Latinalicious – The South American Diaries, part one in photos…

The thing about having signed a contract to write a book is that the things you’d normally blog about, you have to keep locked away on a Word document instead (or Scrivener, which is the awesome program I use to write). But I can’t POSSIBLY wait almost eighteen months to tell you how mind-bogglingly brilliant Ecuador is. YES, it’s that long till Latinalicious – The South American Diaries will be published, I could have had two kids by then!!

A  picture speaks a thousand words however, so consider this photo blog a couple of chapters and we’ll fill in the gaps later!

Let’s start with my new friends here, who’ve introduced me to a liver-smacking local drink made of cane sugar called Canelazo –  a hot alcoholic beverage consumed in the Andean highlands of Ecuador, or in our case, a bar in Quito in the funky area of La Ronda. I’m not telling you the names of my new friends here but suffice to say we have had some fun times and they’re very nice people (ahem).

Next up I should mention the Galapagos, which should probably come top of the list but it’s not as recent as “the Canelazo night with my two new friends”. Ah the Galapagos, where the animals have no fear…

…and groups of bird-watchers with cameras the size of the Hubble telescope follow you through a volcanic Jurassic Park so staggeringly beautiful you think you’ve been lifted off Earth and placed in another galaxy. I’m going back next week to dive and do a fun cruise with Gecko Adventures so I’ll write more then, but see more photos here!

Of course, we can’t forget our trip to Mitad del Mundo, the middle of the world. Here Farzana (who’s now left me, boo hoo) and I got to do some silly experiments like balancing an egg on a plastic point and seeing if the water really does spin in opposite directions on different sides of the equator. SPOILER ALERT: It does.

After that, we made a stop at a nice crater that had a village in it, called Pululagua Crater. We stood there for a while and looked at it. Then left. It probably won’t make the book.

We also visited Quito’s H&M. Farzana couldn’t choose which llama fabric item to purchase so she bought all of these.

Back in Quito’s gorgeous historic centire, we checked out the impressive Basilica del Voto Nacional.

This is unfinished, because local legend says that as soon as it’s completed, the end of the world will occur (I’m scared). We also wandered the streets around Plaza San Francisco trying to avoid roasted guinea pig… which I think I’ll try one of these days. But maybe not today. I actually don’t like to think about eating animals now that I’ve seen things like this in the Galapagos:

But then, I haven’t been to Argentina and caught a whiff of the steak yet.

I could probably go on but it’s late and I have more Canelazo to drink. Tomorrow I’m going on a day trip with a bunch of randoms to  Quilotoa – a water-filled caldera and the most western volcano in the Ecuadorian Andes. There’s a bike ride involved – downhill naturally – and today I bought new trainers from North Face in preparation for all these “activities”. Check em out. I’m wearing them because sadly they are probably the most expensive shoes I’ve ever bought and I feel as though I should. I’m like… so fucking intrepid right now. They’re waterproof too, don’t you know. BRING IT ON AMAZON!

And that’s it for now. At least five thousand word’s worth in photos I’m sure. The book will be better, I promise. I haven’t even told you about the traffic light rum based event with the man from Israel yet…

Byeeeeee x