Housework in Loja

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Today is Saturday and that means two things.  One, we get to sleep in.  I slept until 6:38.  It's 8 now and the rest of the family is still sleeping (except Esther, she is crazy like her mama).  The second thing is that it's housework day.

We are often gone from 8 in the morning until 10 at night and that doesn't leave a lot of time for housework.  We cram the important stuff into Saturdays.

So, I thought maybe y'all would be interested in knowing how housework is different in Ecuador than in the states.  Because, let me tell you- it IS different.


  • We have to boil our water for washing dishes and mopping the floor.  We do have hot water in the shower and the washing machine, but the rest of the house has ice cold mountain water.  Brrr. 
  • Spraying the mattresses with bug spray.  Hmmm, I am not sure what to say about this except that the kids keep getting bitten by invisible mystery bugs and the only thing that helps is spraying the mattresses.  The toxin from the spray will probably give us all cancer.  Which is far better than hearing Esther complain about being itchy.
  • Sweep the couch.  My least favorite task because every time I do it I realize anew how ridiculous the dust in Loja is.  I am telling you that it is unbelievable.  We have given up on the balcony.  Ten minutes after sweeping, mopping, and washing down the railing, the entire balcony is covered in a fine layer of dust.  Shop owners are often seen wetting down the road in front of their shops in a futile effort to cut down on the dust.
  • Dust.  See above.  It's a task meant for an olympic sport.  It's also useless.  I still make Weston do it several times a week.  Don't tell him I think it's useless.
  • Market shopping and food prep for the week.  Dustan will be buying ten pounds of tomatoes (as well as the rest of our weekly fruits and veggies needs) from an open air market which he will haul home in a few woven baskets.  I will soak everything in chemicals which in the long run will probably give us all cancer in order to get rid of the parasites which in the short term will cause us to live in the bathroom.  Then I will process those tomatoes into the world's most tasty pasta sauce.  There are only two brands of pasta sauce available at Loja's only market geared towards gringos and those sauces are tasteless, worthless, and very very expensive.
I love Saturdays.  Except for the dusting, the housework is such an easily visible progress to the day.  Which is often the direct opposite of mission work whose progress can sometimes only be seen after decades of hard work.  

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