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There is a lot going on in Cotacachi Ecuador in the weeks ahead as the schedule below shows.

pound dollar chart 8-2012

First, if you are worried about being stuck with the US dollar in Ecuador learn about non dollar hybrid bonds with 21.5% upwards potential here.

Cotacachi Schedule

Cotacachi is a small Ecuadorian village but Merri and I ended up living there at the direction of a great Andean yatchak.  He explained to us that it  was in the spiritual center of the Andes.

The area may be sparse in population (though not far from two busy cities (Otavalo and Ibarra), although Cotacachi is not lacking in activity.   The beginning of September’s schedule in Cotacachi is proof of this fact.

First, the two week long La Jora festival is in progress.


Float in Cotacachi celebrating corn.

La Jora is a a celebration of the sprouting corn a symbol of unity and strength of the Andean people.

This ancient festival is celebrated every September in Cotacachi parades, with song and dance.

The roots of la Jora date back to the ancient Incan culture and celebrates the balance of life’s three elements from an indigenous point of view.

La Jora is a festival for the start of the planting season for corn, beans, chochos, and quinoa, and also the time when the community thanks the Forces of Nature for its Being.  The making and drinking of Chicha (a fermented corn beer) and remembrance of reciprocity with Mother Earth, friendliness with neighbors, and sharing that which is produced as a community.

You can see a schedule of events for this two week festival here.

Cotacachi Expat Meetings


Expats meeting at Inn Land of the Sun.

Each Friday and Saturday night there is a Cotacachi expat dinner. Expats meet in the fireplace room, enjoy a meal and talk about Ecuador news.

The menu for Friday August 24, 2012 will be Chicken Lasana with Baked Pineapple for desert.  $6.00 including service and tax.

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or Pizza (vegetarian, beef, chicken or pepperoni) plus Baked Pineapple . $5.00 including service and tax.

The menus for Saturday September 1, 2012 will be Surf and Turf Brochettes and Fruit Salad for desert. $6.00 including service and tax.

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or Pizza (vegetarian, beef, chicken or pepperoni) plus blackberry canalones. $5.00 including service and tax.

Beer $1.50 – Sparkling Mineral Water  $1.00 – Popcorn FREE

Telephone.  (593) 06-2916-009 – Telephone from US 336 – 792 – 4767 – Address: García Moreno 13-67 y sucre.

See more about Inn Land of the Sun here.

September 1 at Cotacachi Stadium: Wawa Runacunapak Chaski Raymi or the 5th Indigenous Children’s Olympic Games

The children arrive in Ornamental Park and walk to the stadium at 9am.

The Inauguration ceremony and games begin at 10 am.

Each year Jorge Quilumbaqui organizes these games for the children. Each child that wins a race gets a medal and the first prize winners get a $20 bill. The winning team gets a young bull to take home and share among their families. At the end of the Day of Games the children and their families share in a common meal.

The ‘Cotacachi Olympics’ stimulates the ability of the Ecuador indigenous population to help themselves.

This project was started by by Jorge Quilumbaqui, the developer of Primavera One and Two and a great builder in the Cotacachi area..

Primavera Two a

Jorge started off as a laborer for a local indigenous builder and made good after years of struggle. Now he is considered to be one of the indigenous elders in Cotacachi, an example to younger generations of how to prosper in what, years ago, was a difficult environment.


Here’s Jorge, second from left standing with some of the medal winners from a previous Olympics.

Jorge hasn’t forgotten his roots though and employs dozens and dozens of builders in his various projects as well as locals in his hotel in Cotacachi, Sumak Huasi.

When he decided to start this wonderful project Jorge came to Inn Land of the Sun to tell me about his plan to stage an athletics competition for indigenous children. He would call it the Indigenous Olympics and it would primarily be a way to financially help all the different indigenous communities around Cotacachi. Using his own money and also sponsorship of the prizes for the winning children athletes would be a computer or school utensils for the entire school year.


Some of the children, in good humor and ready to compete!

Knowing us at Inn Land of the Sun very well and aware that we have the Land of the Sun Foundation to primarily help the indigenous in Ecuador, Jorge had no hesitation to ask us to be one of the sponsors of his event. We had no hesitation agreeing to do so!

