Saturday, December 5, 2009

Party Heats Up

Skydivers at La Carolina

Woodcarved Painting of Quito

There were too many choices today. The city is heating up. Each barrio of the city erected a stage and closed off a street or a square and put on a show, which will go on through the night. Avenue de Los Shyris, just a street over from our house, started setting up early in the day, and the music started in the afternoon, attracting more and more people, and by evening, the street was packed with kisosks selling cotton candy, candied apples, donuts, whole pigs, sausage, llapingachos, beer, canelazo, wine for $1.50 for two litres, too many possibilities. There were game booths and a sort of roulette game and blown up slides for children. The music near our house was Ecuadorian pop, loud, raucous, and the crowd loved it.

Earlier in the day, we could choose to go the local soccer final between Quito and Cuenca at Atahualpa Stadium down the road from our house. Fans started to gather early, and I thought the game was to start at noon, but Ecuadorian fans like to start celebrating hours before the event, and the actual start time was 3:30. We did not go to the game, and later we ran into excited fans after Quito won the championship.

Getting Ready for the Soccer Match

Selling Quito and Cuenca Jerseys

Chiva Sighting

My taxiste Thursday promised me that the bullfight today would be the best. I complained that the bulls were simply not very good that day, so that however skilled the matadors were, they were unable to show off their abilities. He reassured me that if I went today, I would be impressed. But Eric was not keen on the bullfight, so we skipped the bullfight for today.

Maya had a playdate with a friend, so Eric and I wandered through Parque La Carolina, watching hang gliders fly off Rucu Pichincha and land in the park. We were inspired by the many athletes playing soccer, 'Ecuavolley', basketball, frisbee, and we bought a basketball for ourselves.

Chiva Again

Young Chiva Driver

Half of Quito is on a Chiva

We took the Ecovia to the Centro Historico, and wandered around, listening to bands on chivas, and found ourselves at a folkloric dance performance at Teatro Sucre. It was an 'invitation only' affair, but we got in the back door and got seats high up in the theatre, so we had a view from far above.

Teatro Sucre

Andean Music

Maypole Dance

Folkloric Dance

Chagras, Ecuadorian Cowboys

Movement and Dancing

We returned to our barrio for the evening entertainment. Shyris was packed with spectators, eating, dancing, singing along to the music. The night promised to get more and more exciting as the last day of the festival nears. Fireworks too!!!

Party for Children

Big Hotdogs

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