A Travellerspoint blog

Wrapping it up.... Ecuador that is.

Ecuador is an enchanting land. Varied in landscape and terrain, you can find anything here. It has beaches and mountains, markets and malls, and everything in between. I have spent a majority of my time in the highlands region (center of the country), but teetering on the oriente (Amazon rainforest) at times.

It was here where I experienced many firsts:

- First time in South America bitches!!!
- First time I went to a cockfight
- First time I did laundry on the trip (three weeks)
- First time I got sick on the trip (hopefully the last)
- First time I was on land above 4,000 meters (12,000 feet)
- First time I had a drink that combined beer with raw eggs (since cocktail Ive always wanted to have a red eye!)
- First time I saw any animal being sacrificed
- First time I was told to throw dirty toilet paper in any place other than the toilet
- (most importantly) First time I broke the $5 barrier at a hostel.
etc, etc

This place is cheap. Like really effin cheap. For a meal you get Almuerzos which is like a fixed menu. For two bucks or less you get soup, chicken, rice, beans, salad, a coke, and sometimes a cookie. I went white water rafting (more on this later) for 30 bucks for the day. Gas is $1.50, and Hostels are between $4 and $8 a night (some including breakfast!). The possibilities are endless!

They aslo have really poor water pressure here, so you cant flush toilet paper which is such a foreign idea to me... Females may understand, but I was not about to go down, but eventually I had to give in.
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With this website I have a limit to how much photos I can upload, and I couldnt make all the ones I wanted to put up from Otavalo, so here are some that didnt make it into the last post:

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Since I left you last I was sick. I didnt do a whole lot since then. I have unfortunately spent a majority of my time in Ecuador in Quito recovering from that stomach infection. When there I went to this thing called Teleferiqo which is a big ass gondola that takes you to the top of the volcano that is on the outskirts of the city. Good views. Somebody got robbed up there hours before by a guy with a machete and revolver. Good timing. Then went to the Mitad Del Mundo. I need to dedicate a few paragraphs to that place.

The Mitad Del Mundo means quite literally the middle of the world. It gets that name because it is the place where the equator passes through (they consider the equator so important, they named the country after it. I took the .25 cent bus an hour north of Quito to the area, and went to the real one. The ¨real one¨is a large monument that is about 125 feet tall and 40 feet around that has submonuments for the four cardinal directions. Its in this place that costs $2 to get in (a ripoff if you ask me), and is just there. Fortunately for technical advances and the computer age 12 years ago, with the advent of the computer age, the ¨real¨equator was found to be approximately 600 meters off course from the monument thereby creating the ¨fake¨Mitad Del Mundo.

I went to the real one, had a guy take my picture and left. I talked to that guy, and he was cool so I asked if he wanted to go to the fake one. He had an elaborate story that condensed to the fact that he bought a bicycle in the south of Peru, and bicycled through Bolivia into Ecuador, and on that day to the Mitad Del Mundo. On the way there his money fell out of his pocket, and he sold a red bull to get into the real Mitad. Awesome! So I paid for him to get into the fake one and he was sooooo happy. He was going to have to sell his cigarettes otherwise. At the fake one which is $3 and worth every penny you go through and they do all these funny experiments, and show you about Ecuadorian culture. They show an Anaconda hide, a shrunken head, Cuy (not that interesting), and a hut from 1835. The experiments culminate in the balancing of the egg. First they describe coreolis forces, gravity, and the shape of the earth and then you balance an egg standing up on a nail. To sum up all the science and physics its easier to balance an egg at the equator. Now, mind you this is no special nail. In fact it was crooked, and had been rounded at the edge, and it was windy, and a light misting action. Not conducive to egg balancing, but I got it after a few intense minutes followed by light calesthenics, and a retry. My mission was accomplished. I can leave Ecuador a happy man. I got a stamp in my passport, a certificate for balancing the egg, and left.

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In case you were curious how to make a shrunken head...

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Real One...

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Fake One...

The whole reason I came to Ecuador was because three years ago I saw on TV someone balance the egg, and since then I made it my goal to do the same. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!! Like if I could don a flight suit and have a big party on an aircraft carrier I would, except this time it would be for real.

