A Travellerspoint blog

December 2009

Letters From The Amazon - Part Eleven

PART ELEVEN: THE 27 CLUB, CHRISTMAS SCHOOL SPIRIT AND THE FORCES OF NATURE

Hola - well I turned 27! who would have thought but you´re only as old as you feel right? and of course age is just a number. Well here´s more in the day of my life in the Amazon.....

I started the week off by going to one of the schools in the Rainforest where some of the volunteers who teach English go most mornings of the week, but of course their Spanish is very good so I tagged along to see. We had to take a 5 minute bus ride to the 'Monte Alegre School' which was basically two small green buildings which were the classrooms and a patch of land outside where some of the children were playing football.

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What amazed me, despite the fact they got excited to see that there were new visitors, they were getting into the classroom through the wired windows and the teacher was helping them! The classroon itself is pretty sweet. It seems like only half of the children participate in the class - they kind of just split the classroom in two and pull their desks up to the whiteboard thats leant against the wall. Its quite funny actually sitting back and watching as it seemed near impossible to teach teach - they just didn´t seem that interested. The teacher in the classroom was busy teaching the other class by drawing cartoons on the board, but there seemed to be no order at all. The kids were running around the classroom chasing eachother and some even walking out! But some kids were good - getting up to write the english answer on the white board, but by the way I saw it, there was just hardly any effort from them to listen.

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Then one of the volunteers teaching got out his guitar and started to strum to the rhythum for the 'ABC song' which made things pretty fun for them and for me to sing along to. It even got to a point of giving up with teaching and they started to sing ´We Wish You A Merry Christmas´ and the ´Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes´Song! but Christmas time is pretty weird here seeing Christmas Trees in the windows and lights when its sweltering hot. After the class was done, the children went outside to play football again and we made our way onto the main road to sit on the bridge to hitchhike back to the reserve. I looked around the forest and noticed a large patch of land had been cleared with new trees sprouting out, even though one day it would be replenished with fully grown trees, the sight of the barron land sure looked ugly.....and many areas of the Amazon look like this....the downer of clearing the forest so much is apart from loosing the biodiversity abundant in the rainforest, we encourage contributing factors of global warming by destroying the earth's largest land base storage of CO2 by cutting down the trees

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Later on the the reserve - I decided to go up the bird tower again with two new volunteers. The sun was blazing as we set off trekking into the reserve to find the tower buckled up with harnesses. The further you go in, the thicker the canopy becomes, so you´re nearly oblivious to how the weather is looking. As I buckled myself on to the tower which is actually only wide enough to fit both my hands on (really it is narrow), I ascended to about 25 metres above the canopy and started to feel a strong gust of wind with the tree branches swaying around me.

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I looked down at the boys slowly following and called down to them warning it was getting very blustery. I reached the observation deck first now at 30 metres above the canopy and looked across the Amazon to see nothing but pure sunshine and blue skies to my left and foreboding black and grey skies to my right - we had missed the clear spell as the boys came up to join me and there was a crack of thunder and lightning and the black clouds split open and we could see the rain pouring down on the forest in the distance as they slowly creeped towards us.

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The Amazonian storm approaching......

Now the wind was really picking up as the storm was growing closer to us balancing 30 metres above the canopy! We decided it wasn´t the best idea to stick around, so the boys started to hastily start their descent and then I followed. I took one last look out and the blackness was on top of us and darkness fell over the Amazon as the raindrops started to trickle over me. Getting myself back on the ladder - it was swaying from the wind that was getting more and more aggressive and the rain poured harder soaking me as I was trying to keep my grip on the ladder with one hand and changing the karibeener on the harness so I could go lower. The trees were now really rocking about and their roots only go down a metre so they do tend to blow over in storms. It was extreme but what a thrill! I finally made it down in the storm and we had to run through the forest as the thunder roared and lightning cracked woah!! Lets just say we got our full supply of water that day!.......

