Friday, October 6, 2017
8:06am…my family is still sleeping. I am drinking my morning cup o’ joe, listening to the hustle and bustle outside….beeps, honks, whistles, truck engines working hard in the stop and start traffic to make it along the hills. I look around this quaint apartment, and it could easily be a nice, up-to-date apartment back home in Canada….save a few differences, like no recycling (which absolutely kills me…ugh). However, it takes only a slight shift of attention towards the outside world to be reminded that I ain’t in Kansas no more. Such juxtaposition. This safe, little pocket inside the apartment makes me both appreciate in many ways, yet also resent globalization. I’d say that captures my own internal struggles with travel, which I’m sure I share with many others. It is the idea that I want to explore, learn and be immersed in new and foreign cultures, yet my mere presence highlights the inevitability of globalization in many ways, and although I do want the new and different, there is something to be said for a taste of familiarity….….and on and on and on. ~deep sigh*
Yesterday we headed to the more historic area of Quito – which was fabulous. Of course it also meant more tourists, which inescapably meant more locals trying to make a dollar or two through selling almost anything; as well as a number of old and/or sadly ill and resultantly disfigured folks begging for money. It was a heavy and uncomfortable sight for the kids to experience. At one point we had stopped to check our whereabouts, and a lovely, older man approached us asking if we were American or Canadian. From there, he let us know he lived in Vancouver for 25 years as a teacher and then insisted we needed a tour guide to take us around. Upon politely refusing that, he then insisted Myles needed a hat. Hmmmm….interesting shift. 😉 He asked about the Galapogos, and yes – we are planning to go….but that is not something we advertise to these people as it targets us as having money. Myles said, “No,”, and then Jasper piped up, “Yes we are dad!!!!” It was a good lesson.
We ate lunch at Caféteria Modelo, hoping for a little traditional Ecuadorian food. It was recommended as one of Quito’s oldest café’s, opening in 1950. It was a delightful experience, and yummy….we had empanadas, humitas, and….wait for it… the kids had a Frappuccino. See above for my feelings on this.
We are in constant experimentation with balance….sleeping, eating, physical activity, sightseeing, homework, eating out, eating in, et cetera, et cetera. Today is likely going to be a day of low-key activities, and perhaps tomorrow we will head to one of the many beautiful hikes around Quito.