These holidays have left me feeling a little sentimental. I realized how long it has been since I was travelling in South America and am starting to think it’s time to get back. New Years in Ecuador was one of the most memorable times of my travels
I cannot believe it was two years ago that I spent the holidays at Casa Cuencana. It feels like a few months ago. New Years in Ecuador is so much different than in Canada. Like many Latin America countries it is a holiday for families and there are so many New Years traditions in Ecuador that I had never heard.
The one I liked the best was creating an effigy of something that happened in the last year that you would like to leave behind. For me this was releasing my anger toward Whatsherface, who was so mean to me when I was lonely in Mexico. But it also symbolized letting go of all of that baggage.
Cuenca at New Years is the closest I have ever been to a place resembling a war zone.
The effigies are stuffed with fireworks and lit as soon as it becomes dark. The night is saturated with sounds of laughter, fire crackers, music and car alarms going off. Many Ecuadorians jump over the fire once for every month to bring good luck. The fire gets pretty big so doing all 12 is brave. In the video a child and I go first because we have the shortest legs. I did it that year and it was a lucky year.
I’m not sure people in Toronto would be so keen for me to light a fire in the middle of the street to jump over.
Feliz Año Nuevo