Speaking of water - I regularly go and bathe in the Rio Napo after work - it´s my most favourite thing to do here in the Rainforest, to and play in the water. The boys fancied putting some life jackets on and actually swimming into the heart of the River and be carried down. The water looked rapid as I watched them swim into the middle and could see their heads bobbing up as I called after them as a joke ´Watch out for Anacondas!´ and carried on bathing. When I looked up again, they had disappeared but didn´t think anything of it. When I got out the river, I could see the bend further down and noticed three figures walking on the shore which I was a bit confused about as it hadn´t seemed very far - It had turned out they had disappeared because they had been swept to the wrong side of the river and sucked into a whirlpool! they said if they didn´t have their life jackets they probably may have drowned - yikes. I later floated a bit down the river but not to that extreme - scary forces in the Amazon.... and look what we found joining us in cleaning our teeth...hello Mr Scorpion....

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Adios!

Sal.

Posted by SalBolton82 11:19 Archived in Ecuador Tagged animals rainforest plants south america amazon ecuador tena medicines Comments (0)

Letters From The Amazon - Part Twelve

PART TWELVE: JOURNEY TO MISHUALLI

Hola! Really long blog this one is gonna be as I've had quite an adventure recently....

Well I'm not your average English girl, quite an adventurous girl actually if you've not come to that conclusion yet from following the last parts of this blog. Anyway, I'm one to tire of routine and sameness and having been at the reserve for over a month, really wanted to explore the Amazon further, so I decided to pack my bag and go it alone.......well sort of.

Giving a call to a jungle lodge in a nearby town called Misahualli for the weekend. Their office was in Quito, so I spoke to this guy called Luis who told me I could join a group and be taken deeper into the forest and have an english translator - yes!
So.....having made arrangements, I got up early to catch a 6:45am bus outside the reserve, and sods law awoke to the foreboding sounds of horrendous crashing and rumbling on the roof of my cabaña and realised I had to get up and head into the jungle in a thunder storm. As I waited on the main road getting soaked, Francisco, an old man who is the handyman at the reserve, came out dressed in a white poncho and mumbled to me asking where I was going to. I told him I was heading to Misahualli down river and he was thrilled to tell me his house was there and that I could come with him (good news for someone not entirely sure where they were going). The bus came soaring down the road screeching to a halt past us and then reversing back to pick us up, very funny. The bus in the early morning was packed and I had to wedge myself between people while Francisco sat on the step. A few moments later, he yelled for me to get off the bus and stepped out onto the dirt track with a corroded sign saying ´Beinvenidos a Puerto Misahualli´.

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The dirt track led into the forest which was smouldering with the 7am clouds as we started to trudge through the rain down the path greeting morning passerbys. The rain carried on until we came to a huge bridge across the Rio Napo leading into the small town of Misahualli. Francisco knew of the hotel 'Él Albergue Español' where my port of call was and walked me up a small hill to the hotel where we were met by this young girl who was slightly confused why I was there. It turned out, there was no group at the lodge and that her husband Pier - the english translator was sick.....great

So I really was taking a solo adventure two hours up river on a canoe which I had to wait an hour for. I hung around Mishaualli playing with the hotel dogs until I was called down to the bank. She had arranged for a canoe to take me to the lodge an hour and a half away up river and I helped push the canoe out into the river after some ´technical problem´with the motor and off down river we went away from the Port of Mishualli. I sat on the side of the canoe, leaning over and sticking my hand into the water, spraying it up and watching the riverside life go by.... men fishing, ladies panning for gold and washing little kids racing canoes. The clouds hovering above the forest canopy in a dream like illusion was spectacular to cruise into as I headed on my solo voyage further into the Amazon.

