Sunday, April 10: Fly to Quito

Deserted streets
At 7:00 am this morning the normally busy Calle Larga is largely deserted. It rained fairly heavily overnight. The rain has stopped for now but the sky is still overcast and threatening.

The recent rains have swollen the Rio Tomebamba at the foot of the stairs beside our hostel. The current is very strong. I don’t think that I’d want to try white water rafting down the river these days!

Rio Tomebamba when we came
Rio Tomebamba when we came
Rio Tomebamba this morning
Rio Tomebamba this morning

Vendors' booths still set up
The vendors still have their booths set up along the street and in the park so it appears as though the party will continue today and possibly tomorrow. However, the rain tarps have been lowered to protect the merchandise.
Only one food vendor

There was only one food vendor left and he was serving breakfast to the men who were providing security to the site.

After breakfast we finished up our packing and I took a few photos of the hostel to give you a feeling for what it was like.

Front of the Hostel
Front of the Hostel
Fridge & food storage
Fridge & food storage
Kitchen sink & stove
Kitchen sink & stove
Kitchen counter & storage
Kitchen counter & storage
Eating area
Eating area
Lounge/TV area

Lounge/TV area

Action in the park
When I stepped out on the “beach” balcony, it was obvious that action was heating up in the park so we decided to head down and take a look. The artists were puting up their artwork and many new vendors were displaying their wares. It seems that today would be even a larger party.

Artificial flowers
Artificial flowers
Paper flowers
Paper flowers
Seed pods form petals
Seed pods form petals
Nancy examines blanket
Nancy examines blanket
Help daddy layout bracelets
Help daddy layout bracelets
New artwork
New artwork
Kids' fish pond
Kids’ fish pond
Medieval art
Medieval art
Food vendor sets up
Food vendor sets up

Suitcases on the curb
Well, the time has come. Here’s Nancy and Andy with out luggage on the curb. I’ve gone across the street to hand in our keys to our landlady’s daughter. Then things happened quickly. We said our goodbyes to Andy, he hailed a cab to take us to the airport, we loaded in our luggage and happed in. Just as we were taking off in the cab, Esperanza realized we were leaving and rushed out to wave goodbye.

Saying goodbye to Andy
Saying goodbye to Andy
Our cab arrives
Our cab arrives
Esperanza waves goodbye
Esperanza waves goodbye

Before long we’re at the airport, checked-in, and on-board our short flight to Quito.

Airbus 318
Airbus 318 to Quito
Last look at Cuenca
Last look at Cuenca

Street performer
When we arrived in Quito we hopped in a cab to the Quito Hotel. After half a block our taxi driver discovered he had a flat tire. So we shifted to another cab to compete our journey to the Quito Hotel. At one of the stoplights we were “entertained” by a young man juggling three large balls. When the light turned green he tried to collect tips from drivers.

The Quito Hotel is quite interesting architecturally. The entrance way and lobby are quite impressive.

Qhito Hotel exterior
Qhito Hotel exterior
Entrance and lobby
Entrance and lobby

Our room is quite nice but nothing out of the ordinary. It took a couple of calls to the front desk to get a chair so I could sit comfortably at the desk. It certainly is nice to have hat running water in the basin for shaving and washing your hands.

Nice soft beds
Nice soft beds
Nice bathroom
Nice bathroom
Desk & wi-fi
Desk & wi-fi

We had supper at Hunters’ across the street from the hotel. Good food but much more expensive than we have been paying in Cuenca.

Hunters' Restaurant
Hunters’ Restaurant
Our friendly waiter
Our friendly waiter

When we looked around the lobby we couldn’t find any other members of the Gate 1 group. However, we did see this schedule of events for tomorrow.
Gate 1 Schedule