Thursday, February 23, 2012

Memories of Ecuador

Remember when this was a TRAVEL BLOG? It feels soooo long ago... I can't believe that I've been back living in reality for 6 months already! Nevertheless, I'm feeling ready to hit the road again.

Anyway, apparently I neglected to post this blog entry after I wrote it and it's been sitting in a file labeled "drafts". So here you go, three entries from Ecuador! As you can see I liked Peru ALOT better.

evil monkey

Peruvian paradise

flash flood
July 18, 2011
It’s all a learning process. The jungle trip will be a lesson in patience for me. Today I grew very frustrated with NorthDakota, but in the great span of things, the drama with him means very little. Just look at all that has happened in 2 weeks! Two weeks ago I was sick in Arequipa and that was the only thing I could focus on. Since then I had that terrible night in Piura, had a week in paradise with The Austrian, had the border crossing/bus trip from hell where I practically got kidnapped and was terrified for my life, got caught in a flash flood and rappelled down humongous waterfalls in a canyon, and today I was robbed by a monkey. In the context of all of this, NorthDakota leading us down a road to nowhere while I was ogled at in my bikini and then jeopardizing our jungle trip with his indecision, well it really doesn’t mean that much.

fern gully

piranha dinner
lago limoncocha
July 20, 2011 - The Amazon - 
I am ready to leave the jungle. The Amazon is so immense and dense that when you hike through it you really don’t see anything besides more giant plants. Being on the water is better because you can see unique birds, monkeys, and fish for piranhas! Speaking of which, piranhas don’t taste that great. They are okay, but the biggest problem is getting the meat from between their razor sharp bones. They have bones/spines where normal fish don’t! If you accidentally swallow a bone (which I did), it really hurts!

Anyway, I think I prefer the cloud forest for hiking - it is just as beautiful but you can see so much more! Tonight we are going out on the boat/canoe after dark to search for caimans (relative of the crocodile) and tomorrow we will head back to the bus for a 6-hour ride back to Tena. On Friday morning I will head toward Quito and then at the Quito bus station decide whether to go to Otavalo or Mindo next.

Otavalo Market
for the eatin'

July 22, 2011
Ecuador keeps getting negative awesome points. I arrived in Otavalo today and ALL the hotels/hostels were full. Tomorrow is the famous Saturday Market in Otavalo, but it happens EVERY Saturday. How was I supposed to know how quickly the rooms would book up?! So I walked around the city for HOURS lugging around my giant backpack which slowly crushed my spine and spirit in search of a place to stay. Hotel after hotel I was declined entry. I found a Catholic church and planned to hide out and sleep in the back corner... they have to let me in, right?! No room at the inn - a classic story. Is this how Mary felt when she went from inn to inn and there was no room? Did she first feel abandoned because she had to sleep in a crappy manger, but then feel lucky that she had SOMEWHERE to give birth? Next to the church I dragged myself into yet another hotel and when the man at the desk said they were full, I burst into tears. Between sobs, in broken Spanish, I explained that everywhere was full and now I had be like the virgin Mary and sleep in a church or barn! The man, sensing that he had a lunatic in his presence, picked up the phone and dialed every hotel in town until he finally found a place to send me.

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