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After a couple of hours, my driver slowed the canoe down and pulled up to the bankside where a guy was standing waving. He got on board and introduced himself as Ramon (another Ramon) and was my tour guide for the weekend! however....Ramon spoke no english - oh the fun to come! (I thought to myself this would be good for me, character building, no english speaking in the middle of the jungle all weekend). A short river ride further up, we pulled up to the bankside again to some steps, which you wouldn´t even have noticed if Ramon hasn't have revealed, very secret.
I jumped off the canoe and bounded up the stairs amongst maize fields till I reached this beautiful lodge. The lodge had room for 40 guests and I was the only one staying there! so I had this beautiful lodge all to myself in the calmness of Amazonia. After picking a room, spoilt for choice and dumping my bag. Ramon invited me to lunch in the restaurant where they gave me soooo much to eat! it was like three full courses. Around the lodge, birds were lingering - two green parrots and this huge Scarlet MaCaw named Miguel who tried to bite my boots, not the most friendliest of parrots - he clambered down his perch and walked off along the restaurant when he was bored with you!..charming......

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After lunch, Ramon took me in the canoe down river where we had to hold on to a table that they were carrying in the canoe. We pulled up to the side of a bank to the ´Jaguar Reserve´where we had to clamber up the mud and into the reserve. Ramon was armed with a machete and we made our way through the vines, bugs and bushes - whenever Ramon saw something of interest, he would stop and try to explain to me what it was and I tried to understand the best I could (this is where I needed that damn English Translator!) but it was quite funny having to use body language and nodding along answering 'Si' ha. I actually felt privaledged in a way that I wasn't tagging along with a big tourist group struggling to hear what Ramon would be saying. Here I was having a very unique experience, having my own private ranger under no stresses or strict schedule or the forest being drowned out by many voices. Despite my lost in translation, Ramon and I had some fun in the forest.

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Further into the reserve, we came across some vines of a 500 year old tree - it was the biggest tree I had ever seen in my life! Ramon gestured that I should swing on the vines but I had to hold on tight - I jumped (literally) at the chance and as I swung out like Tarzan the vines propelling me away and I looked down to realise I had swung out over a ravine!! ahhhhhhh!!!!! my grip started to slip slightly but fortunetely I swung back into the forest towards Ramon and we both started to climbing the roots of this mother of a tree - seriously they were GIGANTIC - but good fun. New leader in my tree climbing conquests.

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Blending in with the wildlife...

After exploring more of the forest, discovering animal traps, lots of fungi and medicinal plants of the Amazon, we took the canoe further down the river to visit the indigenous family and a shaman. We pulled up to the pebbled shore where a young girl no older than about 12 or 13 was laying out clothes to dry in the hot sun. She seemed shy and walked ahead of us through the cocoa and corn fields as we shook hands with ladies coming through them. At the end of the path, we came to a clearing with a wooden house one storey high with clothes hung everywhere with chickens, puppies and kittens running around aswell as excited kids rushing to greet Ramon and I. Not being able to understand half of what was being said - I held a kitten and looked around their basic but simple home as we sheltered from the rainstorm that came shortly afterwards

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We were then gestured to come upstairs into the house where a lady was lying on the floorboards moaning and asked if she was sick. I observed that a huge fireplace centred the house and the young girl we saw earlier sat with a baby wrapped around her wondering if it was actually hers. A much older, shorter, fatter man who looked in his 80´s was the head of the house and his son told me he was the shaman of the community and asked me if I wanted to be cleansed by him in a ritual. I agreed and was told all bad spirits and enegy would be exorcised from me and then positive energy put in me. What a once in a lifetime oppurtunity!

The room was dark and he sat me down on a stool, closing my eyes - he started to softly sing and whistle to me shaking 'Shu Panga' leaves (leaves that are noisy) over my head and draping them over me. Amazonian Shamans use these in religous ceremonies to ritually remove bad spirits from a person. I know it sounds weird but I felt like I was being lifted off the ground and things being sucked out of me. After a short while, the Shaman took my head and put his lips to it and started blowing for 10 breaths. It was a pretty unique experience - when I opened my eyes, it was really strange - I never felt better! Before leaving, I attempted to ask questions and managed to find out there were about 10 people in one house which was probably the size of my living and dining room at home - pretty close family! but not much privacy, y'know to do all your 'private stuff' I suppose they were spoilt for space with the countless acres of virgin forest they had surrounding them for a toilet anyhow! The son of the Shaman asked if I wanted to try some medicinal concoctions of a plant that helps stomach aches - I took a sip and wahooooohhh!!! what a stopper!! extremely strong!

