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El Museo Bahia de Caraquez- Ecuador

“Okay, write that down,” Hermoine said to Ron, pushing his essay and a sheet covered in her own writing back to Ron, “and then copy out this conclusion that I’ve written for you.”

“Hermoine, you are honestly the most wonderful person I’ve ever met,” said Ron weakly, “and if I’m ever rude to you again –“

“– I’ll know you’re back to normal,” said Hermoine.”
― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

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Study of Artifact – Watercolor – Museo Bahia de Caraquez-Ecuador

Sometimes ‘it’ is just not there, and until I have recovered from a ‘co-infection’ of dengue and chikungunya, even holding a pencil is difficult.  The fatigue continues as well.

Thumbing through a little notebook, I came across a sketch of an artifact that’s in the Jama Museum.  With paper and watercolors and pencils in hand this morning, I had hoped to spend an hour in the airconditioned museum and move forward with a more-seriuos study.  It’s just not going to happen – not until I am stronger!

Pencil sketch of artifact in Jama/Ecuador museum.

Pencil sketch of artifact in Jama/Ecuador museum.

Suffice to know that I am much better, but like many others in this Province, the recovery period is long and sometims painful.  When not moving, there is absolutly no pain, and after five of so minutes of walking, most of the pain has vanished.  I find myself walking like many others, with a shuffle-footed gait that avoids the flexing of ankles and knees!   Falling blood pressure disciplines me to sit down often.

Here in Jama, it’s customary to greet people with a handshake or a kiss on the cheek, depending if it’s a formal or informal greeting.  When passing the municipality building, I crossed paths with three or four people who shook my hand.  By the final one, I was ready to collapse…  Several friends/onlookers chuckled as I discreetly shook the pain from my hands/fingers after the person moved out of sight.

Chana in her little store/ Dec 2012

Chana in her little store/ Dec 2012

It’s sometimes nice to know there are partners in suffering, and when I entered my friend’s little shop, the aroma of menthol wafted from the room.  “Oh Chana!” I  greeted, “Oh Leee-sah,” she replied,, “Duele duele duele” (pain pain pain) she replied.   She then rattled in way-too-fast Spanish how the pain had worsened since I last stopped by the store.

For me, it’s best just to be still and allow the nature of this illness to run its course.  Thank goodness, using a keyboard is not painful, though it hurts to support the camera or hold a pencil or paint brush.

Here are a few hurried sketches from that same little notebook;  these were scribbled to catch a moment or an idea to use later.. or to later discard.  I’m glad now that I kept them!


Ceibo tree – pencil sketch


Ceibo sketch


Ceibos – pencil – while traveling by bus

You’ll know that I’m back to normal when posts and comments and flying colors start appearing more often!    There’s a chart at the end of this article on chikungunya, and it explains a lot.  Many of us here have hit that unexpected IGg response. (Rheumatologist: About Chikungunya)   I’ve learned a lot!

More soon.  Z