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Job well done if I might say so...

Also went to this church and climbed to the top of it for a view of the city. It wasnt anything that noteworthy except that to get to the top is ultra shady, and even by this guys standards. The staircase was almost inverted, it was so vertical, and you took a rickety rope bridge above the actual cathedral ceilings and the roof to get to the dome. This sounds weird, and youd never understand it, but it was really cool. Walking around I found a skate park in one of the main parks of Quito, and shredded it up for a heartbeat with these dudes. Also went to a museam of this famous Ecuadorian artist Guyasamin. His art is amazing. Since I have failed to have been properly educated in the fine arts (even though I dated an art history major for a couple years), I faked the funk with my nose high in the air ensuring at least one minute on an internal timer to properly examine each article of interest.

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Rait park

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Church view

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Guyasamin pics

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And a sculpture of Blakey Holmes doin work...

There was a soccer match in Quito between this team from Brazil and Quito. It was nuts because it was the finals for the South America Cup (smaller continental competition than World Cup, but quite impressive nonetheless), and Brazillians poured in from everywhere to watch. I was going to go, but for $50 a ticket from a scalper (not sure my spanish is up to that par yet), I decided its out of my price range. The second and final game of the finals is in Brazil on Wed. Should be sick!

In MotoGP news, Rossi crashed out of the race in Assen last week. He took out De Puniet, which is good so that bastard can get a taste of his own medicine. They used to call him the big green bowling ball. Despite going down on lap 1 with cold tires he still went on to take 11th for the race relinquishing the championship position back to Pedrosa who came in second. Germany is in a week and half time. The Sachsenring circuit has been a favorite of Rossi, and on the Bwin.com bets he is holding the odds for winnner.

After being in Quito too long, it was time to move on, but I wasnt feeling too hot just yet. I took a day and went to the thermal springs at Papallacta. A two hour bus ride away its a solid trip that leaves one refreshed, and ready to tackle the next big challenge. I met up with an asian guy from Brooklyn, and we exchanged a lot of ideas. They had a really hot bath that was next to the flowing river, and if you go back and forth its supposed to cleanse your body of toxins and cure ailments. It didnt take any more convincing than that. DONE! The guy ran a Kaplan, and was on vacation so wasnt going that cheap. He bought me lunch (SCORE!), and we headed back. I was ready to take on Cotopaxi.

Back in Quito I signed up to do a day trip to Cotopaxi which is the second largest mountain (volcano rather) in Ecuador. We were suppposed to go to 5,000 meters and see glacial ice and then mountain bike down to the refuge. I had to be at the cafe in the Mariscal (gringo town) at 7 AM. At the hostel I set my watch, and after watching a few minutes of Demolition Man in spanish dozed off. I woke up to a creak in the hotel at 6:53 in the morning, and knew it was impossible to make it. I smoked $35 down the drain that day! Soooo pissed

Instead of Cotopaxi I went to Baños, which if your wondering why there are bells going off in your head your high school spanish is kicking in and you are recalling a bathroom. You guessed it, there is a major town in Ecuador named after the John. Just like the southern tier has a town named after a Johnson, Ecuador also has a potty mouth. I got here and after checking into the hostel plants and whites (wtf?) went to this place. They rented motorbikes. A 250CC dirt bike for 10 an hour, a shitty CVT quad for 8, and a baja for 12. Wait did someone say Baja? Hell yeah! I laid ten on the table and took the keys. After they gave me a helmet that looked like it came straight from TEs shed it was on. I attacked the mountains of this place with a vengeance (ok, it was a lil underpowered so I have a hard time emphasizing the vengeance part). I went up this volcano above town which they said not to because two years ago it erupted killing people and blocking the only road to the town, and went untill I couldnt see anything in the clouds. Then I raced down determined to max out the speedo. Time to test the brakes (on a spot of sand and mud). Got it to 65 kph and locked em up. I no shit almost went flying off the mountainside, and in the process of gaining control almost rolled it, it was awesome!