I thanked the family and the shaman for his work and we headed back to the shore but not before trying some panning for gold! what most women are busy doing on the river bank. We collected some dirt and a load of small rocks in a large wooden disc and carried it to the river, the process is to add water and appear to swish it around emptying the rocks until you get the dirt - we then tipped the dish with the dirt left and looking closely, we saw we had caught some grains of gold! really cool!. But such a long process that these people do everyday here, but it is gold after all..... We rode back to the lodge down the river with the sunsetting over the River and Amazon and attempted to push the table on the canoe up the stairs! very bizarre

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After my weekend was up, I took the canoe back down the Rio Napo taking in the scenery - I ported back in Misahualli and crossed over the bridge back to the dirt track which was bone dry from the heat of the sun. Armed with my backpack and rubber boots, I trudged down the dirt track aligned with lushious greenery you will ever see and stopped to look at birds and monkey´s high in the tree tops. I was then startled by a jogger passing me with ´Buenas Tardes Señorita!´and carried on running. I was passed many times by cars who wouldn´t give me a ride but thought it would be funny to wave at me speeding away. Reaching the end of the dirt track onto the main road, a house was opposite with 4 dogs who came charging towards me barking angrily ahhhhhh!!!! now I love dogs but wasn´t so keen to hang around and play so I decided to walk back from Misahualli which I calculated would be about an hour - it was great! like a lone walker finding their way home. Pick ups would stop to give me a ride but I decided I was enjoying my walk back too much - you miss so much when you´re speeding by in a car. Along my journey, I encountered a few people and children bidding ´Buenas Tardes´and asking where I was going and replying 'Jatun Sacha' regardless whether or not they knew where it was, but they smiled and nodded anyhow. I walked past many homes that were the same wooden shacks plastered with posters of local political figures holding their thumbs up saying ´Vote for Me!´ It was nice to see a vote for Lisa too for the women (I´d vote for Lisa) - women are second best in South America unfortunetely. Eventually, I reached the school 'Chichaca Rumi' where we planted the Ishpingo Trees so I had a little look to see how they were doing. Actually, a couple of the kids who I recognised from the school were playing marbles in the road and then running out the way when the bus came (They came up asking my name even though they´d seen me before and of course laughing at the response of Sal hehe I thought they´d remember!)

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I noticed passing a sign saying ´Bienvendas Kamakmake´ which unless you were told was an animal centre where the animals just roam around you never would have known what it was. I reached the 'Centro Conservacion Plantas de Amazonica' I knew I was close to Jatun Sacha passing the dead horse with its totally decayed skelton with a few black vultures flying out as I approached. The sun was now setting over the canopy and the clouds were like pink smears across the sky - really pretty! and I even saw some parrots squaking and little black monkeys jabbering in a tree - cute!. The birds nests are really weird here they look like shigra bags hanging from trees.......I did make it back to the reserve by dark, just as well - I had no torch ha! but so pleased with myself that I took the plunge and did this on my own and I truly did end up coping on my own and having an unforgettable experience- what a ride!

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Well the next day, we took the 30 minute walk back to Kamakmake - it was a real plush reserve and the first thing I saw was this cute little Amazon Pig running along with some children who I recognised again from the school dressed in typical Amazonian attire and showing us this cute little monkey that clambered on one of the boys shoulder and held on tight. Totally up for having a monkey on my shoulder, we managed to get him to clamber on me...then he wouldn´t let go. He was tightly clinging on and then even had the decency to pee on me!. Having the novelty of ha monkey on you slowly wearing off. One of the boys got a stick in an attempt to coax him off me which worked but then he clambered back on him again - it was so funny!!! Now that´s monkey business for ya.......

