La Bella Crucita – Thursday 01/03/2019

“Hey it’s not raining Jackson!”

“Ready for the great grocery exchange?”

“Certainly.  Especially after being inside most of the day yesterday.”

“Wonder what we’ll see today.”

“Are you ever going to share with me your new year’s resolutions?”

“Okay I’ll share one – ‘To be more supportive of you’.”

“What exactly does that mean?”

“Well, you’re rather floppy at times you know, I can support you.  Get it?”

“You already do emotionally and as far as physically, I do tend to step on your ears at times, at least not your tail.”

“What I mean is, I won’t complain.”

“Aw, Jackson, you’re the best and I’ll try not to step on your ears or tail!”

“Nilla, any ideas about today’s blog?”

“I thought we’d wait and see what’s happening in the outside world today first.”

The ride on the trimoto is fun, a bit bumpy don’t you think Nilla?

Wish we could drive!

“Yes, but helps get us to the far end of the malecon quickly to avoid spoilage of the perishables.  They’ve really improved this portion of the malecon since the flooding and it appears as though they are trying to fortify the sea wall.”


“Should we try to help?

This thing is soooo big!

“Too dangerous Jackson.”

“Up the loma for the final delivery.”

Damaged/destroyed home from the 2016 earthquake.

“The view here is beautiful.”

“What’s this, a giant frog!  He thinks we can’t see him.”


“He’s just trying to stay cool in this heat.”

“Look at these lovely bushes, absolutely a splash of color, but look what’s hiding!”

“I almost didn’t see it.”

“Have you noticed the signs, that seem to be promoting a political party ticket Jackson?”

“Is there an upcoming election Nilla?”

“The next presidential election isn’t until 2021, but there may be some referendum questions, constitutional amendments or elections for other political offices in the interim. Lenin Moreno was elected in 2017, he was vice president during Rafael Correa’s presidency.”

“Ecuador elects a president and legislature the president of the republic is elected for a four-year term and the National Assembly composed of 137 members representing the 24 provinces are also elected for a four year term. These assembly members are limited to a total eight year service rather consecutive or not.  What’s even more interesting is that you can vote from an ‘open list’ – across parties.”

“Jackson, it’s going to be interesting in the States now that the Democrats have control of the House while the Republicans retained control of the Senate.”

‘Interesting indeed – I wonder if anything will get done.”

“But back to the system here in Ecuador.  The multiparty system often requires a runoff presidential election as a single candidate rarely is able to amass 40% of the vote and a 10% lead over the second-placed candidate to enable victory.”

Nilla, you do know that Ecuador has a universal compulsory voting requirement for those ages 18 to 65 although those as young as 16 may vote if they so choose.  Failure for anyone within the compulsory group to vote, useless exempt (military, disabled, or residing abroad), will result in penalties.”

“Better voter turnout for sure!  I understand that at the last election turnout was over 90%!”

“And, even more interesting, it is illegal to sell/buy alcohol three days before the election and it is illegal to hold any public meetings on election-day, including church services.”

“Wow, what do people do? Stock up?”

“Suppose so. In February 2018 Ecuador voted to overturn the 2015 constitutional amendment that eliminated presidential term limits and now has decided to reinstate term limits, siting that open limits contributes to political corruption.”

“Furthermore Jackson, a little history, Ecuador was the first country in South American to institute women’s right to vote!  Can non-Ecuadorians vote?”

“If you are not Ecuadorian and have been living in Ecuador for at least five years and have a residence visa and cedula you can vote.  To do so, an ex pat must register to vote in the city in which he/she resides and receive a voter’s identification card.”

“The ATM is right here, might as well get some cash.”


“Then head back to Las Dunas, I’m tired.”

“So am I.”

“Another big day tomorrow.”



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