Sunday, March 3, 2013

Quito chronicles - 6

Since I gave into the grey in my heart, I've pretty much not written any news from Quito. So this is a newsy, kinda, one. Since I last wrote, general elections took place, and PAIS, the dominant left party won overwhelmingly, and quite expectedly, too. But the night of the elections when people simply spontaneously gathered in front of the PAIS HQ in Quito, and well, of course, Correa was ready for another term explicitly and implicitly as there's much work that he has begun in his first official term, and so had a stage prepared, etc. It was great, the people's zeal, people's trust, people's emotions -- simply over elections that have really reflected their choixe. The cars on the streets wouldn't stop honking, almost every car with  a green flag of PAIS waving in the air. Oh, the quiet and certain cheer in people's eyes I met on the Ecovia, public transport, their quiet, but so real joy. Over elections going right. Which of course, took me in the opposite direction, made me think back to 2008 and the atrocities that happened on the streets and detention centres of Ulaanbaatar city. Abhorrent stress positions that detainees were made to sit in the yard of Yarmag detention centre were filmed and broadcast online by Eagle TV. I shuddered. Over 800 arrested, detained over the curfew as well as the proximity to the centre of violence, then MPRP, present MPP, HQ which was looted and arsoned by the crowd that went mad at the sight of premature elections victory celebrations by the dominant political party which has always been accused and proven of buying votes and other unethical dealings before and during the elections. When the crowd sang songs, like about Che Guevara, like Venzeremos, Socialist international, etc. I felt so moved. I had a chance to feel the collective spirit of people empowered, of people on the path of big changes, of people united in that zeal towards the affecting those changes. Latin America always lured me in terms of its socio-political processes and traditions that are singularly Latin American. A different political spirirt of people, if you will.

Apart from the elections, I began my Spanish classes again after about two weeks of nothing as it was a holiday period, and been, still, working on the report, preparing for the radio series, networking for that. And that's been pretty much it. Nutshell. Of course, I'm still meeting new people, making friends, connecting intellectually and spiritually, and I'm learning to navigate these new surroundings waters. Love my colleagues, their commitment and zeal, their tireless spirit, their deep empathy, their brilliance dedicated solely to trans issues. And I'm getting to work with them! There are some projects on their way that will keep the PT floating for awhile, but there is a need to sit down and start thinking of re-organising, re-structuring in the best possible way to maximise outputs for the community. I've had a very eye-opening experience in terms of the team's team-working abilities at the Centre. The report must go out now as it is, with some areas uncovered, it's too late, it looks like, to collect data. And I'm working on the end part now.

Yes, today the first edition of the South-Trans-South went on air live. It was a bit scary, but nonetheless, remembered. And then we got stuck in the middle of nowhere on our quest for the native chicken soup :)) The beauty of that road, with gorgeous waterfalls, fogs drifting over the greenery, the high mountains, some volcanoes, from arid to evergreen rainforest in five minutes. Mesmerising. Soul-melting.

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