Pic du Jour: Fruit vendor, Tarqui Beach, Manta, Ecuador

Fruit vendor, Tarqui Beach, Manta, Ecuador

Today’s travel Pic du Jour is of a fruit and juice vendor plying his trade on Playa Tarqui, one I described in this brief photo essay on the area as Manta, Ecuador’s working class beach.

Sitting just to the east of the Rio Manta that cuts Manabí Province’s largest city —and fifth biggest in Ecuador— in half, you’ll see more cars parked at the water’s edge than beach chairs and umbrellas, giving it a forlorn air of practicality. It’s a good fit if you don’t mind the litter. Plastic mostly, like in most parts of the world.

But back to the juice seller.

Don’t let his brief mistrusting stare fool you. He was a pleasant, personable man who tried to give me a cigarette –on the house– after I bought a bag of sliced mango. He insisted I take it, even after I explained that I no longer smoked. It was easy enough to give it away.

If you ever visit the beach, bear in mind that the fishermen just up the coast, on the other hand, who watched me photograph their early morning piles of shark fins, didn’t graduate from the same school of hospitality. Their unfriendly glares were very real.

Tarqui Beach is also known for its shipbuilders, also much more pleasant and personable than the shark fin vendors. And speaking of which, for those of you interested, I posted a much longer story and update on the shark finning situation in Ecuador in October 2014, which includes the insights, thoughts and concerns of experts working on the ground. It was much more promising. Check it out.

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Today’s Pic du Jour, the site’s 783rd straight, was taken in Manta, Ecuador, on 19 May 2013.

All images © Bob Ramsak. All rights reserved. High resolution images available.
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