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Immersing myself in Ecuador

To sleep or not to sleep!!

ECUADOR | Wednesday, 16 January 2013 | Views [603]

Montanita, Ecuador.  I can never remember which city it is that never sleeps.  New York or Las Vegas?  No matter what, this small town on the coast of Ecuador could put them to shame.  EVERY NIGHT of the week there are people out until after the sun rises having fun doing all kinds of sinful activities.  This is definitely the place to come for anyone who wants a laid back vibe with never-ending partying.  It's also an inexpensive place to indulge in your wilder side.  A whole street off the beach is referred to as Cocktail Alley.  The bars play music so loud you can dance in the street to it while pretending to be able to salsa dance.  I chose to stay outside of town, at "the point" to avoid the late-night volume and noise.  I'm all about having a good time but my most important experience for me here is my Spanish learning.  Although I apparently think I am quite fluent when I've had more than a few cocktails...


My favorite time is my leisurely stroll to school in the morning.  Around 8:00 am there are usually only the scattering of people around.  Those coming home after a long night of festivities or those passed out on the beach after those festivities got the better of them.  Also, people like me, who like to wake up early and enjoy the calm of walking barefooted in the sand with the tide stretched so far out the beach looks a mile wider.  I let the ocean breeze wake me and find a spot to plop and write in my journal or just watch the waves and the crabs that scuttle in and out of there little holes in the sand.  It's peaceful. So relaxing.


By 1:00 pm when I am out of school the walk on the beach is much different.  I play a continuous game of dodge ball from all of the people playing soccer or paddle ball.  The tide can be up almost to the edge of town.  Vendors hawk all different kinds of goods, honking horns and ringing bells and whistling loudly to get your attention.  The beach is flooded with lounge chairs and bright umbrellas.


Town is much different in the daylight.  Even more vendors are selling goods on the street leaving room for one car at a time to pass.  Most people are quietly getting over the night before and enjoying their first meal of the day, either in the cool of a restaurant with wifi or on the street from a food cart.  


Sunblock for us gringos is super important.  Ecuador means Equator.  So close to the sun this girl's white pasty skin can become lobster red and painful in less than an hour.  I slather on the SPF 50 and I've still managed a slight red tinge to my now somewhat more bronzed skin.  Afternoon is usually time for a nice nap, either on the beach or in my room with the fan blowing directly on me.  What a horribly stressful life, huh??


Where I am staying there are two places that I like to go and find people to socialize with that are usually English speaking and up for getting acquainted.  Across the road from my hostel is the Montanita Brewing Company.  They make delicious fish tacos and some of the best sushi rolls I've ever had.  They also have an assortment of alcoholic beverages to choose from and it's location is ideal.  The bar sits directly on the beach and hosts many people on it's cushioned sofas and chairs.  Sunset is perfect to watch from here while enjoying a cold brew.  There is also the Casa de Sol, our neighbor.  This hostel also boasts a small bar where people like to congregate after a day of surfing and such.  Convenient for me!


The original plan to be in Montanita for one week at Mar Azul Spanish School extended into 2 weeks.  I wanted a larger base of knowledge before really traveling by myself.  So far I've been catered to by having a ride from the airport and Gaby setting up my lodging.  On Saturday I am going to head to the town of Banos.  Gaby has connections here to continue my spanish learning and they follow her curriculum.  I'm excited to see more of Ecuador, slightly nervous to leave my new comfort zone,  and hopeful that I will continue to forge my path in life on this awesome adventure!!!  Keep following for more, I'll try to update more often.  


Hope this finds everyone warm, safe, happy and healthy!

Tags: beach, mar azul, montanita, party


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