Archivo del Autor: Andrea

I´m excited for the next year, so let´s keep moving forward!

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Audre Lorde, a writer I love, says that you need to transform your silence into language and actions because if you keep your words inside, they will leave you dry and feeling worst. For the last two weeks, I have been thinking about grief, loss, and death.

I have not written anything since last year, because I was trying to process a lot of different situations that happened in December. I lost my German Shepherd, Princesa, due to her age, and this was extremely painful for my family and me. She was a vital member and during the 12 years we spent together, she was a therapist for my sister, a great company for my mother and father, a strong protector of my sisters, and the most beloved dog.

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I didn´t want to make this article a sort of obituary, but when the idea of releasing something keeps popping into your head, you know you need to put your pain in words.

Princesa, we will remember your constantly moving radar ears, your long pink tongue, your brown eyes, your Cheetos-scented ducks, your white hairs over time, and all the love and protection that overflowed for us for more than a decade. ❤️ Thank you for teaching us how to love.

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Above all, I learned many things in 2022. ❤️‍✨️ The last year split in two, I changed from a job that was draining me, I met wonderful people, I gave a small conference at a university here in Cuenca, I read a lot, and above all, I lived. Thanks to everyone who supported me when I cried (because I did cry a lot) with hugs, words, memes, podcasts, songs, or dancing with me. I allowed myself to be vulnerable and I don’t regret it.

Hello, how have you been?

ANDREA LECARO

In Cuenca, I had some cold days, but the last Saturday we had a sunny day, so I explored the city with my sister, who visited me this weekend.

We walked near the Tomebamba river, passed over the bridge «Vivas nos queremos» and went to the park «la Madre».

I love this city, because of the great number of places you can visit. You will find in Cuenca many parks and a lot of places to rest.  I had a lot of work lately, so as a way of self-care I decided to disconnect from everything on the weekends.

Some activities that I enjoy are reading, writing, going out for a breath of fresh air in the parks, buying myself a dessert, drinking a matcha latte, going out with friends, dancing, or doing anything else. I only try to respect my time and how I spent it because there is always the sense of being productive and having no rest.

Soon we will be in the last month of the year, and I´m really excited about all that I have achieved this year. I have many plans for the next year, but I believe you have to live one day at a time.

I also have been a little nervous, because I will have to make a conference about Literature in one of the most well-known universities here in Cuenca, but I´m feeling very confortable with the research that I make.  Hope everything goes well!

I´m back, yes, after several years…

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I don´t remember the last time that I wrote an article for Panamaholic. Several things passed in my life, I left Guayaquil 3 years ago and began to live alone in Cuenca. Do you remember that I even wrote an article about this marvelous city? I also became a Literature teacher, but after many stressful situations, I declined and instead preferred to be a Copywriter and a journalist for a very important Magazine on design, culture, architecture, and gastronomy.  

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This blog was a sort of relief place for me, I wrote about many topics but there was a moment when the idea of writing it just didn’t make any sense to me and I left everything behind. My only thought was to move forward. So, at that time I focused on education and Literature, and I left behind any sort of relation with hats and fashion. I lost my path and had an existential crisis, everything seemed to be very monotonous and boring for me. Thus, I thought that I needed to change of place and routines, and decided to read more and teach everyone at the school in a better way. For me fashion was a tool of expression, I really enjoyed reading and learning about clothes and the style of people, but unfortunately, later I realized that I didn’t have any satisfaction with that, and became really sad. When I changed the environment, everything took its rightful place, and eventually, I started to think that maybe being a teacher was my purpose.

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Then the pandemic came, and everything changed. Suddenly I realized that it was time to move to another job. Through the years, I realized something: Ecua-Andino is a vital part of me, even though I´m not longer working in the office with my family, I still appeared in the videos, I followed the growth of the brand and became excited when my sisters tell me any big news. After talking with my father, I decided to write again for the blog, as a way of contributing to all the love I have received all over the years.

