The Difference I have found in Ecuador

Freak people out in public restrooms by saying come in when they knock on the stall door.

Notice the sign, plunger, basket, and deodorizer in our bathroom.

Notice the sign, plunger, basket, and deodorizer in our bathroom.

Of course we did not expect everything to be the same in Ecuador. You may get a kick out of hearing about the differences. Probably the most difficult to adjust to is the fact that most places including our apt. you can not put toilet paper in the toilet. Beside the toilet is a wastepaper basket with a lid, lined with a plastic grocery bag. In most public restrooms they have that. In the few restrooms I have gone into, they had toilet paper. Today, I had to use the one at the Tia Market downtown. Luckily, Leo had toilet paper in his backpack (we had been warned) because I needed it. This restroom you had to get a key from the security guard, who stands just inside the store. The toilet seat was disgusting, but the room itself  was ok. Wendy says that a lot of toilet seats are missing in public restrooms, because Ecuadorians steal them.


At first I hated doing dishes because I thought I could not use the tap water. So I would have to heat water and boil it for 3 minutes constantly that I would put in a very very large pot. When I washed the dishes, I’d boil some more to have hot and then I’d add the cooled water I had boiled previously. Then after washing them, I would use the cooled boiled water to rinse the dishes. Too much work!! Wendy said to just heat the water to get hot water, then add tap to cool it a little, and rinse from the tap. Much easier. Friends, enjoy that hot tap water you have. Lord knows if I will ever see it again.


Oh, I have a faint memory of dryers. Here it is, hang it on the line, but the bad part is it never feels dry to me. I guess because of all the dampness in the air.

They never feel dry-humidity

They never feel dry-humidity

Here is one you will never believe, milk and eggs on a shelf not refrigerated. The milk comes in a box or a plastic pouch. It’s on the supermarket shelf. We buy about 3 of them at a time. We store it on the shelf, except for the one we are using.It goes in the frige. The eggs stay on the shelf. (When in Rome…).

Eggs not refrigerated? I'm still alive.

Eggs not refrigerated? I’m still alive.

Milk in a box, not refrigerated. Actually tastes good.

Milk in a box, not refrigerated. Actually tastes good.

I have seen on the internet while looking for rentals and houses for sale, that it is common to have upper kitchen cabinets, but not  lowers. Actually, downstairs they have no uppers either. My stove burners have two settings max (very high) and min. (high). The soup is boiling away on min. I have had to add water numerous times. You cannot simmer, so it is hard to keep from burning things.


People ride horses on the beach and the cars drive on the beach. (Kind of like Daytona Beach, FL).


At the beach, many people just swim in their clothes.


In this town there are no cut flowers. Ecuador is famous for its roses and in some towns they have flower markets, but not here.


On the beach there are sellers going up and down selling this and that-sunglasses, shaved flavored ice etc.

Selling carts on the beach. Is he on a cell phone?

Selling carts on the beach.

I bought red beans at the supermarket and I put them in a pot to soak. I looked at them about 2 hours later and noticed little black bugs doing the back stoke in the water.Oooooo! I boiled them a bit to kill the bugs before I threw it away. I had them in plastic bin with rice and a few other things. The rice had bugs, too, so I had to pitch it, too. We bought some more sealed plastic containers to keep the beans and rice in. I went back to  the market and bought more beans but I checked them out better. I am cooking the new ones right now.They smell so good!

Watch the video called, Help, There’s Bugs in my Beans!

  1. Very interesting—I guess it’s an appreciation course. You’ll be use to it very soon. I remember having shaved ice with condensed milk poured over it on one of the islands I visited—it was wonderful!! Do they have it there?

    • I don’t know the flavors they have, but I would guess they do have the condensed milk, because condensed milk is a favorite all over Latin America. Leo loves condensed milk. In CT he ate it out of the can with a spoon.

  2. Holy Moly !! its a good thing you are the adventurous kind and can go with the flow. Is there any such thing as a laundermat there ? Watch out for those bugs !!!!!

    • There is a place to take laundry, but we have so much each week it would probably cost us a fortune. I’m watching for the bugs, but the other day Wendy showed us her back yard space and there was a spider hanging over my head that I did not see. She said, oh there’s a spider. I want to take a picture of it. Then I saw it hanging there. Now I try to watch better-everywhere.

  3. When I was in Aruba, I was looking for milk for my morning coffee. I was looking for a refrigerated shelf… but just like you, I found the milk out in the open on an unrefrigerated shelf. At first I was afraid to use it, but then, as you said, when in Rome…
    I didn’t get sick, it tasted fine.

    • I guess it has to do with refrigeration possibilities. I’m not really sure if once you open it, you can still keep it out of the fridge. Did you refrigerate after opening? They have those creamers out now in the US that you don’t have to refrigerate,but I’m not sure what it is made of. I’m thinking of that commercial that says do you want cream or oil on your pie.

      • They have the Parmalait milk here which is similar – on a shelf in a carton. I’ve bought them a few times in the winter just to have on hand in case there’s a big snowstorm and we wouldn’t be able to get to the store. Unopened, it keeps a lot longer than the milk we buy in the refrigerated section.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *