Travel Theme: Let it Shine…Let it Shine


“Oh, please let the sun shine! Just for one hour! ” I repeatedly chanted the entire month in Ecuador. This week’s travel theme is shine. Substituting other memorable shining moments, I present…..Shine!

“It’s hard to be a bright light in a dim world.” ― Gary Starta

A cathedral in Quito, Ecuador.
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“I stood alone beneath the stars and shouted to the heavens at the top of my lungs and what was so beautiful was the way the stars shined when the sky swallowed your name.”― Testy McTesterson
Shine on. Read more.

Travel Theme: Unexpected


The Weekly Travel Theme from Where’s My Backpack? is Unexpected. Let’s face it! Seasoned travelers have learned… sometimes the hard way… to expect the unexpected.  Our month-long trip through Ecuador was no exception.

We had just arrived in Quito,Ecuador via Costa Rica, when I received an email from a friend: You need to check the law for returning to Costa Rica from Ecuador. They won’t let you board the plane without proof of a yellow fever vaccination and it has to be dated at least ten days before you board the plane.

Oh, no! We weren’t expecting to be in a high risk area, but what if this was true? I really didn’t want to get the yellow fever vaccination because I was afraid of getting sick, having a bad reaction, or ruining our trip. Our last day in Quito, we decided to go to the hospital and suck-it-up! After waiting in the vaccination line, the nurse asked, “How old are you?” This was one case…probably the only one… where we were rewarded for our age. “You are too old for the shots, and the risk is too great,” the lovely nurse said. Instead, she filled out the information and handed us the certificates all for free!!!

our vaccination certificate copy

Don’t stop, yet! More unexpected surprises are on the next page.