Thursday, August 01, 2013

Ecuador (Part 1)

We're back from Ecuador.  Thankfully.  It was a really great trip but we're so glad to be home.  The trip started out ok.  The kids seemed tired right from the get-go so that was a little strange.  Our first flight didn't leave until 11:45 in the morning so we weren't sure what was going on.

The first flight was fine.  We got to Bogota, Columbia.  We barely had enough time to go to the bathroom and board the plane.  Let's also just mention that they have some funky systems at that airport.  Both going and returning through Bogota, we boarded in a hallway and stairwell with passengers for another flight.  So there was a fair amount of confusion.  They you had to make sure you got on the right bus/tram to get on the correct plane.  What?  Who thought this was a good idea?  It happened both times.  Strange.  Very strange.  And not very efficient.
Leah on the ride from the airport to the hotel
We had 2 flights though.  And the 2nd flight was when it started to get a little rough.  Apparently there is a lot of wind in Quito.  We circled Quito for a while in turbulence.  Both Bart and I were not doing well.  The first problem was that we tried to eat whatever the kids didn't eat of their airplane food.  Well had we known we were going to be jostled around for who knows how long, we probably would've not done that.  But we did.  I threw up.  A lot.  Bart just felt really sick but managed to hold it down.
Quito from our hotel window

So we were feeling pretty rough by the time the plane landed.  I did feel better however when we were leaving the plane and Bart pointed out someone's vomit down the side of the wall and all over the floor.   Yup, you read that right.  Apparently someone else was losing it also but instead of finding a bag they decided to puke down the wall.  Seems right, right?  Gross.  So I knew at that point that I wasn't just some sensitive crazy person (I mean, the fact that Bart wasn't doing so hot either helped too).  But that's just disturbing.  There's a part of me that had wished I had taken a picture, but would I really want a picture of that?

Ok, so we're holding it together.  Praise the Lord the kids were doing fine and not feeling sick.  Seriously, praise the Lord.  We come out after getting our bag and we're just really looking forward to getting to the hotel to rest.  Albeit we're not looking forward to the 1.5-2 hour drive to the hotel, but it's a necessary evil.  By the way, as I a side note, we had no idea the hotel was soooo far away from the airport when we booked it.  Whoops!
A glimpse of something better to come.  We arrived when it was dark
so it was hard to tell what we would see in the daylight from our bed.
But no one was there to pick us up.  Wait, I know I emailed them (the hotel) multiple times about arranging transportation from the airport.  They had just confirmed a couple of days before that they would pick us up.  Great.  No one.  So we wait a while.  Finally we go to the taxi counter.  They haven't even heard of the hotel.  No clue.  They send us to the information desk.  Luckily they just let us use the phone and luckily we had the number of the hotel and were able to call.  The dude was on his way.  There were traffic issues.  And to his credit, it was legitimate stuff.  There was a rock slide onto one of the main roads that got him to the airport.

So the guy picks us up.  At that point, we had been waiting for around an hour.  We're tired.  And not feeling great.  But we're making progress.  Little did we know the trip would end up being 2 hours with a lot of winding mountain roads with stop and go traffic at times, so add more nauseousness to the trip.  Leah was able to sleep a bit, but the ride was hard for the kids overall.  Just really long.  By the time we got to the hotel, it was well past 7:30 and we were all tired and hungry.
More pictures to come....

Stay tuned for part 2 of the trip.  It really does get better....

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