Big news! We have a new travel companion! Remember our friend Sol?
Our Spanish teacher, Sol, at Yanapuma Spanish School. She’s a great teacher, but Nona and Papa think she has a future in television.
Well, no, Sol is not our new travel companion, although I’m sure she would be great company on any trip. The problem is that Sol has a husband, Dennis, and no way he’s waving goodbye to her. Of course, he really isn’t a problem. He’s a nice guy, from Chicago, but I’m getting away from my news.
Back to my news. In our Spanish classes, Sol could tell that I was sort of feeling lonely. She’s good a sensing things like that. So, one day, she said to us, “I have a surprise for you, and I think you’re going to like him.” I thought, “Him? I don’t see a ‘him’ anywhere.” Then I could see that she pulled something small and blue our of her purse.
When what to my wandering eyes did appear but a smaller than me blue, plastic Jurassic!
“If Nona and Papa approve, I’ve given my little friend Dino Romeo permission to accompany you on the rest of your trip through South America,” she explained and added, “Dino speaks fluent Spanish and pretty good English — although in a high squeaky voice — and, although you’ve studied Spanish hard and progressed well, I think you could use his interpretative skills in Peru and Argentina.”
Wow, that sold me, but Nona and Papa did not say yes right away. Instead, Papa asked Dino, “Dino, how would you feel about being our traveling companion and translator? You know that you would have to leave Cuenca, you might miss being with Sol and Dennis, and you’d have to share a space in Nona’s purse with Solbit.” After a long pause, Dino replied, “This is my chance to travel, to see the world, and I’m looking forward to an adventure with you.” Geez, he has really good English for a Spanish speaking plastic Jurassic.
No sooner had we gotten home than we got another huge surprise, but in a very tiny package. Unknown to us, someone else was feeling a bit lonely for company. Someone from Washington, DC. Remember our friend Jo, the friend we stay with in DC? Well, she wasn’t feeling lonely, and she didn’t come to see us here, but a friend of hers, a little red bird, did. She stays at Jo’s place in Washington, too, and we had met her there.
That little bird, a plastic cardinal, flew or was dragged by winds to Ecuador in search of us. She knew we were in Cuenca, but she didn’t know where. She stopped to rest at Pumapungo Park. When she got a drink at the pond, she asked the resident ducks there if they knew where Nona and Papa were staying in Cuenca.
The Mandarin duck couple recognized her description of Nona and Papa, “Oh, yeah, the two old people — gringos — in Panama hats. The woman is always taking pictures of us; they come here almost every day.”
Amazingly, they had actually noticed Nona and Papa! The Mandarin ducks told her, “We heard those two old people telling Jan, the Belgian waffle guy over there, that they have a place in Plaza San Franciso, above the Otavalan market.” They told her to just fly up to the plaza and ask someone at the market where the two old gringos in Panama hats were staying.
“Si, Señorita, viven alli.” (English: Yes, young lady, they live there.), and the nice woman pointed to the apartment above the dentists’ office.
When Papa heard chirping outside the apartment door, he went out to the hall to look. He came back in with a little, red bird in his hand, “Hey, look who I found outside! It’s Katy, our friend Jo’s cardinal!”
Now, I had two travel companions Dino, the blue plastic Jurassic, and Katy, the plastic cardinal. We’re going to have so much fun on this trip.
Red, blue, and orange. We’re all different colors. We’re different shapes. We’re different sizes. We got here in different ways. Yet, we are the same — plastic — and best friends, now. I feel so much better having travel companions like these on this trip.
Papa — who always edits my blog posts — said, “Solbit, I wish you could tell Donald Trump what you just wrote for that photo caption. He needs to hear your message.” I asked, “Papa, so who is Donald Trump, and why would he need advice from a little plastic Jurassic like me?” Papa answered me, “Solbit, Donald Trump is a poor soul who has lost his way and who is sowing meanness back home. He needs a big dose of truth and wisdom, and that can come from the least likely sources, even from a little, plastic Jurassic like you.” Who knew, huh?
Hey, after 2 wonderful months here in Cuenca, we fly tomorrow to Quito. That’s the big capital city of Ecuador. I have to go help Nona pack, and I have to orient Dino and Katy to how we travel. Fortunately, Nona’s purse pocket has plenty of room for all three of us. Dino had never flown before, so Katy and I — being experienced fliers — will hold his “hands,” really his front feet. Bye!
I’m your friend.
*New reader? Get oriented below.
- You may be asking yourself, “Who is Solbit?” Solbit is a fictional character, but she is a real plastic dinosaur, sent to us unsolicited in a package we ordered from Photojojo. So, she’s a plastic jurassic. Solbit is short for the four names given her by our grandchildren: Sparkle, Orangie, Lulu, Breakit. We tend to use her given names for when she’s been naughty. Thank you for visiting Tales of a Plastic Jurassic. Solbit likes company and hopes you’ll come back.
- You can learn more about Solbit at her About page and in the earlier posts, “Solbit: How I Got My Name” and “Solbit: How I Got to Travel.”