Sunday, May 15, 2005

Ecuadorian alternative healing

One of the fun things about travelling is sometimes you find yourself in the hands of local people who are determined to introduce you to some of the finer aspects of their culture. Often you have no idea of where you are heading, like yesterday on my final day of Spanish Scool, My teacher Fernando decided to take me off to the alternative healing centre for my own special therapy. LUCKILY, the centre was full and we couldn't get an appointment. I say luckily because my teacher was determined that I recieve some guinea pig therapy from the local Shamen. For 7 US Dollars I was to strip naked while a nurse holds a live squealing guinea pig, carefully scanning it over your entire body, a bit like radiotherapy. Once this is completed the Guinea pig is promptly strangled in front of you. It is then dissected and the poor animal is examined to see if there is anything wrong with it's organs. Should the ginea pig have a gall stone then this is declared to be the patients diagnosis as well. The added bonus is that afterwards you can take the guinea pig home and cook it up on the BBQ for a special treat of Ecuadors National dish. The intersting thing about all this is how widely regarded this form of medical treatment is. Everyone from my teacher, to our dentist host mother, to the local doctor declares it the best way to truly find out if there is anything wrong with you. I would say there is definitely something wrong with you if you indulge in this kind of thinking. I just hope that my alternative healing Sister Jessica doesn't get wind of this.

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