I kept wondering if I was going to run into trouble trying to cross the border on New Years Eve. I did, but it was not at the customs office as I had originally thought. I ran into it (almost literally) on the road. I thought is was just an excuse for guys to dress up in drag and festively dance in the middle of the street, but there was more purpose than that. They held up ropes in the middle of the street to stop traffic and ask for money for explosives to ignite the new year. They stuffed paper mache dolls (called ano Viejo – the old year) and set them to fire at midnight. I loved this idea of burning the old.
I made it into Ecuador and headed straight for Cayambe, the equator, arriving just as the sun was setting. I was meeting 7 other motocyclists for the night at Hacienda Gualchapa, an old monastery turned hotel.
The actual turning of time to 12am, 1.1.13 was celebrated with handshakes and well wishes, not shouts or fireworks, tired from the days ride, I think we were all mesmerized by the big bonfire.
So, it is also the time of year people post their New Years resolutions. I am of the belief if I put it out there, maybe I will stick to it more. So here are mine. As with the rest of my life, I tried to keep it simple this year.
- Smile more. Most people think I am more serious than I am, so I vowed to smile more, even if it is only in my helmet. It immediately reminds me to appreciate what is happening at that moment, with whom and puts me in a better mood.
- Live with Balance. (an apt resolution for spending NYE at the equator) I am entering the new year with the idea of making better choices for myself. I am not going to outright say “no” (or “yes” for that matter) to anything. I am vowing to take personal responsibility to live healthier, moderately, and evaluate what’s important to me.
- Stop being “lost”. It’s hard to quantify that one…but those who know me will understand.
- Write/Publish a book. I figured I should add a tangible goal too.
Bien Viaje and Happy 2013!