El Market

Trip Start Aug 22, 2012
Trip End Jun 16, 2013

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Flag of Ecuador  ,
Saturday, September 8, 2012

Oh my!  Our Spanish doesn't seem to be improving much.  We repeat over and over, "no comprendo" and it's rather embarrassing.  Maybe attending a Spanish school is in order at some point although we (or at least Donna) have talked about this since we travelled in Guatemala in 2001 and still have not done it.

Accumulating 'stuff' during our travels, especially early on in the trip, is not what we want to do but visiting the largest market in Ecuador on its biggest day of the week is a temptation that Donna cannot ignore.  Like treating Jim to photograph a feast of colour, faces and activity Donna is compelled to buy 'un poquito'.  So, off we went for hours of fun.  Ecuadorian people are so friendly and bargaining here is a very different and pleasant experience than in some other places in which we have travelled.

The highlight of this part of our trip was the 'mouse' street performer -  an incredibly talented man who entertained the audience on either side of the street by playing with the drivers held up in traffic.  Or perhaps better described - he held up traffic and played with the drivers and passengers in the cars. His interactive and perfectly timed comic antics kept everyone in stitches except a few ornery drivers. We watched him on two nights and never tired of him or the crowd.  He caught Jim taking pics and hammed it up for everyone.

We hiked along a volcano caulderra with a panoramic view of surrounding Andes, sierra and a laguna below.  We climbed from about 13,000 feet to 14,000 feet in hot sun.  Although the air temperature is quite mild (about 20 degrees), the equatorial sun can become very hot especially at high altitudes.  Between Donna's achy knees and the climb, it was a VERY slow walk.  Thank goodness Jim likes to stop to photograph.

Following a couple of days in Otavalo, without any real planning except to send an email to book a room at our next destination, we boarded a bus to Quito and luck was on our side because we had to wait only 10 minutes for the bus to Mindo.  We arrived in Mindo exhausted from 2 and a half weeks of constant activity.  We were ready for some R&R!

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Trish on

I loved all of the faces at the market. There is NOTHING like the faces of the people where you travel...... Somehow their expressions just seem so genuine, so full of wisdom some of them, and they always make me curious about their stories. And all we need to do is see their smiles and we can feel their spirit. Thank you for sharing!

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