Hi fellow interns,

My name is Sarah Metherall. I'm from Halifax, which is a city on the east coast of Canada. I'm going to be doing the internship with you guys. I can't wait to go to Ecuador!! Has anyone googled Sea Turtles on the Galapagos islands? If you haven't, go do it! Anyway, I'm a journalism student going into my fourth year-- the same as Gillian. We're friends and go to the same university.

I look forward to meeting everyone!

Sarah

There is this feeling you get sometimes. A rare, beautiful and somewhat frightening feeling that everything in your life is about to change.

There are no words to quite express what I am feeling right now. I was accepted for an internship with Moving Ecuador only a few days ago, and already my life feels as if its been turned upside down. Not bad upside down, more like that exhilarating, mind racing and somewhat scary upside down feeling you get when riding your first real roller coaster.

It is over two months til I leave. Part of me wishes I could get on a plane tomorrow, the other is happy that I can live out the summer with my friends.

I live in Halifax, Nova Scotia. It's a small-ish town on the east coast of Canada which often gets mistaken for a fishing village. I have lived here my entire life.

I take journalism at the university of kings college, this really small, really cute university where everyone literally knows everyone else. I work two jobs; a synchronized swimming coach and in event promotion for a company called maverick. I like to be busy. When im not working, I love going to the gym. Running is my favorite although i have tried every fitness class from african dance, bosu, poledancing, bootcamp, and everything in between. I also love going out to dance. My new favorite place is a cuban club called "Club Caliente". There is hot latin music playing all the time, people dressed in flirty, gorgeous dresses and free salsa lessons every Monday and Thursday.

Today was a bit boring. Got a haircut (finally!!), booked vaccinations for yellow fever and typhoid (fun:P), had an audition for a tourism print ad and started my second article for Moving Ecuador. This one will be on Pelota National, or National ball.

12 weeks till im in sunny ecuador. Sadly, despite all the beautiful places there are to experience there, the first place i want to see is the beach :)

It still hasn't quite hit me yet....

Went dancing with Colleen at Club Caliente last night. We went early to take in the dance lesson. Last night was merengue. Colleen and I learned some latin dances while in Cuba in April, but missed out on the merengue lessons. you could tell. By the end of the hour we had the basic turns down but not much else. haha oh well. it was alot of fun if nothing else. stayed til the dance floor cleared and then headed home. 

Planning a trip to Ecuador can be fun and exciting. Researching what hotel you will stay at, what monuments to visit, which tours to take and even what to pack to wear to the beach is a huge part of the thrill of planning a trip to this beautiful country.

While all of the above are necessary parts of planning your stay here, there are a few essentials that often get left off the travellers “to do" list. While researching visas, medical coverage, travel warnings and recommended vaccinations may be less fun than planning what spas to visit, failure to look into these essentials may cause unexpected interruptions in your trip. Below, we’ve assembled our own “to do” list to help you prepare for your journey.

Guapulo

When the Spanish explorer Francisco de Orellana the first ever European to venture into the Amazon, embarked on his intrepid journey into the unknown he left the mountainous terrains of the Sierra in pursuit of the Amazon valley. Surprisingly enough in the heart of the Sierra he found the first sightings of the valley that marked the starting point of his travels. This very spot is commemorated by a statue in memory to the great explorer in the heart of Guapulo a northern suburb of Quito that has unparalled views across the open valley that will forever be known as the gateway to the unchartered territories of the Amazon.

Ecuador have a new athlete prodigy in the form of Franklin Nazareno Macías, a 20 year old sprinter that can run the 100m in 10.22 seconds and the 200m in 20.47 seconds. He is already ´the fastest man in the country' according to media reports and is certain to feature in the next Olympic games in 2008.

Macías was oddly scouted by his own mother when he was on the school team, despite making him finish his studies before turning to athletics full time. 

Minister of Defence, Lorena Escudero, has proposed major constitutional changes to the National Advice Commission on the issue of human rights.

According to Escudero, the Ministry of defence has a duty to look for changes to consolidate the democratic system, including the invigoration of human rights and the respect and promotion of social laws and liberties.

Woman Studying SpanishTo many of you reading this and learning Spanish, you will have had the classic squinting eyes look.

I'm fairly confident in my ability now. I've been speaking for over a year and have done numerous interviews in this language, so when someone looks at me as if I had just told them I was planning to fly to the moon next week I get really cross.

The Colombian chancellor Fernando Araújo has proposed to his Ecuadorian counterpart María Fernanda Espinosa that the two countries "brace in a brotherhood" over the issue of coca cultivations on the boarder.

"My proposal is that we meet to revise the subject and talk as if we were brothers", she said.

With parades, cries, processions and the process of urban regeneration, the city main port is ready to take centre stage for the city's biggest festival.

The classic topic "Guayaquil, warrior's" wood, he/she has transformed into the non alone hymn of the parties, but rather besides the union and the temper, characteristic of the citizens of this city.

Rafael Correa, elected back in November by the Ecuadorian Republic ran as an Independent vowing to dissolve Congress and elect a new National Assembly which he duly did in April when 80% of the public voted with the President.
Quito will be opening a new bus terminal this July in the Quitumbe area. The new station will replace the old terminal,  which has been running for the past 60 years.  The structure and design are state of the art, featuring a deck hung with the support of the steal cables in place of the concrete deck found at the old terminal. 
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