When you travel somewhere, such as Ecuador, you're bound to notice things that are different. I venture to say everyone who comes to Ecuador has or will see examples of situations you couldn't begin to get away with 'back home'.
The following photos made me say 'OMG...did OSHA approve this?' knowing there's no such thing here and giggling because there's no way in Hell they could exist back home in the US of A. They would be torn down, or shut down, people jailed, fines issued, lawsuits filed....you get the idea.
Enjoy the 46 photos and maybe several laughs!!!
1. I had to drive across this riverbed to access the hotel in Mindo.
2. That wonderful suspension bridge for the pedestrians to use.
What could go wrong?
|The deck of a bridge I was about to drive over.|
Yes, that's my foot. Don't ever say I never include pictures of myself!
|Workers making repairs to my roof because I had leaks. The one guy is standing on the ridge, 3 floors up.|
|Ok, OK, so this bridge isn't being used anymore. It's closed off. But, it's pretty cool.|
|CLEARLY, no OSHA here!! This guy had to paint a hard to reach area.|
Solution: Lay a plank across the balcony railings, then strap one end of the plank TO the railing. Walk out on the other end. Kinda like a diving board.
|A zip line in Banos.|
Hey, why shouldn't dogs be allowed to do it, too?
|I was walking on this new sidewalk and not really looking down. BUT, I did just in time to prevent not stepping into this hole and breaking my leg.|
|Every day is laundry day in the rivers around here.|
|Oh, and if you still need more height, use an old rotted wooden door and lay it across the steps and a sawhorse to create a raised and (semi) level platform.|
|A normal bridge encountered all over Ecuador. I don't need to point anything out.|
|Yet another one.|
|Fireworks in a crowded park.|
On the ground, not aerial.
Before they ignite the show, they toss a handful of firecrackers on the ground to make the crowd move back...ohhhh, I dunno, maybe 20 - 30 feet.
The sparks rained down on the crowd.
|Cuenca has been gradually rebuilding sidewalks. In the process, they install new underground conduits. But, they don't always cover the holes while the project is still underway.|
|First off, you probably noticed the big mud patch to repair the wall of this church. But, did you notice the ladder?|
|What can I say? I LOVE these bridges!!|
|City park in Guayaquil where iguanas roam free. What could go wrong with a little girl pulling an iguanas tail?|
|Pedestrian bridge (still being used) suspended over the Santa Barbara river near Paute.|
I dunno, I see a lot of rust. And, the planks...well...look at the next photo.
|Near La Troncal is a sulfur hot springs where two rivers merge. In order to be able to walk up the other branch of the river, you must cross one river. Just hang onto the rope!|
|Beautiful boat, eh? |
Check out the scaffolding the worker is using to work from! It's very common here to use bamboo to construct a scaffold.
|Yet another one down river.|
|Need a couple of strands of re-bar, ohhh about 30 feet long? Hop on the motorcycle with your buddy and go get it!!|
Jis gitter done!!
|Dry your cacao beans on the shoulder of the highway. Nice and toasty there!|
|Remember that truck frame whizzing down the highway some photos back? |
Well, here's one with an unfinished bus frame on it. But....see next photo.
|...no windshield and, clearly, no seatbelts! No problemo!|
|A rickety pedestrian bridge at the entrance to a NATIONAL PARK!!|
|Little nino riding atop a Chevy truck cab in the Christmas parade.|
I remember, when I was a kid, going off for the afternoon into the gully bordering our home, climbing trees, hanging out over the highway on long limbs, dinking around in the creek (slippery rocks, wet wood) and everything was AOK. No cell, walkie talkie, nada for Mom to keep tabs on me. If that were to happen today, I'd be hauled off to Child Protective Services and the Police would be carting my Mama off to jail!!
Another memory...a wild one...from the mid 1960's. We lived on the other side of an old wooden bridge. Our water line was ensconced in a wooden box filled with sawdust (to help keep the line from freezing), and ran along the edge of the bridge decking. It got so old, the line froze on a regular basis and needed to be replaced.
Dad, being a do-it-yourself, innovative, resourceful guy, rebuilt the line himself (with a little help from me, siblings, and I don't remember who else). It entailed removing all the wood railings from one side of the bridge (yep, you read right), leaning over the edge of the bridge (the highway 50 ft below) and hoisting the old line up. Then, installing a new line encased in foam insulation. Visualize...it's wintertime, snow/ice on the road, no railings on one side of the narrow two-lane bridge, and a 50 gallon barrel with a fire burning in the middle of the road to warn oncoming traffic (and warm ourselves as needed). We re-installed the railings and the job was finished and successful.
No permits. No machinery. No County involvement. No one complained or batted an eye. We were careful. No one got hurt.
Now, everything is about holding everyone ELSE accountable but yourself. It's everyone else's fault.
Here, in Ecuador, you make your own decision and take your own risks. That's why we can still do things such as climbing a 500 year old cathedral tower, drive across a riverbed, improvise and engineer unique solutions, and pull on an iguana's tail.