Right now I’m pretty much in full Ecuador freak out.
By which I mean I’m a little stressed about getting all my ducks in a row before I leave for Ecuador on Monday morning, not some new kind of dance or anything. Just thought I should clarify after the whole “hot garbage” debacle this week.
I have an extra large, very empty suitcase sitting in my bathroom and some very sporty cargo pants and long sleeve outdoorsy-type shirts that are just waiting to be sprayed down with the high-powered mosquito spray I ordered from Cabelas a few weeks ago. I don’t know what I’m looking forward to the most, dodging the mosquitoes in the rainforest or getting to dress like P for two days in a row.
But I still need to go to the grocery store and Target and load up on Immodium AD because, you know, I’m going to South America and here’s hoping I don’t need it but that’s not the kind of chance you want to take. Especially after I read in my travel guide that one of the local delicacies is roasted guinea pig. As in a guinea pig.
I think I’m going to pass.
Although I bet it tastes like chicken.
And since I have Ecuador on my brain or en mi cerebro as they might say there, (I have no idea if that’s right) I thought about a discussion I had with Gulley’s boys the other day.
I picked Jackson and Will up from school a couple of weeks ago. We were catching up on all the important news, who played with who at recess and what they served in the cafeteria that day, when I asked if they knew I was going to Ecuador and the Amazon Rainforest in November.
Will said, “OH MEL! My friend Trey in my class loves piranhas. Can you bring him back a piranha?”
“Well. That might be a little hard to do. I’m kind of hoping I don’t come across any piranhas. Plus, what if they bite me?”
Will responded, “They won’t bite. They don’t really eat people, Mel.”
But that’s when Jackson interrupted. And here is a side story that may not seem relevant right now, but bear with me. Gulley and I have always laughed at Nena’s (that’s Gulley’s grandmother if you’re new here) ability to go straight to worst case scenario. She has a gift. And she likes to bring you right to her level of worry. Nena isn’t the person you want to call if you have a hangnail and are slightly concerned and looking for a little reassurance. She is a walking WebMD and will take you straight to a place of total despair. Calling Nena is worse than googling your symptoms on the internet.
For example, Gulley has repeatedly told me about a time she had a pimple on her face and Nena told her not to pick at it because she knew a girl who did that one time and the pimple got infected and SHE DIED.
Nena has known people who have died from toothaches, mosquito bites, ingrown hairs, and over-plucking their eyebrows. She also once knew a girl who agreed to break up with her boyfriend because her parents promised they’d buy her a pet monkey instead. That has nothing to do with this story, but it always makes me laugh so I felt like I should throw it in. It’s like a bonus.
Anyway, Will had just informed me that piranhas don’t eat people when Jackson piped up and announced, “YES THEY DO, WILL. THEY DO EAT PEOPLE. I just heard a story the other day about a bus driver that was driving a bus full of people down to the Amazon River and he fell asleep at the wheel and drove the bus right into the river and everyone on board got eaten by piranhas. THEY ALL DIED.”
It was like Nena had just climbed in the back seat of my car.
I have no doubt Jackson’s story will bring me great comfort as I ride ON A BUS DOWN TO THE AMAZON RIVER next week.