Published: November 23rd 2008November 17th 2008
Australia, New Zealand and America
So at the moment I have become quite sloppy with my blog entries, with both quantity and quality. This one starts in Colombia and ends in Peru via Ecuador. I am having the time of my life and really cannot put it all down in words. Or at least that’s my excuse for being lazy.
At the moment I'm travelling with two Aussie guys. Our plan was to leave Cali in Colombia, travel to the border, cross over, head to Quito, catch another bus through the night and then a final one to Montinita in Ecuador. A total of about 36 hours sat upright the whole time. The only real incident of note was Pete having his laptop stolen. As we entered the bus in Quito, a friendly young chap, took out ticket, showed us to our seats and placed our bags under the seat for us. It was only 10 minutes later when Pete went to grab his bag he found out it was a little lighter, to the tune of a laptop. Afterwards everything added up and it was obvious what had happened. They guy had a young girl already hidden behind the seats, who was emptying them
as he paced them under. Mine had a lock on anyway and I'd pulled it back out straight away. Even in the few seconds it was down there, the girl had attempted to get into it. Welcome to Ecuador we thought. The bus driver wasn't interested so Pete would have to sort it in Montanita.
So Montanita, what a place. Unfortunately I did not really experience the cultural side of the place as most nights were spent partying until the morning and then the days were spent surfing or just chilling out. I had a good group of guys at this point and so much fun was had by all. The club we would end up in most nights was quality; sort of half beach half club. With a sand dance floor and a fire in the middle which would sometimes punish me if my dancing got a little out of had. As for the surfing; I was hoping after doing quite a bit in Australia, I would take straight to it again similar to riding a bike. This though was not the case and for the first few attempts I was pretty shocking, swallowing more salt water than
One good little experience from Montanita was drinking in a little local bar and not having to buy a beer all night. There were two young Ecuadorian bar-men playing cards behind the bar. I showed them a card trick which impressed them no end. Then they wanted more but obviously I wanted something in return and as we were in a bar, beer seemed the fitting choice. By the end they thought I was somehow a relation of the Devil but I was pretty drunk off all the free beers so all was good.
When in Montanita we met two Ecuadorian girls on holiday who took a shine to us. Not thinking anything of it we all swapped numbers and then left. The next place we were heading called Guayqual, was where they lived so we made a brief stop off there. There was not much to really see or do there. It was better having some locals show us around though, rather than a guide book.
The next day we had another bus journey and border crossing over into Peru. Dealing with a border crossing at three in the morning is not a great experience
Sunset from our hostel
and neither is having the whole bus searched by the army only an hour further down the road. As you can probably tell, bus journeys are hard work out here. I forgot to mention that I am now in the Southern Hemisphere, thanks to crossing through Ecuador.
Our first stop in Peru was another surf type village called Mancora, similar to Montanita but with a lot more sun. It’s been a while since I have actually been out in the sun, Cartagena was the last. So that was nice. The best thing about Mancora however was its food, all fresh seafood and so cheap. $1.50 for a drink, a starter and then a big seafood main dish. The starter was raw fish in lemon juice; the lemon juice actually kills all the bacteria meaning no need for cooking it. Ceviche is what I think it's called.
The way to get about Mancora is by Tuk-Tuk, a little sort of half motorbike half cart type thing. Anyway one day we ordered one from our hostel and a young guy turned up with his. When he dropped us off at our destination he asked us if we wanted to drive
back. Of course I was up for it, even though I have never ridden a motorbike before and neither had Rob but he was first up. In Spanish he gave us a quick lesson and before I knew it I was a Tuk-Tuk driver.
After a day or two in Mancora and still with Rob and Pete, the Aussies, we made our way to Trujillo. Just for a flying visit. It had two attractions one being surf and the other watching the traditional ways the local people fish. They take out to sea what looks like a flimsy type of canoe, mainly constructed of straw. Some how after fishing they manage to surf back in on them and have full nets of fish to show everyone on the beach. Rob and I managed to have a quick surf before the bus, out of there the same night. As we are heading south, each place we get to the water becomes colder. Here was so cold and even in a wetsuit full of pee it was freezing.
Next stop is up into the Andean mountains for some fun and games.
There are more photos below