the river

Often as I walk along the Rio Tomebamba going into El Centro, I reach for my phone to take a picture. You see, the river is ever-changing, and because there’s been a lot of rain every single day during the month of March, the river looks mighty powerful. 

People flock to the river for different reasons . . . there are young lovers head-to-head enjoying each other’s company; a few people sitting on benches facing the river are deep in conversation; some folks are reclining on the grass with a book in their hands; teenagers are happily practicing walking on a rope tied to two trees; there are people simply watching the river while slowly licking an ice cream cone; sometimes people are washing their clothes and placing them neatly out to dry in the sun; children are playing and laughing in the water; bicyclists are pedaling by; always there are people meandering with their dogs; police are strolling along the sidewalk; and across the narrow road from the river are people sitting on their terraces, grateful to have a river view. I pay attention to the activity, noticing that down by the Rio Tomebamba, no one ever seems to be in a hurry. 

  This is a photo of Rio Tomebamba in a more isolated area during a quieter time in February. Do you see a woman relaxing on the edge of the water?

The Rio Tomebamba is an important part of life in Cuenca. As I walk along the river, I sometimes wonder about the people who lived here centuries ago, and what their relationship to this well-loved river was.

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“Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it, always work with it, not against it.” – Eckhart Tolle

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