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Hooray! We have a Tribal Area! Welcome!

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hello to Everyone!

After seeing much need for a South American Tribal Area to be added on MDC, I asked for one and we got it! Here it is! Hooray! :

I thought this first official post might be a great chance to introduce ourselves and show our thanks for this great resource!
post #2 of 7
Hi, I am Paola and I am from Ecuador. I now live in Fayetteville North Carolina. Nice to meet everyone.
post #3 of 7
Hi!

My family and I are planning to travel to Ecuador for 2 weeks next month. We live in the US. It's a last-minute trip, so I'm only just beginning to get myself prepared. I'm now thinking through what, if any, vaccines we might get. None are required, but I'm thinking at least HepA. We don't plan to veer to far from the beaten path.

Any thoughts appreciated, as well as any destination ideas. So far Quito and Otavalo are the only definite stops on our itinerary.

Great to have a native amongst us!
post #4 of 7
Jaja, casi no lo puedo creer....hace años que hemos estado pidiendo este foro.

Soy Michelle, tengo un hijito peruano-americano (su papi es peruano), viví en Peru por 2 años y ahora estoy haciendo mi maestria en EEUU.

I lived on the northern coast of Peru for 2 years, and I have a son who is Peruvian-American. Right now we are back in the states because I'm starting a Master's program. Last time we were in Peru, we had such a bad time that I am not planning to go back to live there for a while, but I know we will go back someday. My dream is to start an NGO organizing poor communities.

I've heard that the indigenous communities around Quito (particularly La Chimba) offer some really fascinating off-the-beaten-track tourism opportunities. La Chimba is really close to Quito, like a 2.5 hour bus ride. Check out the South American Explorers Club, they might be able to give you some good advice. I've also heard that Cuenca is really beautiful. I have been to Loja and Vilcabamba, which are in the southern mountains of Ecuador. Might be too far away for you, as they would involve a long bus ride or a short flight. Vilcabamba is gorgeous, but a little touristy. It has become a mecca for new-age-y expats with money.

Also, I wouldn't worry about more vaccines than Hep A, maybe typhoid if you could get a hold of it. Those are the two food or water related diseases that seem the nastiest.

If there are any long-term expats reading this, how did you deal with food poisoning? I have always gotten sick at least once or twice a month, even after living there for months and months and eating SO carefully. It got really old really fast last time I was in Peru. Does it ever go away? (Honestly, this is one of the major reasons I don't want to move back to Peru....it was that bad...and I lovelovelove living in Peru)

Edited to respond to next post: (my computer is acting up and I can't reply, just edit)
I'm not sure whether it was food poisoning or getting sick from the water. How do you tell the difference? I have been to Peru three times, and the second time I tried the approach of mild exposure to the water (brushing teeth, mainly) and got very sick very often. The first time, I was childless and ate everything including rural food where I was volunteering, again sick quite often. The third time, I was super careful about not eating at any restaurants, never drinking or washing or brushing teeth with unboiled water. I still got sick quite a bit, sometimes from the fact that my MIL leaves the food out on the countertop for hours on end and sometimes just randomly. I lost so much weight, I was down to 92 lbs, it was scary, honestly. I really want to go back someday but I'll most likely be doing it alone with my kid, and the idea of being bedridden every few weeks as a single parent is just not feasible. Not to mention, extremely unpleasant.
post #5 of 7
Do you mean real food poisoning, or getting sick from drinking the water? Because that's more likely parasites or amoebas and should be treated differently. In my first year in honduras (which yes, i know is not south am, but the only forum we have is caribbean and it's all talk on costa rica), i got sick A LOT. lost lots of weight. started with the theory of get over it and drink the water, and ended up having to be on on the filter and super careful b/c i was so sick and then pregnant. Getting a UV filter could be useful for your house, and is worth the money (not sure of cost). Just make sure you use the filter every time that faucet is turned on. Our second year there, after returning from ds2's birth, i did mostly fine. rarely sick, didn't lose weight, just eased myself in slowly and was okay. Now, after 18m in the states we're back in honduras, not rural this time. in the big city where no one drinks the water if they don't have to. We're only 4 weeks in, so still bleaching raw veggies and fruits, but mostly just cooking them to be safe. We're brushing teeth with sink water though and washing in it, and no one's been sick yet.

i'd say just go slowly, though it sounds like you did and still had issues. A UV filter in your house would help, get all water from there. Don't eat the street chicken.

And know that it won't always be the same - i was fine our second year and this year so far, and am not living in fear. who knows, your body may change. did you live rurally? poor water source? give your body time to heal and you may find that next time is better.
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the great tip on the UV filter!
post #7 of 7

expat mama in Lima, Peru

[QUOTE=la mamita;12012953]If there are any long-term expats reading this, how did you deal with food poisoning? I have always gotten sick at least once or twice a month, even after living there for months and months and eating SO carefully. It got really old really fast last time I was in Peru.QUOTE]

great to know there is a tribal area for South America now!...soy estadounidense, viviendo en Lima, Peru con mi esposo Peruano y nuestro hijo Peruano-Americano (nacido en Lima)

I have had the same problem with food poisoning ever since moving here (although not quite as frequently as you seemed to have)...it's awful enough on your own...but being pregnant...and then with a newborn...while breastfeeding...it has been near impossible to deal with at times - also, my husband has Parkinson's, so when I have been sick (especially after having the baby), he can't just "take over" - it is extremely difficult and causes a lot of extra stress...

we have thought of moving back to the States, too, for this reason (I also had a skin allergy that was attributed to certain "bichos" in the water) - I just couldn't go one being sick all the time - we all need me to be well...

it's been over 3 years now...I am extra extra careful with all food and drink (and water - brush teeth and wash all fruits and vegetables with bottled water - no baths for prolonged skin exposure, which is really a shame)...it is better, I have to say

I find that every time I go back and forth on trips, my tummy needs to adjust, but it's not so horrible anymore (hopefully, I'm not jinxing myself by saying this)

we rent now, but we are planning on buying a home soon and when we do, we will definitely install a water filter...
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