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Quito Catchup: Why Now?

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It may seem paradoxical that my first opportunity to sit down and catch up on blogging the North American roadtrip is on my first full day overseas, but there are a few good reasons for it:

 

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This post brought to you courtesy of the Wifi at the Quito "Speed & Grill"

(1) The amount of time we have in each foreign locale is much greater than in any of our North American stops. We'll be in Ecuador for over three weeks, mostly in Quito and the Galapagos Islands, though we also appreciate suggestions on other places particularly worth seeing and reachable by bus or train. In contrast, the longest stretches in one place that we had in the U.S. since my last post were probably the four days we spent in my hometown with my parents, and the four days we spent in Houston with my older sister.

(2) The number of things we need to do has suddenly declined. Both of those Texas stops carried social obligations as well as the necessity of accomplishing either one major task (obtaining our scuba certification), or many minor ones (sorting the requirements for an Indian visa, going to the bank, etc.), in preparation for the Round-The-World trip. Now that we're as prepared as we'll ever be able to get, we find that we have time to sit around in kitschy NASCAR-themed restaurants, drinking cervezas and catching up on everything that we were too frantic for back in the U.S.

(3) Living is suddenly slower and cheaper. We're not driving ourselves anywhere -- and one's energy to do more than veg out in front of HBO rises dramatically when 6-8 hours in a minivan has been wiped off the daily schedule. Hotels don't care whether we actually check out at noon. The employees of the aforementioned restaurant, otherwise empty on a Saturday afternoon, feel no apparent inclination either to hurry us out of the restaurant nor to press more food/drink on us. And finding where to stay and how to get around loses some of its pressure when everything is half the price it would be in the U.S.

So it looks like, WiFi access permitting, you may be getting more frequent posts from me on the other side of the equator than I ever managed back home.

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