School y Banos

Hey everyone! I know I haven’t written in awhile but school is quite insane. The last time I wrote was after the weekend I stayed in Quito to go to some museums and try out church with my host family. Well from there, school started on Monday and it has been chaotic ever since. Because I’m taking 203 and 301 here we have to do them separate and not at the same time meaning I have to take a quarter class in four weeks. My midterm is actually this Thursday. So every night is about 5 hours of homework and then some other little things to prepare like studying the verb tense and when to use it. School has been nice though even if fast paced.

This weekend however was pretty crazy. A lot of us students traveled to Banos, a city 4 hours south of Quito and got to do a lot of amazing things. We stayed in a hostel right in the downtown area by a large black church and some markets. I ate wayyyyyyy too many crepes and probably spent a little too much money on gifts and other fun things to do.

Friday- we got on the bus to Banos at 8am and arrived at 11:45ish. As soon as we got there we went and got lunch (crepe #1) and then we went and walked around the city just taking it all in. Then we checked into our hostel at three and went to the Casa de Arbol at 4. Look up this swing, seriously they call it the swing on the edge of the world. After we went on that which took about 3 hours up the mountains then swinging then back down, we went and got dinner and some random place where I got Pesto Spaghetti. We then went back to our hostel and hung out, met our roommates who were from Australia and Missouri, then went to bed fairly early because we had to be up at 7:00.

Saturday- we got up at 7 and got ready for the day and ate some food. We then went horse back riding for two hours which was extremely nerve racking but also fun. My horse’s name was Whiskey. We rode them up into the jungle by beautiful trees and mountains, stopped at a waterfall then carried on back down. Once back into town we got lunch at some little sandwich shop. We then went and got a full body massage for an hour and a facial for just $17. This was the first time I have ever gotten a massage and it was wonderful! Then we went on a tour of the cascades which was on a chiva bus (look it up). We got to go see all the beautiful waterfalls around Banos, had a chance to go across the valley in only a small trolley with ten people, and we could zip line as well. I did not zip line because well the infrastructure did not look too safe and I was scared but hey I can try again when we go to Mindo. The last waterfall we saw was terrifying. It was incredibly large and we had to walk across a rickety old suspension bridge to get close to it. However, it was beautiful and completely green, which is why they call it rio verde. Then we went to dinner and then on a party chiva bus. We took that bus with blaring music and music videos up to the top of a beautiful hill where we could only see the lights of Banos and got to see fire dancers. Then the chiva bus dropped us off at the party strip and we danced for hours.

Sunday- We got up kinda late then went and had breakfast. We then sat in a café and talked for a few hours, went to another café (we needed wifi 🙂 ) and did a little bit of homework. We then ate there were my cucumbers were definitely soured and went to the little artisan shops. Then we boarded the bus and got back to Quito at 9:30 last night. The weekend overall was great other than the fact that I left my money belt with the debit card on the private bus we rented sooo today I’m trying to get that back.

I’m so excited that I am here. It is finally starting to feel like a second home and I cant wait to explore even more on the weekends. This coming weekend I’m staying in Quito to look at some museums and maybe do a little hiking. Until then, Have fun everyone. I hope you’re

all doing well.

Goodbye from Quito!