Vanessa Hua's Blogs

  • Field Notes from Ecuador

    We didn't have to sacrifice a virgin to the volcano. Though Cotopaxi sent up her plume over Quito -- a jaw-dropping spectacle that made me ponder unseen geologic forces, Continental Drift, magma, the Ring of Fire -- natural disaster did not intervene this time on my International Reporting Project fellowship. Ecuador's time zone is only two hours ahead of Pacific Standard Time, so while in Quito, in between interviews or at night or early morning, I called home via Google Hangouts, courtesy of the hotel's strong Wi-Fi signal. I caught snatches of the twins' conversation and found myself startled by the complexity of their sentences (albeit spoken in their familiar high pitched voices). Had they grown up, that much, within a couple days? We departed for Lago Agrio a gritty oil boomtown in the northern Ecuador. We stayed at...

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