Canada Day was yesterday, but we decided to celebrate it today. Emilie, Sam, Maya and I did not get moving too early in the morning and were delayed at Boncaffee while we watched Brasil lose to Holland at the World Cup (can't beleive Brasil is out -- they were supposed to win!). By the time we got on the Ecovia to go downtown, it was too late to give Emily and Sam a proper tour of the old town. We got off at La Marin and walked to the Plaza Grande. I suggested they visit La Compania (the gold church) and San Fransisco church and museum, as well as Casa Alabada, and have lunch at the Archbishop's Palace at Hasta La Vuelta Señor.
Then Maya and I made a mad dash to find a taxi, which then took forever to get to Cyrano's near the apartment to buy a cake for the celebration, change clothes hastily, and meet the ambassador's car next door for a ride to Cumbaya. Maria was hosting the event at her house for a small group of Canadian women and we all indulged in bagels and cream cheese and smoked salmon and good company.
I am not sure it felt like Canada Day, not only because it was a day late. If not for this event, I would have forgotten to celebrate. We had picked up Margaret, the Ambassador's wife at the American Ambassador's residence, where over a thousand people had been invited to celebrate the Fourth of July two days early. I guess the date of the celebration does not matter, it is the (thought?) feasting that counts. In the Ecuadorian media, Canada Day and Fourth of July hardly merit a word, and are certainly not mentioned or important for anyone but those celebrating.
It is always wonderful to get together with the Canadian women and Canada Day was just an excuse. This was to be my last event with this group of women who have be incredibly supportive and entertaining and interesting and reassuring. I will miss them and our meetings and celebrations and hope that I will see them all again.
Emilie and Sam are off to the north for a few days. Maya and I will join Maria and Gabriel for a weekend at the beach near Pedernales. I am not expecting sun, so I will not be disappointed if it rains and am bringing warm clothes and rainjackets just in case. I am trying to make up for our anticipated missed vacation at the beach in Florida (where we were disinvited!), but so far we have not quite made it to a proper 'fun in the sun' break.Sam and Emilie off to Otavalo