Tuesday, January 1, 2013

mom in ecuador

What is a trip to Ecuador without a trip to the equator?  Yup - not much.  You've got to visit 0.00.00.  And since it is so close to our house, it is even worth the trip.  Plus, you get free bananas.... not the whole bunch, just one or two. 
I would love to tell you what we are looking at here, but I am hard pressed to remember.  It is some tribal burial nasty witch-crafty thing of some variety, I believe.  Not so lovely.  We saw it shortly after they explained how they did head-shrinking and showed some examples.  Again, not so lovely.  While head shrinking is not practiced as much any more, don't think it doesn't happen.  I may have written it two or so years ago, but we met a child in Chuitallo whose mother was killed and they shrank her head.   
My mommy had a fairly easy time of balancing an egg on the nail right on the equator.  She's got some skills, to be sure.  Others had a much more difficult time.
They showed us the look-how-the-water-swirls-down-the-drain-clockwise-on-one-side-of-the-equator-and-counterclockwise-on-the-other-side trick.  I'm still not so convinced it doesn't have more to do with the slope on the ground or some other reason, but whatever...
 At the end of the tour you get a little dance performance of a typical native dance.  It was done by the same guy that I saw smoking a cigarette when we first arrived.  It somehow didn't seem quite as authentic after that!

 Another day Eric and I took mom to old town, or historic Quito.  Plaza Grande, the Presidential Palace and many many cathedrals.  My mom is in this photo - wearing black, close to the light post on the right side.  Plaza Grande is a pretty busy place.

We looked through to the Presidential Palace a little and had to take a picture with one of the guards in the background.  They do stand pretty still but they have nothing on the mounted police in Ottawa.  That isn't even stated out of bias, although I am bias....

The area really is filled with many beautiful old buildings and cathedrals.  They have even greatly improved the patrolling lately - there are a lot of police around, which wasn't the case not so long ago.  Much of it has a European feel, which makes a lot of sense, I suppose.  While it is not a place we choose to visit or hang out at a lot, it is wonderful to be close to it and enjoy the beauty and history when we play tour guide.
And, family and friends, we are willing to play tour guide any time...... (that is a hint!)

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