERY appropriate for life in Ecuador (in fact, I am fond of saying life in Ecuador is nearly always Plan B – and many times Plan C, D, E…you get the idea). Unfortunately, the unexpected often turns out to be something less than desirable. But yesterday, on my weekly trip to Manta, (for shopping, errands, lunch, etc.) I enjoyed a pleasant unexpected event.
The one hour drive between here and Manta actually takes you through several microclimates and one is a very small area of rain forest known as Pacoche. As the bus entered the area, our driver pulled over to the side of the road and stopped. At first, I thought it was to let a passenger on or off. But then several people started piling off the bus. So I thought maybe there was some kind of issue or trouble. But then I noticed the remaining people on the bus all looking out the window and up. So I crossed over to the other side of the bus and looked out as well to see right beside and above me a tree full of monkeys! This area is famous for the Ecuadorian Howler Monkeys (so named because they let out a screech or howl considered to be the loudest sound emitted by a primate), but normally you have to go on a guided tour deep into the forest and only then can you occasionally hope to spot any. But today they were right on the side of the road and I counted at least 10 in this one tree! Passengers were out taking pictures and we were all enthralled watching them hop around from limb to limb, climb, eat leaves and I even spotted a momma with her baby – he was climbing around near her and then hopped on to ride on her back! I kept thinking, “I sure wouldn’t see this on my shopping excursions back in Dallas!” Unfortunately, I didn’t have my camera with me, but here are a few pictures I pulled off the internet that were actually taken in Pacoche.
So sometimes, even in Ecuador, the unexpected isn’t a bad thing after all! 🙂