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Couldnt help myself

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Twisties, going ultra slow because taking pictures and driving is always a bad idea

Today I went on a bike ride and white water rafting. It was cold and miserable at 830 when we were supposed to leave, and I almost copped out but fuck that. I paid, and I need the exercize. How else am I supposed to climb effortlessly in the Himalayan plateau. Me and Tito took these bikes in the worst weather ive ever ridden a bike in 17km to the pickup point. I couldnt see most of the time, and we were covered in mud at the end. Halfway we stopped at this place with a basket thing. Tito said I could do it for a dollar, so I hopped on without knowing what it was. It was some sort of a zip line thing run by an engine, but this was no regular engine. It was a four cylinder turbo hooked up to a car transmission in third gear. It took me and these two older folks (who im sure soiled their diapers) across at like 40mph to the other side. After looking around for about two blinks of an eye the girl gave the signal (waving a blue jacket in the air), and we were immediately back. Since the guy didnt have change for a ten I rode for free (so many scores in this entry - im getting good). We then had to go through a couple of tunnels. They were curvey so you couldnt see light at the other end. It was really weird going in, getting darker and darker, and going like 15mph into nothingness. If I felt the wall Tito told me to turn away, that was his only guidance, other than to try and imagine where you should be. I managed (or we managed, and went to the rondezvous).

After biking was white water rafting. We met with four others (who didnt want to do bike riding - panzies), and hit the water of this river. It was really moving because it rained hard the night before. Tito made us hit every gnarly wave, and cruize the hardest line through every rapid. Without the ailing foot and duct tape boot I was ready to be the captain of the ship and took the helm (or bow?) and got my face in the action. It was class four, and was way cooler than when I went on the black river in NY. Although, before I went in NY the day before I almost died twice on the DRZ getting loose in the twisties by the Binghamton airport and I remember being like ¨fuck motorcycles are crazy¨and then white water rafting wasnt all that of a rush. This time I didnt have anything like that so it was really sweet. After I got a free meal at the indigenous village (where the others in the boat were going), and we headed back.

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Last but not least, the Cuy Trifecta...

Tomorrow is steam bath, bungee jumping, and then maybe a $12 massage. In three days time I head to Peru!

Posted by bejuan99 19:11 Archived in Ecuador Comments (1)

*WARNING*

Do not view if you are pregnant, nursing, or operating heavy machinery. Also mom, or animal lovers.

This one is a long one, so you might need a work package if you make it to the end. Lockhart told me its ok if you use his. Its Q8ZW01...

So where do I start. I think I left off when I first got to Ecuador. I spent like a half day in Quito, and in the morning headed to Otavalo for the Saturday market. When I got off the bus I was approached by an english girl asking me to stay at her hostel. She explained this story after her boyfriend greeted me saying that his parents in England put up the cash to build a hostel because they had land that the socialist president was going to take over because the owners were in Europe. Long story short the place was open for a week, and I got to stay with them. They drove me around in their shitty car (didnt pay a dime for a taxi!). Their place was amazing it was about 800 meters above the town with excellent views, and everything was new. The english guy was going to turn it over to his Ecuadorian cousin, but they were afraid hed screw it up because he didnt speak english so by the time I left they offered me to take it over as the manager.
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Beautiful church in Otavalo at night...