Signing off here at Jatun Sacha

Adios!

Sal.

Posted by SalBolton82 08:48 Archived in Ecuador Tagged trees animals rivers wildlife plants south america amazon ecuador tena medicines Comments (0)

Letters From The Amazon - Part Thirteen

PART THIRTEEN: STRANDED ON TELEFORIQO, MOUNT COTOPAXI AND THE BREAD LADY WITH A CROWN OF STARS

Hola! mi amigos

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The time has come for me to be saying my final 'Adios' to the Jatun Sacha reserve and my adventures here in the rainforest after 6 eventful weeks of living in this utopia of the Amazon (and thank you for still reading them)

It is the month of Christmas and I plan to leave Ecuador within the next few days so I finally spread my wings and forced myself to leave the magic of the rainforest a changed person. Saying a pain stakingly goodbye to my piglet, from the reserve I decided to go to the school again with the other volunteers one last time, but we´d forgotten the teacher had told us the school would be closed that day so of course we were met by an empty classroom. Oh well - nice end to my time in the Amazon. Adam, another volunteer was heading back to Quito also and managed to hail down a bus for us to jump on taking us out of the jungle. Slipping through the pretty cramped bus with our backpacks, I was met by this little voice below me saying ´Buenas Dias´and it was this little boy wearing a Santa Claus hat - how cute! We endured the cramped conditions in the bus to Tena for an hour and once squeezing off it, wandered around the markets buying a shoulder bag and belts all by myself (so proud) until we bought a $6 ticket in the dusty bus terminal from a guy screaming 'Quitoooo!!!!!!' ushering us on to a ´Flota Pelileo´bus. The piece of paper reading 'Quito' on the windscreen was always a comfort to see before I started choking on a piece of chocolate Adam gave me haha!. We headed back to the high altitude of Quito, Ecuadors capital city which lies nearly 3,000 metres above sea level so going from the jungle is pretty tough with the altitude. Anyway, the buses from the Amazon head through the cloud forest (so you literally driving throught the clouds) and the Andean Mountains. It was funny, coz on the bus they actually put on a film that had sound and funny enough it was my childhood hero Indiana Jones in Spanish.

Back in Quito

Back in Quito

I reached back to the Mountains of Quito a very speedy (they drive buses sooooo fast here) 5 hours later after sitting next to lady who openly was breast feeding her baby as it kept kicking me with its little feet. I immediately started having withdrawal symptons of the jungle, surrounded by the chugging buses, dirty streets and cluttered housing, I longed for the peace of mind of the Amazon. Rita had kindly agreed to house Adam and I at her apartment again so we caught a taxi in the late afternoon before it got dark. Heading towards the East of the city to Rita´s apartment I looked behind me and saw we had arrived at the right time as a mammoth storm was chasing us back into the centre and of course the seat belts don´t work......welcome back to Quito. Rita was happy to have me back and welcomed Adam into her home. The first night back in the city, we had a women wrapped up in Andean clothes seating out on the pavement right outside my window wailing and crying and then lying helplessly in the road, it makes me really sad when I can´t do anything about that, she was pretty sad and kept us up most of the night......

The next morning, seeing as I missed out last time - I wanted to go up Teleforiqo, a multi million dollar sky tram that takes passengers on a 2.5 km ride up the flanks of Volcan Pinchincha to the top of Cruz Loma which was the picturesque view that you could behold on top of Rita's balcony. Adam agreed to go with me and we hailed down a $4 taxi to the base of the tram which is really steep! (well it is on the side of a mountain) but people live and work on that incline so I reckon they are pretty fit walking around there everyday. When you actually get into the cable car after a 100 year wait, it takes nearly an hour to reach the top but looking out you can see how stretched out the city of Quito is as it lies in the valley. When you eventually get to the top you´re at 4,100 metres and your breathing gets a little bit tougher but you just have to acclimitize to that altitude, but the view was sooooo cool .....