I find Jorge to be a humble man without any airs, unassuming with conservative style and tastes and with a social conscience – he wants to give back to his own indigenous community.

It was no easy task to arrange the Olympics because sometimes there’s a rivalry between the different indigenous communities and also the children are, for the most part, not used to taking part in athletic events such as relay and long jump. They can all run but don’t know how to start a sprint or pace themselves in the longer distance events.


Here’s some supporters from the Morales Chupa community

Jorge hires a physical education trainer to visit all the 14 communities that want to participate; the trainer spends time in each community and then moves on to the next community.


The event takes place in Cotacachi’s very own sports stadium which is basically a soccer pitch surrounded by a 400 meter track. The stadium started to fill early and the children were all kitted out in their sports kits with the name of the community stitched on to each shirt.


Mostly indigenous spectators look on but middle left you can spot two of our delegates looking on


It was an event for all the family.

During the first Olympics we were all involved in a Super Spanish course in Cotacachi so this made a perfect event for delegates to visit and try out new phrases they had just learned in class.


Here’s a delegate making some new friends

Then the action started and it was time for us spectators to sit back and snap photos, watch others hard at play and marvel at the participation of everyone involved. It was taken seriously with gold-plated, silver and bronze medals and even official time-keeping so that in future years new records can be made and broken.

I don’t know why, but watching the Olympics on tv, especially the drama on the athletics track sometimes makes my eyes water as I empathize with the emotions athletes feel, dreams realized and dreams shattered. Years of effort paying off or disappearing down the proverbial drain.


Both boys and girls competed and the joy expressed as they competed, won and lost in good spirits was a pure pleasure to watch.


The pride with which medals are received and worn is all the evidence you’ll  need to know that Jorge’s efforts to give back to his own indigenous community are very successful.


Children walk away with a medal around their necks and smiles on their faces.

The greatest asset of all is the ability to labor at what you love wherever you live. This brings everlasting wealth and Jorge and these Olympics are a perfect example of this.

For assistance in visiting Cotacachi and free rooms at Land of the Sun we invite you to Become an Ecuador Living club member.


2013-2014 Super Thinking + Spanish – Writing to Sell – Business & Investing Course Schedule

Schedule 2013-2014  Super Thinking + Spanish  – Writing to Sell – Investing & Business Courses.

Here are photos I took of Mt. Dora…

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mt-dora-images tags:

its annual arts festival. 


June 21-22-23  Super Thinking + Spanish  St. Charles, MO  Single $699  /  Couple $899 (Teacher Mark Frakes)

July 5-6-7  Super Thinking + Spanish  Sarasota, Florida  Single $699  /  Couple $899  (Teacher Mark Frakes)

July 12-13-14 Super Thinking + Spanish Kelowna, BC, Canada  Single $699  /  Couple $899 (Teachers Shawn & Suzanne Bandick)

August 16-17-18  Super Thinking + Spanish  St. Charles, MO  Single $699  /  Couple $899 (Teacher Mark Frakes)

August 31-September 1-2  Super Thinking Writer’s Camp  West Jefferson, NC  (Gary & Merri Scott)

September 27-28-29  Super Thinking + Spanish  St. Charles, MO  Single $699  /  Couple $899 (Teacher Mark Frakes)

October 4-5-6  Super Thinking International Investing & Business Seminar  West Jefferson, NC  

Enroll here $799.   Couple $999 (Gary & Merri Scott)

November 15-16-17   Super Thinking + Writer’s Camp  Mt. Dora, Florida  (Gary & Merri Scott) 

November 21-22-23  Super Thinking +Spanish  Puerto Aventuras, Mexico Single $699/Couple $899 (Teachers Suzanne & Shawn Bandick)


January 10-11-12   Super Thinking + Spanish  Mt. Dora, Florida  (Gary & Merri Scott)

February 14-15-16  Super Thinking International Investing & Business Seminar  Mt. Dora, Florida  

Enroll here $799.   Couple $999  (Gary & Merri Scott)

For information more contact Cheri Hall at cheri@garyascott.com

Attend all seminars and courses and more FREE or at a discount as an International club member.  See details here.