But anyways, going back to the market. So we go to the animal market. Place was nuts. Every animal possible for sale - goats, chickens, dogs, pigs, cows, llamas, rabbits, guinea pig... A couple thousand people or so. We were walking by (me and the brits), and a cage opened up by accident with 15 bulls. It was really scary and they were going nuts on the crowd, but like all good cowboys the guys had them corraled within minutes.
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Then onto the crafts market, which is a bit of an understatement. They sold everything imaginable under the sun. carpets, sunglasses, keychains, jewelry, children, scarfes, shrunken heads, etc... SIKE - no children, but serious on the shrunken heads! They had loads of food too. One street just for chicken, one for beans, one for beef. Like I said, everything imaginable. I especially fancied this mask. It means a lot. One side is for life, the other death. Its the devil with 12 horns for each month, and four noses for each equinox... I bought some stuff (no food), and was off.
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After that I met some guy who agreed to take me to see some of the villages where he grew up. We went to five villages, and they were all really rough, but each had a specialty craft. One was making the yarn, the other was to weave, one was to make hats, etc. He told me that there is a mafia that controls who is and who is not allowed to sell in the saturday market. If you dont have the money or social status you are not allowed. So what happens is that the people who are not in the ¨in¨ crowd are forced to work usually from 3am to 9pm crafting all day long. The people who are in with the mafia buy the stuff from them and sell for a lot more in the market. Now when I say a lot more, I mean a hand knit sweatshirt all handmade for 12 bucks. A handmade had for 2.50. Really interesting to say the least. As a tourist you would never go to these places without a guy like Ricardo. He spoke the littlest bit of Quechwa which is a language much different than spanish, and this allowed us to go to these places where they dont speak spanish. Not going to lie, some of the people were straight up hideous, but Ricardo says that its most likely because of incest. He also explained that life expectancy is between 45 and 60 depending on your altitude. 45 in the lower parts, and you get older as you go up. He also explained how the indegenous population of Ecuador is dwindling and is expected to be very very low by 2012, but in Otavalo its the oposite. Pay attention for later...

My new sweetheart... I know I look like a dork, but she likes me for every bit of it.
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I was so popular with the ladies, you have no idea...
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That night we had a BBQ with fish from the market (Tilapia, Snapper, and Barracuda) at the hostel with the brits that own the place and this other british couple who are their friends and coworkers or somehting along those lines. We had no idea how to cook raw fish, but it turned out ok in the end. The hard part was getting the fire started. There is no easy light Kingsford charcoals from the local supermarket. All they have is no shit like pure from the earth coal. It takes quite a bit more skill to get that going. With a little assistance from all corners of the globe we managed, only after struggling for an hour and a half.

Post BBQ we went to the local cockfight. A local tradition which is more or less a celebration of the market. The owners parade their chickens around this table and make them gawk to show how powerful they are, bets are placed and they fight. They fight only after putting on a steel pointey, pin like thing in the back of their hooves (?). As brutal as this sounds this is the secondary weapon which pales in comparison the the ever functional beak. There is a referee, and rounds, and a scoreboard, and a bar. Very professional. They even have designer cases for their cocks. Like someone went out of their way and designed a fashionable carry case for four or so cocks at a time. Ridic... It wasnt as violent as it sounds, but I am witholding pictures in case females are reading.
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The next day I went with this girl from Holland I met the day before to meet this other girl from Germany and this local. The girl from Germany was doing this thing called couchsurfing where you just sleep on someones couch (the local guys) and become friends. He apparently was pretty cool because he took us around all day for $3 gas money. We started the day by going back to the market for a custom drink. He highly recommended the one he was having because in the night was the fiesta, and you need all the energy for that. Before he could finish his sentence I had one in front of me. I didnt pay attention as to what went into it, and three quarters of the way into it the German girl tells me how she wouldnt have done it because she had salmonilla poisoining in Peru. WHAT!!! So the drink was made of a beer, an egg, chocolate syrup, protein, a local fruit, sugar, and tea. Oh well, I was in too deep, and besides I needed the energy for the fiesta. Down the hatch suckas!

