The couple of days before we arrived I started reading the Dangers & Annoyances section of LP guide and got myself a little freaked out. Robberies, armed holdups… I jumped on the Thorntree to see if there was any discussion about where to stay or where to learn spanish and all I got was info on a woman gone missing in Ecuador, with her bank account drained over consecutive days. Aie aie aie. It was just like watching that plane crash show just before we left!But thus far all good. Quito is surrounded by richly green mountains, such a contrast to the drier Andes of Chile. It´s a poor city, though. So sad to see gorgeous little girls selling ciggies. But it´s pretty lively (today´s Sunday and lots of promenading in the Old Town). A mime on the street was imitating passers-by and latched onto John. Good old JK handled it with aplomb, swinging his arms wide, scratching his head and looking at the fella between his legs. Mucho laughtero.
Now it´s Wednesday and we´ve settled into a lovely lazy lifestyle. We´re both having two-hour one-on-one spanish lessons each day in our hostel, which adds a real sense of purpose to the day. I´m loving it. The first lesson my teacher went through the pronounciation of the alphabet which i´d learned ages ago and I was thinking oh-oh, but since then we´ve just pretty much chatted for the two hours, covering the likes of ABBA and the Free Trade agreement.
Then we head out to check out the town for a few hours and then we come back to our snug room and just chill, man. Haven´t been out on the town at night, but don´t really mind too much. This travelling at 31 is so different to age 21!! We´ve both been a bit rundown, actually, so loving the quiet life.
Some not-so-fun bits: John picked up a case of fleas (we think) in Santiago!!! We loved our hotel, so this is a bit sad. We bombarded the bites with tea tree oil and our strongest insect repellant which has done the trick. I can´t believe john had fleas!! He was a bit cooler with it. Now the fleas have gone, he´s gone and got a head cold. Probably all the adjustment to altidude plus the backpacker thang. Quito´s pretty polluted, some of the stuff coming out of the buses and trucks!
We´re gonna head to the famous Otavalo markets on the weekend. To buy a poncho or not to buy a poncho, these are the problems we face.