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but the adventure of it happened coming down........

Well, we got in the cable car which took a century to come around for us to get in to again - Adam and I jumped in with two japanese men and an ecuadorian man who was speaking to them in English who looked like their escort or tour guide or something, sat talking on his blue tooth mobile. At the last moment, an ecuadorian lady came scurrying in to catch the last tram going down - oh how lucky she was. We started to descend and the view of Quito and the bottom drew closer.......we must have been about 20 metres from the end when we heard a strange noise and the momentum of the cable car came to a stop.....

the power had gone.....and we were stuck only 20 metres from the end noooooo!!!!!

The cable car in front of us had just made it off so I guess god wanted us to marvel at the view a little longer of the disembarkment point - at least being stuck at the top you had a nice view. We sat in silence for a while and the Ecuadorian guy sneezed a couple of times and broke the silence by suggesting to the Japanese man sitting in the middle that he knew a really nice Peruvian restaurant that they should go eat at - then the Japanese man translated to the other Japanese man who translated it back with ´No´and then he translated back as ´No´ to the ecuadorian guide - it was so funny to watch!. The ecuadorian lady on the other hand provided us with some musical entertainment by playing this really funny ecuadorian music from her mobile phone to fill the silence.......
After waiting 30 minutes rocking silently in the cable car with still the same view of the disembarkment point just 20 metres away, the power was not coming back on and it was then decided we would have to be rescued via ladder! ha!

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Having been living in the tropic humidity of the Amazon, I decided to get myself on a really good trekking tour up the second highest active volcano in Ecuador near Latacunga - Cotopaxi which means ´Neck of the Moon´ because the moon can be seen just above the peak. Cotopaxi stands at a snowcapped 5,897 metres surrounded by paramo (Andean Grassland that looks like those 80's troll toys). The guide took us to 4,500 metres in a truck up the volcano and kitted out in Andean clothing, we slowly hiked up Cotopaxi - the air was the freshest I have ever breathed in my life! but your breathing becomes a lot harder due to the extreme altitude. The view of the park is a very baron due to the volcanic rock and dirt everwhere (the volcano had been know to erupt in the past) our aim was to hike 300 metres to the refuge base where it starts to get more cold and icy. The strangest thing for me looking across the volcano was to see a group of school children literally crawling up the side, must have been a school trip or really harsh punishment!

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Reaching the refuge base at 4,800 metres, we stopped to eat and throw snowballs off the side until a few of us opted to go up to 5,000 metres to see the glacier (right up to the snowcapped bit) which was AMAZING - I looked up to the peak and could see tiny figures of mountaineers heading to the summit and the active crater at the top. At 5,000 metres you´re pretty much in the clouds so its a crazy experience, its probably the highest I have been on top of the world I´ve ever been - its awesome. Coming back down is a hell of a lot more fun - you pretty much have to slide! how often do you get to slide down a volcano?!?! Reaching the 4,500 mark again, we could feel a storm was a brewing but that didn´t stop the second half of our tour which was to bike down to the lake on mountain bikes! now that was intense! especially when you´re riding down with lightning bolts all around you! Having survived Cotopaxi and proud of myself that I didn't come off my mountain bike over the rough terrain- we drove to a sweet little farmhouse in the Andes called ´PapaGayo´ where they gave us chocolate cake and made the discovery of a hole under a tree where the farm dog lived with all her puppies running out of the hole! awwwww how much of a better day could I have had!

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Adam left to fly back to the USA a few days before me so an Australian guy called Nathan moved in to Rita's spare room so we´ve been out and about around town. There´s this really cool church on a high hill on the north eastern side of the old town in Quito called La Basilica, its really gothic and instead of gargoyles, there are iguanas, reptiles and monkeys on the side of the church. You pay $2 to scale the spiral staircase and over a rickety wooden plank and ladders to the top of the clock towers - pretty cool.

