Pictures posted on Monday, the 12h of September 2005.
Before I go on with pictures, I have a few comments. I think that many people travel and search out what they expect to find at certain destinations, whether it is temples, ruins, art galleries, neat roads to ride, museums or topless bars! After spending a week in Quito, I realize that I have posted pictures of EXACTLY what I was looking for in Quito. That included the old churches and buildings from 200, 300 and 400 years ago. But I am going to come clean. Quito is much more than what I have posted so far, so I am going to show you the other 80% of Quito. It is modern, growing and clean. You may not find the pictures interesting, but you, as I, may have a little different tilt on Quito.
So, since I can't ride, we walked around town, and stumbled on many motorcycle dealers.
Over the years I have ridden with some off-road Ducati guys (yeh, Allen N., John D. and others). This sign reminded me of our rides to Baja, with you guys on your "Lucky Strikes"! Hey, have any of you guys traded in those monsters for a nice shiny KTM 950 yet?
During our walk, we stumbled on a Shopping Mall (hey guys, I am without wheels, and remember, I am trying to show ALL sides of Quito.
This was the food court, in the mall, which was MUCH cleaner than ANY mall in Southern California. The people are orderly and clean, and pickup after themselves. They do not expect others to pick up after themselves. Again, please remember the reason I am posting these pictures is to show the other side of the country. Not just the view that you expect. I was certainly surprised. I am not expecting you to think some pictures of a mall are interesting.
Incidentally, we are still traveling by busses and taxis. There is NO graffiti or etchings in any windows (like busses and telephone booths) that is now common in Southern California.
Today we rode on a tram, to the top of the mountain directly West of Quito. The top of the tram is almost 14,000 feet.
The view of Quito, on the ride up.
One last picture of Quito on the way down. For perspective, this picture shows about 20% of the city. It is a large city, with a population of 1,800,000 individuals.
In closing, please don't take any of my comments wrong. This trip has just started. The reason I am so enthused, is that I am finding out that South America is very different then I expected, and in a positive way. We spent an hour talking to an Ecuadorian Airline pilot, and he stated that Ecuador has seen a lot of growth and improvements during the last 8 years. That is a good thing. The United States has many positive and negative aspects, as does Ecuador. But the first impression I am getting here in Ecuador is the respect of others, which seems to be disappearing, to some extent, at home.
One last closing comment for the day.... We are in and out of Internet places on a regular basis checking on the status of the bike. There are many Brit's here. Hey Brit's, what's up with the cigarettes?
Posted September 9, 2005 GOOD NEWS....... THE BIKE WILL BE HERE ON TUESDAY!
On Thursday we were walking are legs off, and heard there was a British lady in town that was on a BMW, riding around the world! Hey, there are only 1,800,000 people here. Let's try and find her. We had heard she was having problems with her bike and found out that there was a good BMW motorcycle dealer in town. We also checked her out at www.HorizonsUnlimitied.com , which is a very useful site for long distance travelers. We found a lady traveling on the web site, named Cynthia Milton, doing it on a R80GS.
So, on the bus and across town, and lo and behold, we find Cynthia. Her valves were bad due to bad gas in Peru, so she was having a complete top end performed. She has almost 250,000 miles on the bike.
She had a bad accident in Southern Chile on May 2nd, 2005 and broke her collar bone, punctured her lungs and broke 4 ribs. The bike was nearly totaled. The BMW required a new frame, forks, wheel, brakes and a lot of other things which she rattled off very quickly in her British ways. Ed and MaddBrit...... Before you ask, yes she smokes!
Here is her bike in Peru. Big load for a little lady (weight that is..... not here motivation or drive!)
We are having dinner with her tonight. You know that even though we don't have our bike yet, this trip is starting out great. I am sure we will have a nice night out. We are now very excited knowing that our bike is coming Tuesday. I will finally be able to twist a throttle! Cynthia's link is http://www.cynthia.boxerman.co.uk/ .
Sandy and I walked about 5 miles back towards our room and decided to live it up at a Fondue restaurant for lunch.
Yes, those are peppers in the eye sockets! And no, this is not the Fondue restuarant!
Pictures posted in the 12th of September, 2005
Since we are planning on heading to jungles soon, we thought that it would be appropriate to get one finally dose of culture, while in the Andean highlands. So we got tickets for the Teatro Nacional Sucre, to see a performance of "The Man of La Mancha", performed by a group from Santiago, Chile..
Although we have visited Quito many times during the last two weeks, we were informed that seeing the various plazas at night is a totally different experience. On Sunday the 11th, we went for a walk around old town. This is Church of San Francisco.
That's it for the night shots......
A few pictures from walking around on Monday (the 12th of September, 2005)
The interior of one of the smaller Churches.
I believe that this newspaper article states that 90% of the motorcycles in Ecuador are imported from China.
Well, that's it. Bike should be here tomorrow!