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Showing posts from February, 2016

Living in Ecuador: The Good, the Bad and the Annoying

Good Things about Ecuador Rent is super cheap.  If you are paying $450, you are living the high life.  If you're not, you can get small unfurnished apartments for $150-250.  This was my apartment, $90 a month including utilities, shared with 2 other girls. Food is super cheap.  You can live on $10 a day eating out all 3 meals.  Waiters are also full-service, and they don’t expect tips.  (You just have to be a little patient and don’t drink alcohol to stay within that budget.) Almuerzo del dia, or lunch of the day, is the best deal around.  You get a delicious bowl of soup, a meat, rice, a small salad/slaw, and a tiny desert.  All for anywhere between $2-3, depending on the place. When you’re in a restaurant eating, other customers say good morning, afternoon, or evening to you as the come into the restaurant, or simply, “Buenas”.  They also say “Buen provecho” which means enjoy your meal .  I find this nice.  People don’t in general s

Galapagos: Isla San Cristobal

I arrived in San Cristobal at about 9:30 am, on the 7:00 am boat out of Santa Cruz.  Thankfully, the ride wasn't as rough as the Isla Isabella boat ride. Still, it wasn't fun, and it was hot inside the boat. I got to town and, using my map, found my hotel, Pension Suiza. It was a little ways up into a neighborhood but still an easy seven minute walk from town. When I found out there was no A/C, I was a little disheartened, but with a strong fan, it turned out to be fine. There’s a kitchen you can use and a refrigerator, which is very nice for leftovers and beers/sodas bought at the convenience store. After settling in, I went down to the Malecon for lunch, where I had “chicken fajitas” which was a glob of chicken with mayonnaise and a few diced tomatoes wrapped into a cold flour tortilla. It was edible but was $6, plus a $3 iced tea = $9 just for a very basic, boring lunch. After lunch, I took a taxi to Playa Mann, the best beach near town. There are p

Galapagos: Isla Santa Cruz

Las Grietas  The Galapagos islands are  amazing.  It's hard to believe that in the middle of the ocean it can be as hot and humid as it is, what with the ocean breezes and all.  I looked at Accuweather and it was 85 degrees but it sure felt hotter.  The humidity must have been at least 90%. Once I walked 3 blocks to my hotel, checked in, and got to my hotel room, which was up four flights of stairs, I was dripping with sweat.  I was so happy to have AC, I sat there for about half an hour just to cool down.  While resting, I noticed this classy sign: I only stay in the best hotel rooms in my travels.  Lol After cooling down, I went looking for lunch and happy hour and quickly realized how expensive everything is here!  A local beer in a bar is $4.50, a sandwich is $5.99 and a plate of spaghetti, $12.  I know that doesn't sound ridiculous to normal people but after Loja, where lunch costs $2.50 and a 20 oz Pilsner is $1.75 in a restaurant, I was  not  used to this.