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Nathan and I then decided to head to the south of town to the 'Little Bread Loaf' hill 'Él Panecillo´ which also translates into 'The Bagel' where stands a huge statue of La Virgen de Quito a lady with a crown of stars, eagles wings and a chained dragon looking down over her kingdom of Quito down in the valley. We had to get a taxi up there as its right in the south of the city where the working class are so it isn´t exactly the safest part of town. It´s cool when you get to the top, you can go to the top of the statue for the views across Quito and the mountains - and there were even some some really sweet Llamas up there too munching on the grass :)

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The only problem was getting down........we started to walk a little down the hill back to town when we came across a pack of dogs lying on the side of the road.....we nearly passed them until they got up, started barking angrily and started chasing us back up the hill!!! we were absoulutely petrified! we couldn´t walk down the stairs down the hill after that or even if we did it wasn´t safe due to muggings and hold ups so were practically stuck on the top of the hill with the statue! Well what safer company than the religious statue herself.

Luckily, the statues charm paid off and our guardian angel returned, finally managing to flag down this car with a guy and his little boy riding with him and kindly giving us a ride down back into town phew!!! see not all the people in Quito are bad! Getting back into town we went for a nosy around a crafts market looking for a Panama hat for Nathan which are a very popular style of hat here in Ecuador. The markets are huge and we were caught up in a group of people on their banjos and ladies bringing bread and this soup thing in a cup to all the vendors. One of the ladies actually offered us a cup and muttered something we couldn´t understand so we took the cup and took a sip....it was DISGUSTING..... I don´t know what it was but it tasted like thick nicotene, but being polite we had to smile and be like mmmmmmmmm ha! then quickly dashed away to give it to someone else! haha!

Well, the sun is slowly setting on my time here in Ecuador and I am due to be on a plane soon back to Atlanta for a 12 hour stopover and then homeward bound to London where my new acquired Spanish will seize to exist. It's probably been one of the most challenging things I've ever done in my life which has been unforgettable - will make a great story hey!

So....do you want to buy an acre of the rainforest?

After my experience in the most biodiverse utopia on planet earth, I made a donation to the Jatun Sacha Biological Reserve and bought an acre of the Ecuadorian Rainforest to contribute to the ongoing battle to preserve and protect this most endangered landscape on the planet.

One acre is the same size as 16 tennis courts or one football pitch! - and contains up to 86 different species of tree, with the amphibians, birds, insects and mammals that depend on them.

Here's a number of ways you can do it..

1. rainforest_defender.bmp
With The Rainforest Foundation UK 'Protect An Acre' scheme - you can buy an acre for just £25 to last a lifetime! extras include a certificate, photo card and information about your acre

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With UK based The World Land Trust patroned by Sir David Attenborough you can buy 1/4 acre for £25, 1/2 acre for £50 or a full one acre of £100 in Colombia, Ecuador, Guatemala and Mexico

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Rainforest Concern
is a Registered Charity in the UK where you can buy one acre in Sri Lanka, Panama, Costa Rica and all over South America for £50

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WWF Sky Rainforest Rescue
offers you to sponsor an acre from just £3 a month of buy one for £36.

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Cool Earth lets you buy 1/2 acre in the Ashaninka region of the Peruvian Amazon for £30 and 1/2 acre in the Awacachi Corridor of the Ecuadorean rainforest for £50. You also get an online account where you can view your plot.

6. CI_Logo.jpg
It costs just $15 (12 Euro/£9.50) to purchase and protect an acre with Conservation International to save this threatened habitat and its wildlife from destruction.

Check them out. You'd be amazed what you can do to help.

Now off to soak up my last moments in South America....adios mi amigos....see you again sometime

Mucho Gracias por leer! (Thank You very much for reading)

Sal.

Posted by SalBolton82 05:01 Archived in Ecuador Tagged rainforest rivers statue volcano city cathedral south dogs america amazon help quito cotopaxi ecuador tena acre Comments (0)