In late August 2016, we were in Greece discovering the country, its culture and enjoying the delightful food and climate as part of our research on the author of Zorba, the Greek, Nikos Kazantzakis. In the middle of a working lunch one day, when we were in Sciathos island, Eric gets a call - it was the President of Ecuador, Rafael Correa himself!
He invited Eric to perform at first international arts festival in Loja. It was a big honour and an exciting opportunity to help the president in his strategy to spread culture to all parts of his country.
Eric had become acquainted with the President a couple of years previously in Avignon. He offered his support to the president and his team to design and build the first arts festival in this rural town. Then there were several delays, due in part to the 2016 earthquake, when a state of emergency was declared in the country.
It was not easy to squeeze in this very long trip to Loja into an already busy schedule, but Eric really wanted to support the Ecuadorian president, and so suitable a date was found.