Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Boat or Land?

Saraguro Hat

Rebecca arrived safely and is comfortably esconced in Maya's bedroom, while Maya appeared to sleep well on the floor, and seems undisturbed by all the comings and goings in the household. Deborah moved half a block away and will have to wait another day for Werner, who missed his flight from Atlanta to Quito. Eric was preoccupied with his lecture he was to give at Catolica in the afternoon, but we all met at Boncaffe for espresso this morning to coordinate our day. Deborah and Rebecca have met before but do not know each other well, but I have known each of them for many many years, and Eric has known them for as long as he has known me.

It was salsa day, so Rebecca came to participate with Eric and I. She had remarkably good rhythm, so perhaps we can all go out and salsa together one night! Werner was to have a lesson with Deborah tomorrow, but we are not sure when he will arrive, so I will suggest that Rebecca take the hour instead.

Our goal for the day was to make our final decision for Galapagos. I had put together a good itinerary for a land tour, albeit a most economical one, more for young students than the aged women that we are. It is an adventure tour, with lots of snorkeling, horsebackriding and trekking. The price is far better than any suitable boat tour. During our visit to 'Ecomontes' travel agency, where we were taken care of by Chuck, a heavy metal musician from California, who has lived in Ecuador for seven years and focuses most of his energy on his musical career. Unfortunately, or perhaps not, he told us about an amazing deal on the Isabela II, which has a great itinerary and is a large boat, so less likely to cause seasickness. The only dates available were over Semana Santa, so Rebecca decided that if she could change her return flight, she would stay for the trip. Once home, she talked to her husband who reminded her that she was having the whole family over for Easter dinner, and staying an extra week was not an option, so we had to nix that choice. We then spent an inordinate amount of time considering another boat with an excellent last minute deal. It was a 16 passenger yacht, and perhaps not great re seasickness, but looked fun and easy and affordable.

I was hoping Rebecca would make the choice, since it is her first time traveling to the Galapagos. I want her trip to be absolutely amazing, the experience of a lifetime, the best adventure possible, and I am fearful that the land trip won't quite meet those expectations, or that the boat trip will be uncomfortable. If it was just me making the decision, it would be easy.

So we must make our decision by tomorrow morning. There will no longer be choices after that.

Corpus Christi Dance

Rebecca was tired after her long flight, and perhaps felt some discomfort due to the altitude. For the first time in months, the sky was grey and overcast and a few droplets of rain fell. I suggested we go to Jacchigua, the folkloric dance performance at the Casa de la Cultura, for the evening. Mel had driven down from Yanayacu with Eric and joined us for our evening of dance and costumes and culture. I remain delighted with the colours and the music and the traditions of the performance. Jaccigua is a wonderful introduction to Ecuador, and introduces the audience to dances from different ethnic groups. I am finally starting to recognize the costumes and their origins, and I was able to understand the introduction to each of the dances.

Saraguro Hat

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