Is this real life?


After a week of rain and cold in the Orient of Ecuador, my body is crying out for the dryness of a Peruvian desert. It screams to sweat instead of shiver.

A hot spring would do. I’ve come to LOVE hot springs — even the nasty municipal ones.

Today I’m trusting my gut and taking a ride south to Vilcabamba, Ecuador. It’s heralded as the valley of longevity because its people are known to live very long lives.

Surely no one lives a happy long life in the miserable cold and wet cloud forests. I’m very much hopeful for a warm climate.

And as my day progresses, the rain and clouds ebb. The temperature climbs. And I find myself with a $9 dorm bed in this incredible valley. It’s warm. It’s arid. And the hotel manager says it hasn’t rained three days in three months.


Be sure to check out Hostería Izhcayluma.


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