Sunday, November 27, 2011

and we are thankful....except....

We did end up going away - for one night - but it was a good one.  We headed to Mindo - a cloud forest area about 2 hours away - with our friends the Jensens.
At first I was a little unhappy.  We had a price quote that was pretty decent (prices here are increasing like crazy) but when we got there they said it was for different housing or something like that - some sad excuse for basically (my interpretation) going "Ah, they are gringos so we will charge more.  I don't mind spending money for something worthwhile, but I don't like being swindled!
Especially for a place that stank like crazy and was filled with dead bugs (conclusion - they probably sprayed for bugs to "clean" our room, only to not actually clean the dead bugs.... the room was littered with them).  Thankfully I realized that I needed to change my attitude... especially it being Thanksgiving and all.
We had amazing weather the day we got there - apparently it can be cloudy a lot.  AND we pretty much had the place to ourselves.  That was fabulous.

After an afternoon of swimming, we headed in to get ready for dinner.   I'm not sure what exactly was in the pool water but I had a crazy time trying to comb the girls' hair.  Eric made an attempt at Lucy while I did Mia and then helped out Maddy.  He gave up and I took over.  There is something about that girl's hair that makes it super hard to comb, but it was worse than ever.  I finally just separated the stuff into sections and braided it, knots and all.
Pippi looks mighty cute (a little psycho-scary in this picture!) but her hair really did stay like that!!  Perhaps they filled the pool with hair gel?
We heard that there was a great pizza restaurant in town with a wood fire oven.  We found it (town is small, but has 5 or 6 pizza restaurants).  And it was pretty tasty.

After putting some completely exhausted (completely, let me emphasize) three 10 and unders to bed, the 11 and olders and moms watched Monty Python's Quest for the Holy Grail.  It had been many many years since I had seen it, but it was just as good as always.  And now Maddy is quoting like a crazy person......
Day two - more sun, more swimming.

Up until about 10:00 or so, we were still pretty much alone at this place.  Then 2 tour busses arrived and we were bombarded.  They were all Ecuadorian, so I'm not sure what the deal was.  We still pretty much had the pools to ourselves (apparently there aren't many swimmers?) but the deck area was packed.  I enjoyed embarrassing the kids with my grooving to the music (no, I didn't not stand up, I wasn't that mean).
We packed it up and headed out, then did a restaurant repeat for lunch.  Hey, if you know it is good, sometimes it is not worth the risk in some places!  A little "Adventures in Odyssey" in the car and two hours later we arrived in a very cool, rainy Quito.  It made us even more happy that we got some wonderful sun and surf (okay, surf - no, but you get the idea).
It was a great way to spend part of our Thanksgiving break.  But really, doing anything with great friends makes for a good time.
One downside.  Notice what Eric is doing in this picture:
Scratching.  We got a lot of bug bites.
Seriously.  Lots and lots of bug bites.

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