Bread and jam was the free breakfast again, at least it wasn't accompanied by Peach juice and then after a supermarket run we were off to Mancora. The only thing we knew about Mancora was that it had a Loki hostel and was good to party. So we thought we'd have a little party before we crossed the border to Ecuador.
It was 19 torturous hours on the bus, mainly because I had one chapter of my book left so that was gone, my battery on my iPod had died and all the movies were rubbish and in Spanish, so the only thing to do was sleep. We were also got given a chicken meal on the journey that smelt like food poisoning, still it was free so we ate it hoping that the results would not mean we would be spending our time in Mancora on the toilet. We arrived in Mancora at 8am, the Loki hostel was like heaven, hammocks, swimming pool, bar, pool table, table tennis table, giant connect four, giant jenga, beds by the pool, not sun-loungers actual beds. With events similar to the Loki Cusco hostel it promised to be a stay full of drunken shenanigans and hangovers. The only thing the hostel didn't have was a decent book exchange which I was in desperate need for as I was bookless. Unable to check in until 1pm it gave me the perfect time to catch up on my blogs which I'd fallen way behind on. Once we checked in our overstay like dorm room, to be fair it wasn't as shabby as the cheap hostel we like to tell everyone about where we stayed in Thailand but it definitely wasn't the best we had ever stayed in. So after we acquainted ourselves with our new surroundings we had a wonder into the one street town, there wasn't much to write home about the street consisted mainly of market stalls selling Mancora t-shirts, vests, souvenirs and man-bands, which I had to buy another after losing my first and giving my second away to Doctor Suze. With my third Peruvian band purchased we set about finding some food, we settled on a simple cheap establishment which offered the usual Peruvian menu of starter and main course, weirdly my starter translated into Russian eggs it was much like egg mayonnaise but with a side of potato salad and my main was chicken and chips, this was washed down by the purple corn Chicha which I wasn't particularly fond of.
We made it back to Loki just in time for the first happy hour and instantly got some beers in and met some familiar faces from our travels. The three Aussies chicks from Tassie had just arrived looking for jobs, along with Ricky and there was our also our old friend Sam who we met in Route 36, La Paz. So we had a beer and mango slushy with him before taking part in the Loki Olympics. Loki Olympics was basically organised chaos. It was teams of three and we joined a Canadian girl called Eliza to form Team Ramrod. No one had much idea what was going off, and most of the time there was a fair bit of cheating, we didn't win any of the events which included downing and ice slushy, flip cup, throwing and catching water balloons, dissolving an ice cube and bounce ball. We came close in a couple of the events but ultimately was always the bridesmaid and never the bride. I do however think we would have taken home the fair play award if there was one. With beer in our system and competitive spirits high Earl and I decided on making our own fun. This consisted of roping in four American girls to join us in a game of flip pong. We learnt flip pong from an annoying American guy in Cusco, he was a complete t*** but to his credit he did bring to our attention this game. For those of you unaware of flip pong it is a mixture between flip cup and beer pong. Two teams of three face off against each other. And six cups per team in a straight line at the opposite end of the table. One person starts by trying to throw a ping pong ball in one of the six cups and they keep doing this until they succeed. Once the ball is in the cup the second person skulls the beer and then flips the cup over. The third person in the team is simply the wicket keeper and gets the ball for the thrower as fast as possible. Once the ball is in a cup, the beverage drank and the cup flipped everyone moves round a place. The winners which in this instance happened to me Fake Summer from Californian, Seattle Liz and myself are the first to pong and flip all of their cups. My crowning moment and class showboating was doing some stretches as we had plenty of time and then placing my first shot straight in the cup to set up the win, despite an attempted distraction from Earl. The games didn't slow down either as when the Americans left Earl and I went one on one at good old regular beer pong. I impressed in a landslide victory to start and then Earl pulled back level in a more evenly matched second game in which we drafted in a couple of cleaners to play with us for a short time. With the scores level we decided to each rope in a player to share our burden on the last game, Earl got a very drunk Irish guy who most people said was rubbish. I got an Australian who said he was decent. I was confident, but we got slaughtered as the Irish guy turned out to be quite the beer pong player. With some hard core drinking taking place in a short amount of time it had begun to hit me and food was in order, the pasta dish did nothing for me though as I ended up passing out at the embarrassing hour of 8pm. The next thing I knew it was 4am and I woke to chunder over the balcony and get my phone from the locker to see if I had any friends, however on my way I bumped into Earl who was still out and once again in his Hodor phase. He asked if I had his phone as he had lost it, I didn't. He also said he had my phone. He didn't he had another random phone and a pack of cigarettes. Panic set in as we thought we had lost all our items in our locker including both of our phones, my wallet AND Earl's passport. An enquiry at reception led us to one culprit. Earl. He was apparently the only one in the vicinity going back and forth on a few occasions. What had happened is Earl had cleared out the locker and moved it to his bag but in his Hodor drunken stage he had forgot completely about this leaving him and me panicking about the wear abouts of our belongings.
