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Published: October 11th 2009
Aino from Finland
my travelpartner and ladyfriend
Nothing can distrup my good mood this morning walking through a still foggy Quito devoid of traffic at this early hour. These Ecuadorians are definitely not early risers. I feel a bit like hiking the streets of a past era, a pre-conquistadores time though the whitewashed and red-tiled houses, the many colonial churches reminding me that the times of complete seperations of the American continents from power hungry medieval European rulers are a far away reality.
Leaving the Quito historic centre behind, I enter a residential area full with modern looking shopping malls, embassies and prosperous looking banks. Obviously these are the middle- and upper-class residential neighborhoods and under normal circumstance of no importance to an intripid backpacker on the South-American Gringo Trail like me...
When finally I make it to the airport, still nearly two hours to wait for Aino's plane, my Finnish travelpartner and ladyfriend from last year in Mexico...coffee, strong and black like the darkest night while admiring the snow-capped mountains surrounding Quito slowly emerging from the early morning fog, the rising sun promising another mild spring-like day despite the roughly only 25 kilometer to the equator.
The airport lounge is full with colorfull indio women dressed in black long skirts and white shirts laced with blue embroidery and the typical South-American dark felt hats, boiling tea over ancient looking stoves and snotnosed local kids running around impatiently, tourist shops manned by the Otavaleño indios, reputedly the best and prosperous business people in all of Latin America, selling hand weaven blankets and assorted tourist oriented goods.
With only a handfull planes a day landing at Quito airport the airport is a tranquil place apperently used by many locals as place to hang around most of the day but with Lufthansa flight 104 descending things slowly come to life, custom officials taking their seats, baggaga handlers waking up from their slumber in platic airport chairs, police in khaki uniforms and bambu canes cleaning out the waiting lounge. I presume a good impression to first time backpackers from Europe must be on their police minds.
When among the crowd of scruffy alternatives, a bit like rejects from the former Asian hippy trail, wearing second-hand clothes with unshaven faces and weary eyes due to twenty or more hours in the air above fast oceans, I discover this petite female body burdened under a oversized bright red colored backpack, my joy knows no bounds...
I remember her as James described her, plump and short, thin straw blondish hair and a unhealthy skin, no I see a blosh on her face instead of the horrible looking acne from last year, slender and hair full with life...I realise she has taken my telephonic advice to heart, jogging, jogging and more jogging in the crips natural Finnish air...a female metamorphoses has taken place here!!!
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