Paul Acee's Ecuador

Cuenca Pedestrian Trick


This is a little Cuenca pedestrian trick I discovered a couple of months ago. I do a lot of walking in the historical district which is very often very crowded.

It’s not unusual at all to have a crowd of people coming in your direction that take up the entire sidewalk, very often this is school kids. Or it might just be a couple walking shoulder to shoulder on a sidewalk that’s only wide enough for two people coming your way.

So what do you do? For months I’d just step off the curb on to the street and walk around them. In the historical district this can be extremely dangerous with buses and cars flying by and very close to the sidewalk also.

One day on Calle Larga which is a very busy street my eyes became riveted on a trashcan. This one actually.

cuenca pedestrian trick 
I stood there staring at that trashcan for about a minute. That’s an extremely busy part of the street and people pass that trashcan all day long but never run into it. So I decided to conduct an experiment and be like the trashcan myself.

As I continued walking in the historical district every time a couple walking shoulder to shoulder or a crowd of people were heading towards me I’d just stop, and they would instinctively just walk around me just as they would a tree or a trashcan.

I do this all the time now and it works 100% of the time.

Paul Acee

Author: Paul Acee

Retired and living in Ecuador.


  1. Paul…you did this trick for a different reason than I do…but it works. Especially for children (and since most of the Cuenca populations is under age 30 that covers almost everyone), I resented having to step off the curb. I am, after all, tercera edad. Now I simply stop and let them go around me. Works every time!

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