Published: August 8th 2007June 29th 2007
Hi guys! We had much better luck leaving Puerto Lopez. We took a bus and then a short flight to a city in Southern Ecuador called Cuenca. We really love this city! It's an old colonial city with beautiful architecture and cobblestone streets with a big river running through it.
Our luck with the weather has been awful! We went to see the remaining Ingapirca structures and it was cold and it drizzled. Actually, we were disappointed with the whole thing all together. The structures weren't anything special to look at. I guess if you are a history buff it would be worth checking out, but it didn't do much for us. As Dan and I have been saying a lot here in Ecuador, maybe it would have been better if the sun was shining. On the bus ride back we were sent on a detour up through the mountains because of another landslide (we found out later it had something to do with a gold mining company messing up the water). Nothing like in Baños, but still a landslide. We had to go around it in the bus. Dan said to me, "There's nothing like driving on an off-road-vehicle
trail in a city bus". It was very bouncy and a bus in front of us got stuck. Loads of fun.
We woke up the next day in Cuenca to the sun blazing and we were so glad. We walked around the city and shopped and ate and looked for velcro. Dan needed some for his camera backpack. We had a good laugh at ourselves trying to describe velcro to people. We actually found some! $0.35 a yard...not bad!
There´s definitely no shortage of sweets in Ecuador. Literally every 20 feet is a shop with pastries, ice cream, or cake. Our plan to tone up a little on our active vacation has back-fired. For lunch the other day we had banana splits.
We are back in Quito now and have had 2 more days of sunshine! Dan and I had so much fun picking out things for the kids at the orphanage. Thanks to the staff at Mason and Trombly Schools where I work in Michigan we were able to get so much stuff! The lady at the orphanage said they mostly needed baby hygiene items as well as school supplies. We got tons of baby wash
and shampoo, desitin, q-tips, wipes, etc. We also got tons of crayons, pencils, markers, paint sets, glue, alphabet and number puzzles, things for the teacher, etc. We even had enough left over to buy them fun stuff like stickers, girly hair clips, trucks, basketballs, and legos. Things are so much cheaper here! We went to the orphanage with the stuff and they were very happy. One of the nuns took us on a tour of the orphanage while Louis, our driver, translated for us. There are 110 children there ranging from a few days old up to 18 years old. There was a little boy, also named Louis, who was following us around. What a cutie. He´s 4 years old and he´s developmentally delayed with minimal speach and he´s just a tiny little thing. Both of his parents have Downs Syndrome. I think he´s eventually going to catch up and be just fine, though. I took him around on the tour with us. It was cute, when I told him my name he said, "NeeKee"!
We leave for Panama tomorrow and we are crossing our fingers for good weather.
I hope all is well and thanks again for
Nikki & Dan
There are more photos below