But you wouldn’t know it by the amount of people who think it has started already…. Ecuador, and many other Latin American countries (like Brazil, which has the most famous Carneval) are going to start celebrating Carneval this weekend. This coincides with Mardi Gras, and the amount of debauchery is considerable no matter where you are.
Typically, in most places around Ecuador, people will soak unsuspecting passersby with water, be it through bucket, hose, tub, or water balloon. Cuenca is no exception. Just the other day, I was walking down the street, and three teenaged girls all were being quite friendly as I passed by, saying, “Hello!” Being quite cheerful, and impressed by their desire to practice their English, I said, “Hello!” right back to them and continued on my way. Two seconds later, I heard a THWAP, followed by a THWAP, followed by a THWAP, and suddenly felt my back to be quite soaked. These three worldly teenagers duped me, and pelted me with water balloons. My thoughts of “Oh, how impressive!” were quickly replaced with, “Oh, you little shits!”
Then, yesterday, I was headed out to Paute, a country town where my boss has a house. The driver of the car was driving with her window down, and I’ll be damned if some other little shit didn’t throw a bucket of water through her window, soaking me in the back seat from my head to my lap.
This reminded me of the time when we raced back from Kevin and Travis’ house near Baltimore to our house in Falls Church in order to arrive before an already angry Joey P. The plan, of course, was to climb onto the roof of the house so we could dump buckets of water on his head as he entered the house. These plans backfired, as he managed to sidestep the falling water. I was not one to let a sidestep get in the way of a soaked Joey P, and I raced back into the house so I could meet him with a full bucket of water at the front door as he walked in. This was not well-received, and I fully admit, a good 4 or 5 years later, that I too was a little shit at that point.
In the attached picture, you see yours truly on the wrong end of an escobazo, provided by the daughter of one of my co-workers who does not like that I only speak English with her. This picture is not the most becoming, as it makes me look somewhat chubby still (I guess I still am), but I feel that learning vocabulary is often best done through pictures and actions. So, I am not going to let vanity get in the way of your learning!