A new country!
Trip Start Aug 07, 2008
99Trip End Dec 10, 2009
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The journey from the border to Quito from the border was hell. The cultural change was apparent as soon as we´d crossed the border. People were in you face selling you all kinds of crap, you were mobbed by bus ticket touts who had their hands all over you and were trying to drag your bags towards the buses.
Despite confirming that our bus was ´directo´, we stopped and picked up EVERYONE that stuck their hand out, and dropped people off on every corner and street. Once in Quito, we seemed to have transformed into a local bus - people were hopping on for only a block or two. What. The. F*ck ??? And it was raining, there was a child in my leg space and we were on top of the motor with Die Hard 4 blaring above us.
I realise that one day in a border town and bus (in the rain) isn´t sufficient time to form a valid opinion on anything, never mind a country, but my first impression is: "What a sh*thole, i want to go back to Colombia" - i hope it changes in time".
We checked into The Secret Garden, a well reviewed hostel in Quito, which we had heard many good things about. They´re all true. BUT we´re checking out tomorrow morning because...
- Reception is a farce, as is checking in and out. The volunteer ´staff´ gringos have an attitude. Not a bad one as such, they just look down on you. F*ck that.
- No outside food or drinks, no kitchen, public restaurant on roof terrace
- Too many Americans and ´kids´
- Restoration work banging from 8am onwards
- Too many rules, too clunky an operation. I´m not some anarchist, but it really is ott.
- Too big
It is not really a true backpacker place. If you´re away for a short time and have cash to splash on fancy meals, overpriced booze and internet etc you´ll be in heaven. Me? Well, it just grated.