Then went to an inactive volcano that the crater has filled with water creating a lake. It also has these two islands in the middle. Pretty effin sweet! We took a boat around the islands, and you could see the bubbles coming up from the volcano in the water. With purchase of the boat ride you get a free drink of something cinnamoney that tastes like chai. The guy pointed to a bottle of white wine, and I was not about to taint the drink with white wine untill I realized what he was trying to tell me that it was a local firewater, and with the chai its a delicaccy of the area. Throw that down the hatch as well! Im never going to deny free booze, even if it was 9:30 in the morning...
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So from there the four of us we went to this town called Ibarra which is about 20 km away. Nothing special about it, except they specialize in Cuy which is the Ecuadorian delicacy of Guinea Pig. Slammed a half a Cuy at this spot, which happened to have the MotoGP race on (double score), and then skeddadled for some home made ice cream. The guy and everyone else told me its not considered polite to leave any so I ate some black stuff which I think was some part of the innards, and plucked out the brains (the best part). I felt like the damn thing was talking to me the entire time... On the way home there was a guy in the street. It was a lil weird because he had his kid in a stroller next to him, regardless, instead of cleaning the windows on the cars like usual in NYC this guy was blowing fire from his mouth for a nickel. Good times! I thought it was gasoline untill the local guy corrected me when he told me it was diesel...
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That night went to this crazy spot with the Brits, the other two guests (who were good friends of the brits), this german couple who were working in the school next to the hostel/hotel. We got a bit loose, and then went to this field. The locals call the party fiesta del sol, and there had to be about 2 or 3,000 Indigenous people dancing. I had no idea why unitill I got back to Quito, but its because the 21st was the summer solstice which to them represents when the sun is away (southern hemisphere), so they party to bring it back. In the middle of the dancefloor was a rope with chickens hanging upside down. When you dance you try and jump up grab one by the head, and rip it off in one swoop. If you do that you get to go home with 5 that night. Typically the victors would then take the headless chicken and swing it around like a lasso dousing the crowd with blood for good luck. They believe that if you kill an animal it means more will come next year. There are waayyy too many dogs in Otavalo, and in Ecuador for that matter, but they cannot do like animal control becuase they think it will bring a wholllle lot more the next year. So I went native and did the deed with the chicken... SIKE! I saw a guy do it and he made me hold his chicken becaue he was so proud. I was convinced Id get bird flu. It was a crazy experience.

Then we went to the waterfall. At midnight almost everyone from the party goes to this waterfall, takes their nickers off and takes a quick dunk in the icy water. Most are too drunk to feel it, but its like a big parade to the waterfall, and then back to the little village. They play flutes the whole time, and this guy was dressed in white. He was the virgin, and his ass got sacrificed. The Indigenous are a bit backward. The virgin was a guy, and in the villages the men are the only ones who are allowed to weave and the women tend to the fields.

  • **WARNING*** DO NOT READ IF YOU ARE A FEMALE THAT EVER FOUND ME ATTRACTIVE AND WISH TO CONTINUE SO

Next day headed back to Quito. Did some more walking around, looked for a restaurant, and some guy from Long Beach saw I was struggling with my spanish and told me to eat with him. He also offered to pay. Score! I got some plate with fried chicken which I hate, but I hadnt eaten all day so I devoured it. After I went back to the Hotel and wasnt feeling good so I layed down. At around midnight I got so sick I had no idea what was going on. I managed to the bathroom only in time. I lost all the water in my body, and by two in the morning was so thirsty i couldnt feel my tongue. I had no water to replenish what was lost but there was nothing I could do. I mustered the energy to go downstairs to the lobby and told the guy id give him 20 bucks to get me some OJ. Yeah, that didnt work. Time to suck it up more. I cant go to a hospital. Im a sick tourist alone in the middle of the night - perfect situation to go wrong. Plus I hate hospitals, and I cant even imagine one in Ecuador. The tap water is tainted, and is no good. I thought I was literally dying of thirst, and man was that painful. After sleeping 12 hours (of which about 1 was sleep, the other 11 was yelping and moaning in bed) I once again went downstairs, but this time a store was open. I drank two liters of the first thing I could find (fanta) and went back to sleep for another 8. At this time I was able to get some medicine from the local store. Its been three days, and I just started eating bread. Things are looking up. I am so petrified of food, and no place looks clean enough after that encounter. I looked up the symptoms, and the lady with the drugstore agreed it was an stomach infection from some combination of the egg in the drink in Otavalo, the food in Quito, and the water in the juice I had wiht that same dinner. I slowly am realizing how good the US is, however when the medicine is given at a drug store for $1.35 without a perscription you cant beat that with a ten foot pole. Needless to say, I earned my backpacker stripes. A three day infection/sickness doesn compare to the Israeli guy who had the worm in his knee, or the Aussie who had the stomach full of worms, but its good enough for me.

Posted by bejuan99 18:12 Archived in Ecuador Comments (2)

Last day in Bocas, Boquette, and finally off to Ecuador!!!!

Alright, so I had to finally say goodbye to Bocas. That place is the shiz!

