BUENOS DIASS CHICOS Y CHICAS
I've finallllly left Quito, where I spent far more days than I anticipated with some good company. I made it to Banos, where I've been exerting a ton of energy doing a ton of adrenaline packed activities like canyoning down waterfalls and swinging on the edge of the world at Casa del Arbol and riding donwhill on fucked up bikes in terrible weather to chase waterfalls CUS YOLO (and cus I'm a 90s babies!!)... Elizabeth, my friend from home, has also arrived, so we've spent a lot of time giggling/catching up/sharing meals and laughing at all the terrible decisions that were made the night beforeee.. ITS SO GOOD TO HAVE HER HEREEEE.. we're LITERALLY having THE BEST TIME EVER.. LITERALLY (for extra emphasis!!)
But Quito.. man, i just couldn't quit it.. it's a massive city with tons to do, though for the amount of days I was there... i accomplished very little.. but it's okay.i had great company and managed to the following:
- Visit the equator TWICE cus it was so niceeeee… the Corollas effect was in full effect plus there were other weird scientific phenomenons like apparently its easier to balance an egg on the equator but more difficult to walk in a straight line (which is already hard enough for me when im sober and not on the equator) due to gravitational forces.. science... its amazing!!!
- Take the teleferico with this extremely charasmatic/funny/charming Spaniarddd hottie wannabeee (but he's really German) all the way up to the top of Cruz Loma, which is almost 4000m (13,000ft) where we enjoyed the panoramic view of the city for a total of .5 seconds before it started down pouring :(
- Watch Ecuador beat Bolivia en mas lluvia with some fun chicas (hi Jackieee!!) at a bar where i discovered the wonder that is Zhumir (local alcoholic beverage pronounced SHMEAR)
- Force our cab driver to make a detour to go a Zhumir run... as I kept singing SHMEAR RUNN sung to the tune of the great American classic, BEEE-DOUBLE EEE-DOUBLE R-U-N.. BEER RUN.. he was not entiendoinggg (yay Spanglish!)
- Get in an enclosed 4X4 that looked like the back of a police van without actual seats or working windows and smelt like cow shit just because a random man offered to take us back to our hostel for a whole $2 LESS THAN A TAXI.... this is not the safe cab Lonely planet tells u to take.. but i got extra booze $$ soooo i think i made a good choice.
- Visit churches in the Old Town, where I did not atone for any of my recent sins (not enough time in the world!) but instead, admired the Basillica since they had cool animals on their facade instead of creepy gargoyles that were representative of Ecuador's four regions: Andes, Coast, Galapagos, and Amazon
- Eat a lot of carbs.. including pizza without tomato sauce.. (basically fancy grilled cheese)
- Drink way too much boxed wine which resulted in dancing at some discotechs in gringolandia aka Plaza de Fochhh.. they played terrible music, but they also played BEY so i was in my elementtt and could shake my boootayy
- Consume breakfast/dinner/drinks while enjoying this beautiful view
- Work on my cardio cus the city is so damn high.. at 2,850 meters, Quito is the highest official capital in the world
- Watch Netflix and chill
- Enjoy fun company EVERY SINGLE NIGHT at Secret Garden (miss you all!!)
I also went to Otovalo on Saturday, a little town north of Quito with a massive market with Elizabeth and Brigette, one of the girls I tagged along with during the Quilotoa trek. Unfortunately, I was unable to bid on llamas and alpacas at the animal market SINCE THEY WEREN'T THEREEEEEE (grrr.. i felt swindled, especially cus i woke up at 530AM). but i did get a bracelet, an alpaca scarf (most tourists want to buy colorful souveniers. i wanted a black one.. #NEWYORKERFOREVER), and a gorgeous leather backpack that only cost me $60 (and yes, i'm using it as displacement.. who needs a boyfriend when i can have a bag.. one will carry my emotional baggage in a nicer package HAHAHAHAHAA)
We met a bunch of ex-pats in the town, including Jay, this Canadian dude who makes some of the most beautiful leather bags I've ever seen.. he sells them at JJ Leathersmith check it out! he invited us to take a peek at his workshop/home, which had these extraordinary high ceilings and huge, wall length windows.. i was in complete awe/calculating how much a place like this in NYC would cost/wondering whether i could settle down in Ecuador if it meant having a place like his.. the place was stunningggg
apparently Ecuador was recently named as the top destination for ex-pats due to its low cost of living and high quality of life (Singapore, Thailand, Australia and Canada also made the list!) The average age of expats in Ecuador is 52.8, which is wayyy higher than the median.. We did meet a bunch of retired US citizens who were incredibly AMERICAN.. and by that, i mean super chatty.. and really nice.. they told us fun stories... i can see why they, and so many others, have fallen in love with the country :) i'm looking forward to chillen/partying (hopefully more chillen) on a beach for the next few days :) next up Montanitasssss... then Cuenca.. followed by 10 days in the Galapagos.. can't waittt. WOOP WOOP!