Fun Culture Facts #1

A little something until I can post more photos:

  1. Not really a culture fact, but you yawn a lot more in higher altitude, or at least I have been (Cuenca is 8,000ft above sea level. The highest point in Washington DC is 410ft above sea level).
  2. Ecuadorians eat a small breakfast (usually some sort of bread and fruit) and dinner (rice with meat is common), and a large lunch. They drink juice all the time, from all kinds of different fruits.
  3. There's a rule called "pico y placa" ("peak and plate", meaning license plate) in the major cities of Quito and Guayaquil, where cars with license plates ending in certain numbers aren't allowed to drive on certain days of the week; so if your plate ends in 9012, for example, you can't drive on Tuesdays between 6am and 8pm. It's meant to alleviate traffic congestion by taking cars off the road. This can be a hassle for families who need to get to work, so richer families usually end up buying two different cars to use on different days.
  4. Forget voter apathy in Ecuador! They have compulsory voting. The way I understand it, if you don't vote in an election, you'll have problems buying a house, getting married, getting loans or doing other logistical things that require legal papers. They'll ask for proof of voting in the most recent election when you apply for these things and they can refuse you if you don't have it.