Day 32: Winding Down
We’re winding down here in Quito, but our finals week abroad is still going strong.
While my classmates are finishing up their videos – I was lucky enough to get mine done yesterday – I spent the day doing research for my solo trip and writing my final reflection, a paper that discusses how my final project went and what inspired it. We also paused for a lunch break and couldn’t resist ordering a Latitud Cero cerveza.
My last video was inspired by Nayyirah Waheed, a talented woman who explores the idea of appropriation through poetry. In particular, she asks whether you would still want to travel to a given country if you could not take a camera with you. The first sequences in my video attempts to convey the students of Latitude Zero’s acclimation to a country with camera in hand. It then takes an abrupt pause to display Waheed’s poem, and the latter half of the video is hopefully perceived with a different idea in mind than the former. The audio is meant to exhibit students and professors discussing their usage of cameras, and perhaps their ignorance to whether the camera is a fair tool to be examining the country with.
I feel my work has improved over the course of our trip. I’ve gained valuable skills in Premiere with the help of my classmates – Ellie taught me how to make a handwritten title slide, Michael taught me how to use warp stabilizer…everyone here is an amazing resource.
In the evening, after handing in my video to David, a group of us headed to Teléferico – the cable car that goes way up to 4100m and gives a stunning view of Quito. Becca, Emily, Chelsea and I watched the sun set over the city and I only panicked a little as the car rose higher and higher off the ground. Shoutout to Jean and David for awarding me the “badge of courage” award…I’ll keep doing things that terrify me with as much of a smile as I can muster.
After, we met up with Dani, Amy, Camille, and Paula for a free concert in the park. It was, for a brief moment, the most at home I have felt in Ecuador. The crowd was full of artsy concert goers and the artist, Ceu, was incredible. I am so glad Paula told us about the show – the venue was gorgeous and I had a great time.
I now have one full day in Quito left. I cannot wait to see how our FLACSO exhibition goes – I’m excited to see our work as well as the turnout. And then I’m off, catching buses to visit cities throughout Southern Ecuador and across the border into Peru. I’ll be living out my dream of traveling alone for the first time and I can’t think of a better country to start in than the one I’ve grown to love over the last five weeks. Thank you for the memories, Ecuador. And to all my Latitude Zero friends, I’ll see you back in the states this September. You’re all crazy and I love you for it. Adios, everyone.