In the middle of one of those thoughts I ran a red light, and a cop pulled us over. It went down a little something like this with my English translation provided.
"You ran a red light." The cop said.
"Yes. Sorry. Can you forgive me? I'm not from around here." As if he didn't notice.
"I can't do that. I have to issue you a ticket."
"How much is the ticket?"
"Yes it does."
"Can I pay you the fine now?" I heard that is what you say to the cop if you get pulled over in Ecuador.
"We can do that."
"$50." I guess a 50% discount for paying at the time of the incident. I like it.
"How about $40?" Everything is negotiable in Ecuador.
"Sure. Can you hand it to me under your registration?"
And off we went. It is common in Ecuador to "pay" your fines to the issuing officer. I guess it serves as a bonus for the officer and an immediate punishment for the violator. Either way, it was my first bribe, and another first while living in Ecuador.