Bańos. Translated from Spanish to English, means, toilet. There is so much dog shit in the streets, the dogs certainly consider it a toilet…
Bańos has many thermal springs, zip lining, rafting, waterfalls and a giant swing on a hill (for ppl to take their perfect insta photo tbh). Team Ecuador (the new name for Dave, Naomi, Clémence and I), catch a bus to a local waterfall. It’s impressive, yet filled with tourists, so not overly thrilled by that aspect.
Happy hour time. The bartender assembling my mojitos is sporting a pony tail to rival my own (bet he doesn’t have as many split ends as me tho… in desperate need of a haircut).
Day 2 in Banos, Clémence and I hike a trail up to the giant swing (humid, steep, a bit slippery = FUN). Clémence later broke the news that we may have taken the longer, harder trail… seems to be the one I usually take 🤷🏽♀️
Token picture of me on the bańo, in Bańos, it’s time to bus the eff out and head to Cuenca.
Cuenca is cute (some nice street art), yet for one of the largest cities in Ecuador, it really lacks easy access fun pharmaceuticals and the malls are horse shit. I’ve hiked in my runners for 2.5 months and they are falling apart. Was hoping to replace them, yet finding basic brands like Asics is an arduous task. Hoping Colombia will have better pharmas markets and the prices will be gentler on the poor bank account.
I extend the Cuenca trip by a day to visit Cajas National Park… Clémence and I miss a bus stop at the entrance of the park. In near freezing conditions, we begin walking along the highway, attempting to hitch hike. There’s so much low lying cloud, I can barely see 50 meters ahead. Note the stats for successful hitch hiking were much lower than expected. One in twenty five cars, trucks or buses will pick up a couple of foreign señoritas (4 in 100 according the mathametician Naomi 🙄). The first thing the two guys who saved us from the cold said was, “what are you girls doing?”. Lol, I’ve been asking myself that question A LOT, for a long time, and am yet to find an answer. In better weather and more temperature appropriate clothes, Cajas would’ve been a fruitful mission.
I left Clémence to do some hiking. It was too damn cold to stay, para mi… Got back to Cuenca via hitch hiking (again) with 2 Canadian chicas. They are going to Montanita soon, so I think I’ll see them again.
2 day’s in Cuenca too many… One redeeming factor for Cuenca is a local Mexican Restaurant, El Santo, serving cheap to reasonably priced eats and 2 Margaritas for $5USD. Clémence and I ate there 2 nights in a row! I’ll miss that Mexican place.