For this occasion, I chose a hat that really represents me, the Ecuador hat. I asked my older sister to take pictures of me in the forest, near the Yanuncay river, one of my happiest places here in Cuenca. The photo is not professional, but I love the colors and how natural I look. In November, our football team is going to play at the Fifa World Cup and I´m really excited. So, let’s crossed our fingers and pray to be at least in the round of 16.

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Hola, sunshine!

Two weeks ago I lived a very big experience in company of one lovely journalist and also another very special photographer from Next Magazine.  They came to our country because they wanted to follow my journey as a Panama hat blogger and see the entire process of our Ecuadorian hats. Even though I am not exactly a model, the entire week I changed my shy personality and I acquired that posture. I knew that I have to be not only a blogger but also the right ambassador of my own country, so the first day we made a lot of tourism activities such as park visits and streets stops. For them it was very important to choose the right spots for the photoshoot and they finally decided for the colourful houses of Barrio Las Peñas, that forms part of the old town of my city Guayaquil.  

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In the second day the photoshoot was pretty fun but also stressful; I had to change clothes very fast and also had my make up on point. We moved very fast through the city, because of the changing weather (we were still at the rainy season) but at the end of day we visited the two spots that I love in Guayaquil: Mono Goloso and Camellias Tea. 

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We travelled to the Coast on the third day and then immersed ourselves in the jungle of toquilla palms, the weather was very wet and hot, but every moment was worth it! The view of this very green and natural place where the pollution wasn’t invited, gave us a moment of self-concern of the natural fiber we were wearing in the top of our heads and its entire handmade process.

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Many thanks Sophie and Shiloh for your kindly article and also beautiful photos! I hope to visit you one day in your own country and to be also your guest; you invited me so now I only need the time and the chance to travel.  As my father said to you: we are no longer acquaintances, but friends…

As we said goodbye to them at the airport, I felt a little bit melancholic about their departure, but the invitation was made and immediately a phrase came to my head: “when you have friends all over the world, you have houses in every country! “

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We went also to the stadium of my beloved football team, Emelec! The next article I´m definitely are going to talk about that special experience…

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The Holy Week is coming…

There is a week well-known and celebrated here in Ecuador that forms part of the cultural and religious heritage of the country, the Holy Week.  There are a lot of special activities that will let you know more about our traditions and religious beliefs. In Ecuador, most of the population is catholic and the other half confessed that is protestant or don´t have any religious affiliation. The catholic population organize every year a huge procession between 7 churches, where they remember the holy sacrifice of Jesus Christ, make penitence and ask for forgiveness. The tour of «The 7 churches» is a tradition here in my city Guayaquil! In the photos below you can see three of the most emblematic churches:

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«La Merced» church credits: André Loor @simpolei

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In front of the «San Francisco» church… credits: André Loor @simpolei

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In front of the Guayaquil Metropolitan Cathedral… credits: André Loor @simpolei

 

 

The Ecuadorian families are very concern not only of the religious activities but also about implementing some beliefs even in their food! As a child I remembered the picture of my grandma Zoila and father grinding the corn, while we wait to receive in our hands the final meal named “humita” (one of the traditional Ecuadorian foods during the Easter, they are made of steamed savory corn and inside of them you can find cheese, they are later wrapped in corn husks)

Another memory I have is that I started to eat “fanesca” because of my grandma Margarita (the mother of my mom), even though she is no longer catholic she kept that habit! In my city there are plenty of places for eating this popular meal, but I choose the Palace Hotel located in the very center of Guayaquil, because they have not only one of the best fanesca soups but also my beloved coconut lemonade,  my top drink in the city!

