Cuenca, Ecuador–Small Inexpensive Pleasures


If you visit Mercado 10 de Agosto, which is a two-story market in Cuenca, Ecuador you can purchase five mangos for three dollars.  Then, if you go back the next week and spend a little more time, visit more than one stand, ask how much it costs for five mangos and look very thoughtful when the vendor gives you an answer–like you’re really thinking it over–you can probably get five mangos for two dollars, instead of three.

Regardless of how successful you were at bartering, take comfort in the fact that you have secured your prize.  And what a prize for these are not just any mangos friend.  They are the best mangos in the world!!!  At the very least, they are the best mangos that this fruit junkie has ever tasted.


It is my opinion that a large portion of true happiness is made up small pleasures.  Little things like hot showers and kind smiles really do matter.  Therefore, it is important to not eat the mango too quickly.  The longer you can enjoy it, the happier you’ll be.  Instead, set it on a clean white plate and consider it for a moment.  Appreciate the rich mixture of color.  Anticipate the tender sweetness of the fruit, the juice sticky on your skin.  Lean down and take a whiff.  What a smell!  This fruit is as fragrant as a flower.

Believe it or not, there is a correct way to cut a mango.  These mangos are soft enough that you can cut through them with a butter knife, if need be.  Stand the mango on your cutting board and slice that fruit along either side of the seed.  This will give you two cheeks of fleshy fruit which you can then slice cross-wise if you wish, being careful not to break the skin.  You can then turn the skin inside out to remove the fruit.  I peel back the skin and scrape it with my teeth for good measure.  The part around the seed is more difficult for me because I usually naw around it like a bone.  This step usually requires dental floss immediately following your feast.


So to summarize, eat your fruit, floss your teeth, and sit back in satisfaction knowing that you have discovered another small pleasure and are well on your way to achieving happiness on this new adventure.  You even learned something in the process.  Not bad for something as simple as a mango.




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47 Responses to Cuenca, Ecuador–Small Inexpensive Pleasures

  1. Wendy..xx

    Too funny! Now I have to go out n find me a mango!

  2. Adventure Amanda

    Soooo good!

  3. Uncle

    I'll never look at a mango the same. Your brother used to love mangos. He refused peaches, begging for mangos when your family returned from living "island style".

  4. John miller

    Really enjoying the equator blog. Keep it up Amanda!

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