The one positive thing about passing out at 8pm is that you get a solid sleep and I was up in time to watch the Man Utd game. That however, proved to be quite difficult with one small TV room and one TV and a mixture of rugby and various football fans getting my own way and having the United game on was challenging. I settled for the first five minutes which let me witness the Rooney goal and the last five minutes where I watched us somehow cling on to the 2-1 lead we had. Sam, his mate Callum and an annoying Aussie guy called Jono - yes another Jono from Australia were all up still from the night before and the beers were still flowing and it wasn't long before another friend Charlie joined us. It promised to be a long day, I just hoped I made it to the UV glow party that night and more importantly past 8pm. Luckily things starter to slow down when I met Earl who was looking like a member of KISS but without the make-up. To sort out our hangover we went on a mission to find a greasy burger which we did successfully, we then decided to book a bus out of Mancora for the following day, it wasn't that we didn't like Mancora, in fact it would have been quite nice to stay an extra few days to celebrate Earl's birthday. There was just a couple of things that put us off staying health and finances. If we stayed the amount of alcohol consumption would undoubtedly have killed one or both of us and also left us with a bank account very much in the red. So we booked a ticket which would see us visit our eight country of our tour and go to Guayaquil in Ecuador.
The sun was soaring but instead of going out in the midday heat like a typical Brit and getting frazzled I decided to stay in the bar and update my dream team competition which I was a few weeks behind on. It took me all afternoon to catch up on the best fantasy football competition in the world, but I finished right on time to go up to the light house to watch the sun set. As per usual we made the journey hard for ourselves scaling the side of sandy, slippery hill. Once we were at the top we tried to cut through the small set of houses on the top so we could get to the tip where the light house was situated. The locals were having none of it though and we had to descend back down the hill, at least this time we found a proper track and steps to go down, which in turn led us to the right track to get to the light house. We raced up there as we were close to missing the sunset but just made it in time. Also at the top were Sam and his cronies and we enjoyed a warm English festival beer and watched the sun set over Mancora and its beach and fleet of boats and ships. On our return to the hostel we stopped off for dinner and had thee typical Peruvian menu, only this time I had another very Peruvian dish called Ceviche. Ceviche is found all over Peru but mainly at the coastal towns, the dish is raw fish marinated in lemon and various other things, served with salad and maze. I was actually fairly impressed with the dish, although I felt the addition of maze hindered the dish slightly. The main was my usual chicken, chips and rice combo and we made it back to the hostel right in time for the extended happy hour and UV party. By the way happy hour started at 8, so I had already passed the previous night's achievements. The night started slowly, the first hour mainly consisted of Sam, Callum, Earl, Jono, another Aussie called Jarred, and I sat around supping the two for one drink offers. As always though the introduction of mad Charles one he was ready and who was fastly becoming known to everyone as Charlie Sheen because of the rock style lifestyle got in the mixer things escalated. Earl and myself beat two members of staff at flip pong and then one minute I was eating pop-corn the next minute I was playing a Brummie girl at rock paper scissors to see if I could draw a UV beard on her face. I won and gave her an exceptional fluorescent green goatee. In return I asked for something manly, instead I got a bright glittery gay butterfly, I must have looked as camp as Christmas. I also managed to convince her friend to let me draw half a zebra on her face. Her friends said it looked more like the oriental black and white flag but everyone we asked knew she was a zebra. The third of the group was the least reluctant claiming to have sensitive skin or something daft but she eventually relented and I did a lady bug on her face, I added to the bearded women with cat / mouse like whiskers and I'm pretty sure I heard the rest of the party whispering that I was like a modern day Picasso. With my master pieces all complete I continued the rest of the night drinking, conversing and dancing with them. The three girls were Phoebe, Isabelle and Abbie. They had all met at Leicester University doing a degree in a couple of languages and management, they were clever girls. We drank various drinks blood bombs, beers, slushies and rums, some we even managed to sneak on Earl's tab, thanks mate. We