"If you're brave enough to say goodbye, life will reward you with a new hello." - Paulo Coelho

This is a picture that my friend Julia and I self-timed during a sunset on the beach of Canoa, Ecuador - a place that we called home for a year.

My time in Ecuador had its ups and downs and I don't know if I could have handled it without Julia. We met very early on and became fast friends.

There were times when we had stomach parasites, times when we were robbed, times we couldn't speak the language and other times (later on) when we could speak very well. There were times when we lived easy and times when the money was tight. There were times when we just wanted to give up and go home (Julia back to Germany and me to The States) and there was a time when we were crying at the bus stop because we didn't want to say goodbye.

It's hard living in many different places because you are constantly saying [a temporary] goodbye, but it seems that a new friend always emerges just as you begin to really miss the ones you had to leave behind.

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