On my last day there I went on a quasi date with this chick from the spanish school Corinne. Shes from Cali and is really cool, but after dinner we went boozin and she got a lil weird on me. Oh well.

So the next day I hopped the water taxi to Almirante, where I saw this awesome ship that was sunk in really shallow water I guess. Its hard to tell, but is awesome regardless.

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It took me 9 days to finally get around to taking a picture of this mural in our apartment at the hostel in Mondos.

My name is Bijan, and I endorse this message. If you take out reports and replace with R014s you can see the connection.... I hope DS isnt reading!

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From Almirante I hopped the bus to David, and then to Boquette. They call that place rehab because thats where everyone goes to sober up after Bocas. When I got there I ran into the swiss girl from Bocas which was cool. I hung out with this teacher dude from Argentina, and learned about Patagonia, a fake Erin Kayko who was studying ME at University of Rochester, a dude from Colorado, and some aussies. We were staying at this guys house named Pancho. He was nuts. Like totally out of his mind. Its 7 bucks to stay the night, and 8 if you wanna smoke a dubey(s) with him and drink beers. So much for the rehab part...

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Boquette is beautiful and mountainous. It was nice to get into the mountains because Panama is the worlds sweatbox, and you never feel clean anywhere. Even when under a cold shower you feel gross. From Boquette I went back to Panama City to catch the flight to Ecuador.

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Apparently the most efficient way of curing global warming is to send people all around central america to burn the ozone up in that area. To fly from Panama to Ecuador I had to go first to San Jose, Costa Rica, then up to San Salvador, El Salvador, layover to a flight to Lima, Peru, layover to flight to Quito. I could have flown to Timtamku for christ sakes! Oh well, its my fault I asked for the cheapest tickets.

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This guy kind of looks like Conko with the ship captains hat...

I spent the night in Quito, and then shot up to Otavalo where im at right now for the Saturday market. Its the biggest in central and south america so it should be hoppin. Im going to eat some nasty ass bugs and animals for like two cents tomorrow. Hell yeah!

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Bro, quit clownin around....

So it should take like an hour and a half to get here, but if you ever take a bus in Ecuador you cant help wonder if it is truly a bus or a moving mall. Every three minutes they stop and let someone on who is selling the most random shit. It almost is a sigh of relief when they sell something normal like sodas. No shit, in the span of like ten minutes of leaving the bus station there was a guy selling bananas, oranges, batteries, bike locks, socks, for some reason like wrist and ankle supporter thingeys, pornos, and a whole crew of guys selling dried plantains. I think I have found my calling in life! Selling pornos bus to bus....

Posted by bejuan99 16:30 Archived in Panama Comments (2)

Ba Ba Ba Bocas

Yeah, so ive been raging out of control here in Bocas for I dont really know how long, but I think over a week. This place is really freakin sweet.

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This pic pretty much sums this place up...

I finished up my one week of spanish lessons and the PADI scuba diver certification program. As far as the spanish classes, I didnt really try half the time, the other half the time i went hungover, and on my last day all i did was drank beers with the spanish teacher. Needless to say, Bocas Del Toro is not an environment that is conducive to learning.

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Nathalie, who manages the spanish school is the coolest person ive ever met hands down. She says her secret to living is to drink, smoke grass, and make love every day cause shes 40 and looks 26.

As far as the scuba class that was awesome! We had four dives that average 50 minutes or so each, and I did really good. We saw coral, squid, an assload of fish, a barracuda, and a shipwreck. The shipwreck was about 40 feet below, and for some reason the only thing left on the top of it was a toilet. The dutch guys I was with got a kick out of taking pictures pretending they were taking a dump on the ocean floor.

There is this really cool bar here called the Aqua Lounge, and you go there and just get boozed up and go swimming in the ocean. They have diving boards to the ocean, and one of those floating trampolines, and a whole lot of hammocks. That place jumps off on ladies night too. Ladies night here literally means that which is funny. If you are a girl you drink for free all night, and the bars here dont have a time they close. They only close when the police come, so if you see some jakes outside the club you can tell its almost last call. Actually all the bars here are cool.

