Baños de Agua Santa, Ecuador – First Impressions

In Spanish, the word baño means literally bath, though it's often used to mean bathroom as well. So you really have to wonder what the intent was in naming that unfortunate town in California Los Baños. There was clearly no malice, however, in naming the resort town in Ecuador. Even though everyone just calls it … Continue reading Baños de Agua Santa, Ecuador – First Impressions

Life as a Volunteer: Teaching English in Ambato, Ecuador

Dennis and Kimberly in Ambato

Our third volunteer position on our tour was tutoring English at the South American Language Center in Ambato, Ecuador, for 3 weeks. This consisted of spending 25 hours a week (each) having conversations with students, just so they would have a chance to practice English with a native speaker. We could talk about pretty much … Continue reading Life as a Volunteer: Teaching English in Ambato, Ecuador

Getting Scammed (Twice) On Airbnb: How It Happened, How We Recovered, and How To Prevent It

Let's be clear right up front: we've used Airbnb quite a few times, and have always been quite pleased with their service. And with one exception, we've never been unhappy with the hosts we booked with. (See our story about our stay near Naples, Italy.) But we've never encountered an outright fraud before. Until now. … Continue reading Getting Scammed (Twice) On Airbnb: How It Happened, How We Recovered, and How To Prevent It

Getting From Cancun to Lake Atitlán, Guatemala

We had an early morning flight from Cancun to Guatemala City; and from there, we had to get to the village of Santa Cruz la Laguna at Lake Atitlan in Guatemala. This was a long, rather complicated process with several hurdles to overcome. The first problem was just getting to the airport. As we've mentioned … Continue reading Getting From Cancun to Lake Atitlán, Guatemala