Friday, April 20, 2018

All Work and No Play - Ecuador

Contrasts in Quito.  Modern highrises, everyone drives a new car and then this guy below sells goat's milk straight from the animal on the street.  The fresh milk is supposed to help the soul.

Well, I'm back in Ecuador and I have been going nonstop.  I have visited 15 schools and universities so far this week.   They don't let me rest and I think it is because I raised my fees :) so they want to sacar la ultima gota de sangre, squeeze out the last drop of blood.

My trip to Quito on Sunday was great.  I was fortunate to get flights on AeroMexico and from Mexico City, it was nonstop 4.5 hours.  Good service and I had an exit row all to myself so that I could stretch out and watch movies.   The food was the best I've had on a flight in years and I thoroughly enjoyed it along with all the complimentary cocktails and wine they serve.

Quito is a magnificent city.  Robust, active, modern mixed with colonial and lots of hustle and bustle.  Nestled in the mountains it is a lot like Bogota.  The major difference is Ecuador has invested heavily in infrastructure and has well-constructed superhighways that beat any country I have lived in or visited. I´m now in Cuenca, which is a 40-minute flight from Quito and the situation is the same.  Oh, and did I mention the cleanliness and lack of litter on the streets?  Amazing.

I'll post some quick cell phone pics I have taken and then come back this weekend and post some more.  I will be here in Cuenca returning to Quito on Sunday morning.  Big bonus is that this afternoon I will take city tour bus, double-decker, and see all the major sites at a glance and then I can choose what I want to see tomorrow.   Sunday, I will have all day to tour Quito as my flight leaves at 8:00 a.m. and arrives 40 minutes later.

The difficult part is adjusting to the currency.  The country is dollarized so everything is in dollars, they don't have a national currency anymore.  When you earn pesos and pay in dollars, OUCH!


  1. Wow! Looking forward to your next posts. Ecuador is on our bucket list.

  2. But I was under the impression that even though it is "dollarized" that things are still relatively inexpensive... no?

  3. Sorry Kevin, I saw your comment and got lost in something else. Yes, it is very inexpensive and I can see why there are so many foreigners here. Gasoline (reg) is $1.48 a gallon. Electric runs on average $20 a month, and rents for both houses and apartments start at $150. I found a great place outside of Cuenca, 2500 sq meters, with a new house on it, for $75,000. As I said in my next blog post, I could live here. The cleanliness is just unbelievable.

  4. Sorry you are being squeezed with work but glad you have been able to carve out some personal time to explore. Great snaps :)

  5. Sounds like our next adventure!!!