Saturday, December 29, 2007

Now the Crosbys are REALLY in Ecuador!

I would have to blog several times a day to come close to capturing everything we have experiencecd. There is no way to do it. So here is all that I have to say right this second. I promise to add to it when I have more time and a head that isn´t full of EVERYTHING!

We wake up in Quito to a (typical) cloudy day and a desire to see the city. A short taxi ride to the tourist district and we arrive at the Magic Bean. A fantastic place for breakfast. Three Huervos Rancheros and an ¨Egg McSandwich¨ were fantastic. It was also our first experience with the fresh juice that is rampant in Ecuador. Does it really get better than fresh juice? Not in Quito (read that as their food is no good). The best part of the Magic Bean? They were playing Blues Travelers' ¨Sweet Pain¨. Pretty Cool to me.

Peace Corps offices - see previous post.

Andrea then decided that she should pick up the package that Tom had sent to her. Apparently picking up a package is a serious process for her. It literally involves going to the Post Office, then the bank and then back to the Post Office after paying the decided value of the package. Note to all of Andrea´s loved ones - NEVER declare a value when you send her something. Ecuador has some crazy rules - it´s okay for them to charge her up to $300 for a package. Weird and wrong. Luckily, Andrea has a canny ability to talk the Ecuadorians into anything. She wears them out. Honestly, she sometimes wears me out! By the way, when she dealt with the package (which she LOVED Tom!) she dropped us off at a large fruit market (see pictures when we post them).

So the REAL adventure starts here - the Teleferico in Quito. Think the gondola at Loon but way less secure and no snow to cover the jagged mountainside and no Dad to talk Mom out of her extreme fear of heights. The ride was so amazing - I´ve never been at 10,000 feet before - and you could see the entire Northern part of Quito.

So when we got to the top and stepped out Toni declared that she would never step foot in the Teleferico again and that there must be another way down. Andreita went into action. She spotted a service truck and asked the men whether or not they could drive us down the mountain. They were so confused by the statement and asked if Toni needed a medic. She tried to explain that Mom wasn´t sick but that there was no way she was riding down the mountain again. A couple of beers (see my eventual ode to Pilsener) and some ¨sandwiches¨ later, and we hopped into the old truck with two locals and headed down the mountain.

Andrea will tell you - the trip was amazing! Hundreds of dogs happily ran beside us as we bumped along the mountain rode and drove through the town of 80 in a Fantastic Voyage. We saw so much and the driver put up with all of my broken Spanish questions.

Dinner at an all-you-can-eat Tapas and Vino restaurant in the ¨tourist¨ section of town. The best part? Alex saying this: ¨When do the all you can eat tacos start?¨ Funny. By the way - the tapas are nasty.

The day ends there - we go back to the hotel and pass out. Well, Mom and I passed out and Alex and Andrea went to the Casino. By the way - I got my first sun burn on the first day. It was a sweet v-neck burn. And, it was cloudy.

Taxi ride to the airport - we have started passing out Starbursts as tips (with our tips) and they LOVE it! Rented a car - terrible Hertz experience. I will not expand now but ask a Crosby before you rent a car in Ecuador. We´ll give you the down and dirty of the rental car experience!

A trip to the Super Maxi...Get your mind out of the gutter - it´s a grocery store. We stocked up on water and snacks.

Drive to Tena through crazy Mountains and ParĂ¡mus - tons of horses and cows. Beautiful. Then it turned to landslides and fog. So weird to be driving through. Did I mention that Andreita grabbed a bus in Quito for us to follow out to Tena? A hilarious and great idea. The bus driver was fantastic and even used his turn signals to let us know what was happening.

We stopped for lunch and a drink in Baeza where we also met up with A-Jeff Dynamite.

Enough said for now....I will finish with that cliff hanger later because there is a poor guy begging to use the free Internet here at the best Hostel ever. You´ll have to wait to learn more - we didn´t get here until 12.28.07 and I have so much more to say.

Catch up with you at the next free internet place!

No comments: