I brought the phone with my to Ecuador, thinking surely it would work here but NO, it is blocked here. But, hopefully, I will be able to find someone to unblock it so that I can use it as a phone and as a camera as I have in so many other places around the world.
But, I have the iphone that my sweet sobrina loaned to me which I am using as a camera ( and Ipod) but cannot use as a phone as it is locked into Verizon. So, I have some good pictures to post here for your viewing pleasure....should you so desire:)
On Sunday, Lissete took me and another volunteer, Natasha, to La Mitad del Mundo and on Monday we all went to a mass led by my host mother's brother who is a sacerdote. After the mass, they prepared a deliciosa almuerzo for us and we had a lovely time afterwards to chat. Finally, on the way home, the family drove me to a tourist attraction of which they are very proud, La Virgen, which is high on a hill overlooking all of Quito and we continued through the Historic District which is amazing.
This lucky country has never suffered internal ( civil) so they have not destroyed their country as so many other countries have. At least as far as I know other than the Incan and Spanish occupations. Nor, have they been attacked/bombed by extranjeros so many of their old buildings are still in tact. Also, another thing in their favor is that they do not seem to suffer earthquakes, hurricanes or other natural disasters. They do have 16 volcanos within their boundaries so that is a threat ( 3 or 4 of which are currently active)
The Historical District, of which I only have one or two photos since we were in a car on the way home after a long day, is very very charming and many of the buildings have been restorado and are just absolutely beautiful. Others, many others, are in various states of disrepair and are awaiting an investor and restoration. I can't imagine how anyone could assess the internal integrity of the foundation and adjacent buildings but there must be a way. A lot of money appears to have been invested already.
One aspect that is so so charming, which was present in Leon Nicaragua's few remaining colonial buildings, is the interior plazas with the surrounding balconies and windows going up several floors, all looking down into the interior plazas. This combined with Quito's very pleasant and mild climate explains the appeal of the place.
Now, for some photos:
|The pictures above are of my host mother making humitas...a delicious cosa made of corm meal,a little fresh cheese and wrapped in corn husk, then boiled to cook and served warm...Yummmmmm !!!|
|Lissete at Le Mitad del Mundo ( the middle of the world)...it started out very hot and sunny.|
|They had a colobri ( hummingbird) painting contest like many cities have cows, bulls, horses, etc. The entries are now housed at the Middle of the World.|
|This is the entrance to the Middle of the World|
|A view from the top of that monument...I think to the West. The big bldg to the right ( white and black) is the UN building for South America UNASUR|
|I took this photo to show the money plant. This is a display of a woman of an indigenous tribe, not sure which one, but she has her baby and some money plant. Our grandmother in Juniata County grew the money plant too.|
|This shows the clothing of a indigenous tribe....jaguar skin. Apparently there are still a lot of them in the Amazonian part of the country.|
|Fortunately for all, I had one lovely foot in the northern hemisphere and one in the southern, at least for a few seconds.|
|This one is for Ramelle. He told me to watch out for the shrunken head sellers along the road. Hopefully you can read the words...tells the story. Have not seen any heads...peoples or monkeys.|
|This is a view of part of Quito and the Andes in the background . Those folks in the photo are just other extranjeros. The Ecuadorianos never wear shorts.|
|This is a quick shot from the car of the Basicila in the Historical district of Quito. I want to get inside. It sits on a knoll and is huge.|
So, thats it for now,
Love to all,