Thursday, April 21, 2016

A Week in Quito, Ecuador

Thursday, April 21, 2016

"Travel is at its most rewarding when it ceases to be about reaching a destination and becomes indistinguishable from living your life."  
 - Paul Theroux, Ghost Train to the Eastern Star

During our last week in Ecuador we remained in the capital city of Quito. We could have gone to Otavalo, to Baños, or to any of those magnificent sites the country is known for but we didn’t. Weary of three weeks of long bus rides, delayed flights, and bags constantly packed, unpacked, and repacked, we opted to while away the remaining week of our vacation doing nothing.  In those days there were no extraordinary experiences, no awe-inspiring places. There were simply small but meaningful moments that I told myself to remember.

Quito, Ecuador
No Te Metas Con Zohan

What could be more surreal than watching You Don’t Mess with the Zohan dubbed in Spanish while eating chaulafan (fried rice) in a Chinese restaurant in the middle of Quito? With my rudimentary Spanish, I could hardly grasp the dialogue in the movie, yet I had the most wonderful time. We stayed in the restaurant, our eyes glued to the small television hanging on the wall, until they had to throw us out.  

Running After a Guayasamin

There's this guy walking around the Mariscal District with an armload of Oswaldo Guayasamin prints that he is peddling for five dollars apiece. The first time I saw him he was holding up a copy of Guayasamin's El Grito III. That’s beautiful, I thought to myself then walked passed him. After a couple of minutes, I realized that I have to buy that print because it's too magnificent to pass up. But when I turned around, he was nowhere in sight. I looked all around for him but he’s simply gone.  As luck would have it, I saw him again after a few days and that time around I made sure to grab that Guayasamin that almost got away.

Christmas Day

I consider that Christmas morning one of the best moments of our trip: the muted hum of the city as it slowly came to life; the radiant sunshine glinting cheerily as we strolled around Parque La Carolina; the faint whiff of grass and dried leaves, the contrasting textures and harmonious flavors of the cevichochos we bought from one of the food stalls in the park; the gladness palpable in the faces of the people around us. Seated on a bench with the man I love beside me, I closed my eyes momentarily and felt unbounded joy and contentment, as though I had traveled for weeks be there, at that very moment.

Cevichochos is a vegetarian ceviche of Ecuadorian chocho beans, tomatoes, onions, and coriander mixed with, aji pepper, mustard, salt, lime, and hot sauce 
and topped with roasted corn and plantain chips.

1 comments:

witsandnuts said...

I hope to visit Ecuador, Bolivia and other areas in South America. I'm pleased to know that you're still blogging. I haven't blogged for a long time and when I tried to bloghop I'm quite sad to learn that some have deactivated their accounts or not blogging anymore. Oh, the good old glorious days! Take care always!

 
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