Im staying in this place at the Mondo Taitu that is kind of like a big apartment. Ive been hanging close with a group of about 10 Israelis and a German girl. The Israelis are awesome. They really know how to party and they always have the tasty KBs. By the way, there is enough KBs here to keep even Reza Terry lifted... Every night the Israelis cook a group dinner for like 12 and so I have been eating for free to which is good.

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I think the german girl Daniella got bitten by that bug that lays an egg and a worm grows inside of you. Today at the beach we were trying to get the worm to come out, but weren't successful. We are going to wait till tomorrow to see if it comes out.

The other night this aussie got really drunk and cut his foot really bad. I woke up to him yelling he needed help and there was a pool of blood around his foot. He got stitches the night before, but then he wokeup and it was pretty bad i guess. I helped him to the hospital. It was not a good vibe at all.

I was supposed to go to Boquette, but I dont think Im going to now. Im supposed to leave on the 19th for Ecuador, but dont want to go at all. When I was in Panama City my buddy Raphael called Bocas a backpackers paradise, and man did he really know what he was talking about. I wouldnt describe it any other way.

As im writing this I realized how bad my english is. Ive been dumbing it down so the Israelis and others can understand, but I have to snap out of it. Ive been picking up a lot of the Israeli slang too, which is funny. They have the weirdest sayings, for example...

Bombs to the eyebrows, eating the movie, breaking your dick, dick on the face, etc....

I think you get the point. Next stop, the Equator!

Posted by bejuan99 16:26 Archived in Panama Comments (2)

Bocas, Bastimentos, and La Playa

So I finally got my damn bag, but it made me realize I dont need any bags as long as I have enough change for a couple cervesas, the clothes on my back, and the ticket to the next country.

In the words of Sean Spikoli... All I need are some tasty waves, a cool buzz, and I'm fine.

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Me and my bud back in the Ciudad. Despite looking like Charles Manson he was really cool.

Once I got my bag I left Panama City and headed on an overnight bus to Bocas Del Toro. The guy warned me that it might be cold on the bus, so I brought a sweatshirt. Man was that guy making an understatement!!! That bus was so damn cold it wasnt a bus. I got the skinny on how they manufacture the busses in Panama.

They first start with detailed plans for the worlds largest cryogenic chamber (as laid out between walt disney and howard hughes). Then they essentially put wheels on it and disguise it as a bus. They they take about 3.5% of the cooling power to drive the wheels. No wonder why this country is so inefficient. That shit was so cold, I couldnt sleep so I eventually got frustrated and ripped the air vents out and stuck a plastic bag in there. It still kept my seat at near absolute zero, despite wearing everything I had on me at the time. I think they figure that since its an overnight bus that they have to freeze everyone to a popsicle to keep them from complaining about the long ass ride. For $20 bucks though, what can you say...

So I took this ten hour bus, hopped on a water taxi (the only way to get around here), and have been hangin out since. I started my spanish school, and hopefully it helps but im pretty sure that it wont if I keep going as hungover as I was today.

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My swiss friend from Spanish class and monkey...

Im staying at this place called Mondo Taitu, and its known throughout Panama as being one of the craziest places around. I got trashed with a bunch of guys from Israel (they are everywhere), including the dudes I was in San Blas with. Tonight is 80s power hour, and although I dont really have any 80s gear with me, there is a costume bucket filled with funny stuff back at the place that I might have to delve into before I can get into full charachter.

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I rocked this bitch fo sho...

Last night was hillarious. So we go to leave the hostel for a nightclub around 2, but they were already closed because it was late, and so me and this aussie look right at eachother kind of like "do you see what I see." So about three and a half minutes later we assembled a team and were on our way to stealing a go kart that was lying in the street. It had a flat tire, but that was no problem because we manhandled that thing like the firefighters in the Mentos commercial from the 80s. We had the "racist" dogs with us for protection. Apparently they only like backpackers, because this one local tried to join the party and they bit the shit out of him.

This town is for surfers and skaters for sure. Its got a real carribean vibe about it, and I like that. There are a lot of Rastas here, and they speak a weird combination of french and english which is their own language. Theres a shitload of beaches that I plan to make my way to tomorrow....

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Posted by bejuan99 14:39 Archived in Panama Comments (2)

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