Definitely the most significant dish is the fanesca matted soup.  I found the perfect definition and summary of the recipe at the blog of another Ecuadorian food blogger named Laylita: Fanesca is made with salt cod, many different types of beans and grains – both fresh and dry, squash, spices, and many other ingredients. This soup requires a lot of prep work: the fresh grains needs to shucked and cleaned, the salt cod needs to soak for 24 hours, the grains and vegetables are cooked separately. (Source: https://www.laylita.com/recipes/2012/04/01/easter-in-ecuador/)

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I only wanted to eat, but the photo needed to be taken! The delicious dish you see is the traditional fanesca. credits: André Loor @simpolei

For this occasion I was in a more classic mood! The weather in Guayaquil changed a lot; we are now in the rainy season, so at the beginning I had a bright sun and then the sky turned out to gray and start to rain. So my boyfriend took very quickly some photos, I really hope you enjoy it! He is a very talented photographer but I am a really shy model, you will notice that in the picture…l  decided to match a bicolor dress (the flag of my city has both colors : white and light blue) with sandals of a blue color, a white Dumont hat and a brown leather bag. And then I stand in front of the three most emblematic churches in my city!

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credits: André Loor @simpolei

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It´s time to adopt!

Nowadays there are plenty of celebrities and other famous people with an entire nature and animal awareness. They claim through their social networks the importance of not shopping but adopting a pet!   A significant number of them post almost every week a picture of the beloved member of the family. As an example we can find on the Instagram of the singer Miley Cyrus, the multiple images of her entire adopted pets or also the Australian Shepherd dog that the actress Amanda Segfried rescued:

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There are a lot of animal shelters all around the world, that takes care of abandoned or bad-treated dogs and cats. In Ecuador for example we have the “Rescate Animal”, “Arca”, “PAE” or “Fada” foundations, where many volunteers move heaven and earth to obtain collaborations and donations.

Last year in Ecuador we have an event that moved every one of us in multiple ways! The earthquake of the 16th April, leave not only many losses and damages , but also a lot of pets without protection.  The Rescate animal´s foundation started a campaign to give all this loving pets a new home!

Ecua-Andino released four years ago, an entire collection focused on them; the name was “Pet Art collection” and was dedicated to all this beloved members of the family who takes care of ourselves and give us their company 24/ 7 hours a day!  The company was aware of the importance of adopting, so they started last year an alliance with this foundation, where every person who adopts immediately received one hand painted hat. That stimulated many to not only gain a brand new hat, but also to keep this beautiful memory of connecting visually their pet with an accessory in their heads!

In this month the foundation made a special work day for any people who wanted to adopt . They received one iconic Ecuadorian hat!

The experience was really marvelous and it was pretty relaxing and calming to see a lot of dogs moving freely by the place.

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credits: Simpol ei

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A blue butterfly named «Luz»

The people who are really close to me know that I started to read influenced by my grandpa’s figure. He had a very big library where I could take any book! During my childhood and adolescence I also received a lot of books with a special signature “para la chinita lectora (for the Chinese reader)” When I graduated of the school I knew that all I wanted was to study something related with the words and fictional worlds.

Last year my father showed me the beautiful song “Mariposa Azul” of one youngest Ecuadorian singer and composer based in New York City named Luz Pinos. In her early years, Luz grew up exposed to a lot of South American pop and traditional music. Since the age of 3 she was singing and dancing to every song she ever heard. She followed her passion and graduated as a contemporary dancer in Guayaquil, Ecuador then decided to move to NYC and persue her carreer as a profesional singer. After finishing her degree in Jazz and Contemporary Music Luz found her own original sound and way of turning her personal stories into, compositions influenced by Ecuadorian and South American rhythms. ( taken from: http://luzpinos.com/)

When her grandpa passed away she decided to made this beautiful song about him, the moment I heard the song it I was immediately touched by her softly voice and the meaning behind every word of the lyric. Later we had a meeting with Luz and then started the collaboration between Ecua-Andino and she, the resolution was that for every special people she knows she will gave them a marvelous hat with a painted blue butterfly on it.

She presented her last single “Mozo” in Guayaquil and was a totally success, you can see here pictures of the event and a recompilation of her entire presentation. I attended her intimate concert and the connection between Luz and the audience was pretty magic! I´m sure she is a totally rising star!

