Greetings from Quito, Ecuador,
On our first official day together in Quito, the group went to the Davis Orphanage and helped paint the school walls. The members understood that their work contributed to a better environment for the people in the orphanage. The experience then became even more meaningful as we ate a delicious lunch with some of the children who lived in the orphanage.
The afternoon continued with the trip members joining hands with the local children as we played sports and games. Rachael’s and Tristan’s natural skills with children shined through as we played fun games, such as “Duck Duck goose” (Pato pato ganso) and “Red Light Green Light” (Luz roja luz verde). Each member formed an important bond with the children. Anna- Karin used and shared her art skills with the children as she was very helpful when teaching them origami. The group felt sad to leave, though the experience will remain with them forever.
That evening we celebrated our completion of the group by going for a yummy local dinner and then singing some Karaoke. Lauren K., Olivia and Andrea sang “Hit Me Baby One More Time.” Casey and Haley sang ”Hotel California”. Jeff and Cody made the group laugh when they sang “Hips Don’t Lie” in Spanish. Jamie and Ryan sang the classic song by The Beatles “Let it Be“, as the rest of the group couldn’t help but join in as we sang so loud that the entire building must have heard us!
After Karaoke we ended the evening playing some pool and ping pong. Carter, Jackie, Tyler, Alex and Peter played a great game of pool making some of us think that they have been playing all their lives!
Yesterday was a day of adventure. The group conquered zip lining and river tubing. We drove on our amazing bus to the Cloud Forest about two hours outside of Quito. “The bus ride was breathtaking and many eyes were glued at the windows marvelling at the majestic view”, described Carter. The zip lining was a first experience for some, such as Meryl who was amazed by the excitement of the activity. We ended the morning with a delicious homemade lunch from the people who owned and lived on the site – the pizza was delicious (Jason especially loved it!) and the salad was made from the fresh vegetables in the garden.
We then drove to a river along the Andes Mountain Range and tubed down the stream. Bebe and Lauren B. laughed their hearts out as we floated down on our tubes which were tied together while the guide brought us through the waterway. The great day ended with a celebration for July 4th as our fantastic Ecuadorian trip guides, Carlos, Rai and Rene brought us to the highest point in Quito to watch fireworks and eat at a beautiful restaurant that overlooked the entire city of Quito. The beauty blew our minds away.
We are now about to leave to visit the halfway point of our planet, Mitad Del Mundo, the equator line. We are all so excited. Then we are off to the largest and oldest market in South America called the “Otavalo Market.” The trip members will be able to experience the culture and purchase some authentic souvenirs. We will then visit a local community and learn about this great culture by cooking lunch with them and sharing a lovely afternoon together!
Until next time,
The Westcoast Blogger