This little story details my travels from
back to the Cuenca area for 2 weeks. Purpose of trip? Retrieving my baby girl Gracie (dog in case you don’t know it) to bring back to Seattle , and for my Mommy’s 80th birthday….not necessarily in that order. Cuenca
First, I needed to arrange a taxi to the airport in CUE, but almost of them are too small to fit the dog kennel in. My friend Wilson, a taxi driver, arranged for his uncle to take me in his station wagon.
LUCKILY, late on the night before, I happened to check my flight information on LAN’s website. The flight WAS due to depart at , therefore I arranged for the taxi to pick me up at . I was shocked to see the flight had been bumped up an hour to . They never notified me. At the last minute I had to scramble to bump up my taxi pickup, too, but
’s uncle doesn’t have a cell phone, so he was hard to reach. Wilson was able to call someone with a cell phone that worked next to his uncle’s and relayed the message to him. Interesting that my flight ORIGINALLY was to leave at , then changed to , then changed to ….none of which was I automatically notified by email. I wonder how many other people didn’t know of the change? Because, the flight maybe only had maybe 50 people on it. Wilson
A 35-minute bumpy flight later on a 737 and I was in
. Quito (kee toh) is Quito ’s capital and has over a million in population, right? Well, it’s airport is also tiny…only a few gates and only TWO baggage claim belts!!! Minutes later I had my bags and headed out the door to my pre-arranged waiting van. A $10, 20 minute ride thru Ecuador up, and down, and over, and around I arrived at my hostal ‘ Quito ’. SG is a squashed into a hillside, a very skinny but tall property. A sign as you enter the front door informs you the reception desk is on the 5th floor outdoor deck, plop your luggage down and ‘come on up’. UP INDEED!!! Straight up very tightly winding narrow stairs. I mean, remember, Quito is already at 9,000 ft and by the time you get to the rooftop deck you feel as though you've arrived at 10,000 ft, and you dread the idea of dragging your heavy luggage up any of those stairs. Luckily, they gave me a room on the first level ($26). Secret Gardens
The rooftop deck is definitely the place to hang out…where I’m writing this from. I’m looking out across an amazing topography.
is a city built at the foot of a huge volcano. The city is comprised of hills and valleys and more hills and valleys. It makes Quito look wimpy. The neighborhoods and city in general sweep right up the sides of the hills and down the others. What is amazing is the neighborhoods that go up, up, up the slopes of what is at least a 1,000 ft hill as if it was creeping up past your ankles and headed for your knees. Too bad my pictures can do justice as the 3 dimensional aspect of it is lost. On one tall knoll (double the height of Queen Anne in San Francisco ) is a huge statue, an angel with wings overlooking the city. Seattle
I will have to come back to
to explore it later. After all, it only cost $50 to fly here. So far, this is my second time here and seen none of it as it has only been a stopover to a next-day flight. Speaking of which, mine leaves at 6:15 am, so I’m gonna have to get up at 3:30 and pull myself together for all day travel tomorrow (Miami – Chicago – Seattle). Quito
|Cuenca airport passenger waiting area...that's all of it.|
|Cuenca Airport Terminal....massive ain't it?|
|Quito - Angel statue on top of large hill (as viewed from my hostal)|
|View from rooftop deck of my hostal|
|Cool figurines on the rooftop deck of my hostal|