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We Are Flying Solo

September 5, 2010

I Am In A Parallel Universe

And in said universe, I am typing on a Spanish keyboard, so forgive me in advance for strange characters & typos, should they appear.

At present, I am sitting in an exquisite 300 year old Spanish colonial hacienda that sprawls in acres of long, low stucco through breathtaking gardens of bouganvillea, datura, & spanish moss.  Deep blue doors are locked with keys that look as if they would unlock someone´s dungeon.  Century-old art & furniture that smells of history surprise us around every corner.  I am sure the porters go off to giggle every time I walk into our bedroom & go Holy crap!

This does NOT bear any resemblance to my actual life, so I have obviously been sucked into someone else´s.

I can´t possibly encapsulate even the last two days here, so I will stick with summary:

Everywhere we go, we are ringed with green volcanos sheathed in clouds at their summits.  The indigenous people trudge at the roadsides with the long braids & swaying skirts catching the air as they carry huge bundles or haul reluctant pigs to market.

And the horses (because that´s what we all really care about, right?) -- mine is a little dark bay Criollo with some Spanish blood thown in and with his little fuzzy ears, he reminds me very much of riding lifeshighway´s horse, Pete.  I am still trying to reliably remember the little booger´s name, but I think it is Capuli (you put emphasis on every syllable of names in Ecuador). 

He is only five, so he is still learning the ropes, but he has a good mind & a sweet face that I can´t resist petting.  He is best friends with our guide´s horse, Tostado, who is a striking bay roan Appaloosa/Criollo/Columbian horse, & as a result, I am constantly reminding Capuli that he is not to stick his nose right under Tostado´s tail.

We are off today for about a six hour ride traversing the side of a volcano (Imbabura) to reach our next hacienda.  If it is as mind-blowingly incredible as this one, I may simply pass out from sheer sensory overload.

If there is more free (although shudderingly slow) internet, perhaps I will be able to share more later in the week!  For now, I must go fill many water bottles & stock snacks into my packs so I can keep the blood sugar up all day!


  1. Pictures! I demand pictures of the cute fuzzy pony, and also of the opulence!

  2. Isn't traveling the BEST?! It sounds like you're having quite the adventure already. (Oh, and I totally feel ya on the keyboard thing -- when I did a semester abroad, I had the hardest time writing simple e-mails and never did figure out how to make a question mark. Lol. Ah, well, a small price to pay for getting out and seeing the world!) Have fun, and try not to get bitten by some kind of creepy Ecuadorian arthropod cuz I'm sure there are lots! And, of course, take lots of pics!

  3. Nearly passing out from jealousy. If at all possible, lots and lots of photos please.

  4. sounds incredible---we travel a lot, but have never done a riding trip out of the country yet.

    Ecuador is gorgeous, huh?

  5. Ohhh, I am so jealous. I am waiting on the edge of my seat for pictures.