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Luz and I posing for the picture

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Green, how I want you green…

Hello everyone,

I know I have been since the last year a little bit lost, but my two last weeks of December were very chaotic. I got an operation so I had to stay in bed for about almost two weeks. That’s the reason why I cannot write the last article of the year and for a moment I really believe all the plages of Egipt were falling over me. But nevermind at the end I am very grateful that the Lord took care of me during all this entire recovery process and that my medical exams were very positive. My resolutions for this year 2017 are just simple as to stop doing one of my beloved activities: PROCRASTINATION. I will commit miself to stay focus on the development of my blog, and to maintain you my dear readers well and more often informed.

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Today I want to introduce you the color that will catch everyone´s attention on this year: the greenery. The well-know spanish poet: Federico García Lorca said once: Green, how I want you green. According to Leatrice Eiseman, the executive director of Pantone: Greenery burst forth in 2017 to provide us with the reassurance we yearn for amid a tumultuous social and political environment. Satisfying our growing desire to rejuvenate and revitalize” and that´s exactly what I feel when I try to choose one of the multiple shades of green that our Ecuadorian hats have. The green color, all time associated with the nature and it´s healing power, was never so related with the manufacture of clothes and accessories as nowadays. The increase concern about the climate changes and the ultimate last 4 years view on the ethic fashion, are the reason why we will see this year the green color all over the world.

Leave me any comment you have,

Andrea

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That time of the year…

Hello!

The red  is definitely one the colors you will probably not find in any of my posts…I´m a natural blue lover, with a particular liking for the black and white color. But we are finally in that time of the year where the sparkle and the twinkling lights begin to appear and a lot of simultaneous things in green and red color flood the shelves. So I get this wonderful hat and think: why not? The anti-holiday mood should not be an impediment for me!

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Yes, the plants behind me are the toquilla palms….

Most of The Grinch people or the Advent haters succumb to the paraphernalia of the Christmas.  In Ecuador, as a nation with a Judeo-Christian view, the holidays are celebrated with a lot of excitement and a huge sense of solidarity for the ones who at Christmas Eve would not have any presents or a “decent dinner”.

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I don´t like to show my entire face and smile, but nevermind…

This year is almost ending and I will take important resolutions that without doubt are going to affect the entire  perspective of my blog, thanks for reading me and stay tuned for the news…

 

Leave me any comment about your Christmas impressions,

Andrea

El Descanso Music Festival 2016

I live in Guayaquil , a commercial port that is the Coast of Ecuador, so you will understand that whenseveral headaches or pain in the heart.  We are in an era where the globalization allows us to know the entire musical proposal that exists around the world! In Ecuador are many young bands that have moved from playing in garages to big music festivals like the Lollapalooza. There are well-known Ecuadorian festivals like the Quito Fest, El Carpazo, Fiesta de la música, El Funka Fest and some other. This time I attended to “El Descanso” Festival that was in a place named: Zona del Descanso, near the Cuenca city.

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Ph: Simpol ei https://www.facebook.com/Simpoleif

Last week I travelled to Cuenca, to know a little more about the city and to go to this festival. Three of my favourite bands played there, and they totally rocked! I knew since the beginning that I will forget any shame and I will dance till it hurts! These were the bands:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wohzGyEjLKk (La Máquina Camaleón, was invited the next year to the Lollapalooza Argentina)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=812hphkSfpM   (Legs)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBTasMs-wIg (Swing Original Monks)

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Ph: Simpol ei https://www.facebook.com/Simpoleif

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Ph: Simpol ei https://www.facebook.com/Simpoleif

This time I was for more than 3 days, because I wanted to see one of my nearest friends from the University. The nights in Cuenca are very cold, but you can make a lot of things. There was a fair near the center of Cuenca, where the people can find any handmade or artisanal stuff. At the fair they sold everything from clothes to food, so I tried there some candies with liqueur, which where definitely a burst of flavor in my mouth I move to the Highlands I have to calm myself a little bit in order to not suffer from headaches.

Sometimes It´s definitly good  to take a time off from all the noise and get lost in a different city!