danced and played beer pong until the hostel bar closed. With the hostel bar shut the naturally progression was to head to the beach, this time uncle Jim joined us to make the night cheaper. We may have gained one, al be it a drink, but we lost Pheebs as she had to be up early the next day for a surfing lesson, however, Isabelle, Abbie and myself headed to the beach along with Earl and his catch of the night, a girl called Alisha who looked a dead ringer for a younger version of our former Kwik Save employee Karen Cumberpatch. Things went wild at the beach, as we drank the bottle of Jim Beam and Honey. One thing should be noted though is that Uncle Jim should not be mixed with the popular Peruvian soft drink Inca Cola it is rank. The rest of the beach night descended into madness, I lost of my flip flops, Earl lost his bag luckily there wasn't anything of great value inside just his toothbrush, sunglasses and biscuits. Not sure why he took them all to the beach. We danced in the warm (probably due to piss) sea and wrestled each other on the sand, still with our UV paint on. Eventually one by one we headed back to our beds at the hostel and I had redeemed myself by making the wee hours of the morning.
A hangover was a certainty the next day, but I had just the cure: - a full English. The Mancora Loki full brekky though was terrible, there wasn't even baked beans and to make matters worse I had agreed to give one of the girls who was sun bathing by the pool some of my bacon and that was the best bit on the breakfast though it wasn't hard to beat the three tiny sausages, they we more like chipolatas, the poor excuse of an hash brown, tomato and the dry and tasteless scrambled eggs. After checking out I did exactly the opposite of what I did the previous day and was one of them stupid Brits who spent the day out in the sun with no sun tan lotion on, this turning me into a bright pink and bearing the jokes from the girls. The girls had kindly accepted me into their group, I was a bit like their stray dog but we had a good day by the pool as I continued to find out more about them. Pheebs was from near Oxford, but claimed to be from everywhere; she spoke really posh, but sometimes broke out into a Geordie accent, something she picked up from her ex, she was clearly still getting over. She flaunted her cleverness I think more than the others, not in a bad way though. She didn't even do A-Level, it was something else called IBM's or something daft which was the equivalent of about twenty a-levels. She also claimed to have no banter but she did, and she kept sussing out my plans of me pushing her in the pool. No one's perfect though and she had a very bad habit of telling ridiculously bad stories, her fact that she can say hurry hurry more potatoes in seven different languages was her best one by far. Pheebs was also instrumental in the acquisition of my new book to read His Lordship. It was an old book first published in 1970 and at the time was worth a whopping 35p. I swapped her this for Marching Powder and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I may have had a s*** deal but the book would turn out to be pretty good and I had lightened my load considerably. Isabelle was from Reading, and was the quietest of the group and also the slowest on some of the jokes. I got the impression she would be happy to go along with whatever the other two wanted and was not a confrontational kind of girl. In fact I think it would take quite a lot to anger the girl. I had a fondness of her, she was very cute, in that way that she probably didn't realise how attractive she was and top marks to her for letting me draw half a zebra on her face. Her problem though was that she picked up a bit of the Brummie accent from her mate Abbie. Abbie was a full blown Brummie and had the accent to prove it. She was the tallest of the three I think and what I liked about her was that she was a yes woman. She agreed to play me at rock paper scissors and when she lost went through with having a beard drawn on her face, and she was without doubt the most attractive girl I have ever seen with a fluorescent green goatee and she also let me throw her in the pool. Abbie though was not the best on a hangover / morning. All in all they were three great girls and when we left them later on that day for our journey to Ecuador I had the usual empty feeling of meeting awesome people and perhaps not seeing them again. I guess you can't have the highs without having the lows. We had a great day chatting, having banter and messing around by and in the pool. In fact I think I got the nickname 'Glue Hands' because of how good my catching ability was with the ball in the pool. We went to watch the sunset on the beach, another pretty spectacular sight and then chilled out in the bar until it was time for Earl and me to leave. We were going to our eight South American country Ecuador, and to a city called Guayaquil.
So until next time stay safe and take care