OK....well i know I have already explain a bit about Quito and the culture but i think now is a good a time as ever to explain properly what its like here. When they said that all ecuadorians eat is rice and meat at the breifing....they were pretty much right. as jamie says ecuadorians have 6 food groups...carbs, meat (usually without any sauce), salt, sugar, cheese and alcohol. they DO NOT go outside these!! when they drink coffee they have it black with half a teaspoon of coffee and then at least 3 heaped spoons of sugar, u think im jokin it is true of all ecuadorians i swear and then they wonder why they have such horrible teeth!! they add carbs to everythin here, soup usually contains meat, potato and pasta...random or what, they put crisps on hotdogs (aswell as heaps of ketchup and mayo...yuck yuck yuck!!) the good things we get here include the enormous variety of fruit for so little money!! i cant even name the stuff i get (specially the stuff from the jungle) coz theres no translation so you just forget which is a shame :( oreos are 35 cents here (they used to be 30 but i guess inflation hit devooo!!) oreo ice creams are better but i just seen how much money i have left so looks like i wont be eating for a while! least i will lose the weight!! i know its so cheap here but they have 'gringo prices' which is like foreigners prices so if ur white they double the price coz they think your rich. how wrong could they be!! even a teacher at our old school tried to make us buy a piece of tack necklace for $10...as if!! i would never have paid a fiver for it in england so no chance here!! so yeah u spend forever trying to work out whether theyre charging you more than what they should be...i am a resident here afterall! you can forget eating imported food like m&ms and galaxy its like triple the price of england which is extortionate here, a pack of m&ms are $10 which is a fiver!! rip off!! you get loads of street vendors, usually little incan women who still dress tradionally in their felt hats, long braided hair and velvet skirts. they still wear traditional gold incan jewellery, i will have to take a pic of one to put on here as its so hard to explain. anyways the vendors are so cheap, they sell empanadas(fried dough with cheese in), salchipapas (chips with sausage...healthy i know!!) for like 12p!! bargain i say! you do usually have to bargain with everyone you come across tho.
speaking of incan women...the class differences here is unbelievable. the majority if not all the incan community are poor, work on the markets and on stalls in the street. some live at the markets with their children, sleeping in boxes. it is so horrible to see people living in such dire conditions but i guess thats why were here. anyways the richer people are usually the spanish looking ones, i guess thats self explanitory really. its horrible tho, some of the richer men wouldnt look twice at an incan women because of that fact. i cant see the classes ever changing, the incans want to uphold their traditions which generally means the kids will never go to uni or maybe not even secondary school as they have to work. i had my shoes shined tuesday by a 9 year old incan boy, his 11 year brother sat next to him and talked to me. neither of them go to school as they cant afford to, not because it costs but because their parents need the money they make to live. how much did they charge...50 cents...25p. neither of them can read or write and never will be able to. my heart broke when i spoke to them and if i ever need my shoes shined again i will seek them out.
one thing ecuador is soooo far ahead on is public transport, granted they dont have trains in the city but the buses are absolutely amazing. there is a trolebus which goes north to south and obv south to north, there is one straight after each other, more regular than the london underground. there is then buses running all the time, if you are waiting for a bus it is unlikely u will wait more than 10 mins. it is absolutely fantastic, someone needs to have a work with the transport minister in englad tell them to take a trip here and learn a thing or 2!!! there are soooo many beggars on the trole and metro bus actually, they come on a sing at the top of their voices, totally out of tune and distracts everyone. people here love them tho, they make so much money, think i may give it a go-i cant sing either!!
as i said before there is noooooo hot water to ahve a shower, bath, to wash up with (the plates and stuff must be covered in bacteria!!) there is also no heating or radiators to cuddle up to when its freezing at night, which it often is. i dont understand why theres not heating system in place. all ecuadorians do is winge about how cold they are...they live on the ecuador miserable b******s...try going to england!! or worse...scotland!! they are so so so soooo proud of their country tho, and understandably (sometimes) my 'mum' here never shuts up about how much better ecuador is compared to england....shes never been!! drives carla absolutely insane i swear theres gunna be an arguement before i leave!!
i cannot stress the point about men enough, they are so disrespectful towards women here especially white women. they have this perception that western women are easy and therefore they can treat us how they like. first of all their perception is totally wrong, you seriously would not believe the amount of teenage mums here...especially for a catholic country (95% of ecuadorians are catholics) but that may be becuase abortions are illegal, as it is in the usa which totally shocked me as we got it made legal in 67, i didnt realise they were quite so behind. anyways.. they dont leave you alone, i can be sat on a bus and be being eatched by at least 3 men, its not rude to stare here so they just carry on and carry on. its horrible especially when ur sat alone and you have to get off soon and its getting dark, you just dont know if they will try and follow you. it happens every night. men always say things as you walk past them as well, granted usually nice things like guapa, bonita, linda etc etc but carlas had a man shout in her face before. but they way they talk to you is to patronising and derogatory. i had a teacher from my old school try and chat me up, they get into your personal space aswell its seriously the worst feeling.
Work, well as you know i work with street kids which is hard work, they are such lovely kids, even the worst behaved. some, not all, are treated awfully. one girl, Nicol, didnt want to come and play one day, which is fine, they dont have to so her mum got out a plank of wood and went to hit her round the head. she burst into tears and came running to us. she always has blood on her. her cousin axel has stab marks all over his stomach and he too is really violent, almost def because thats the ways hes been brought up. such a shame because they are lovely lovely kids. we have to report these things but nothing is done, sometimes the social worker talks to the aprents and say this is bad it cant happen again. as everyone knows that does more harm than good. there just seems to be no solution as the govt dont get involved. the police just say if u dont like our country then get out. no win situation for these kids, just will end up a vicious circle.
on a brighter note...we went to see bryan adams on tues night, was so amazing, only a tenner aswell!! i think he was a bit speachless as everyone in the whole venue knew every word to his songs (bar me who knew summer of 69, heaven and everything i do!!) i felt stupid!! his spanish lasted a whole 7 words.... yo soy bryan...and...uno dos tres cuatro!! i also didnt actually know who he was so when the support act came on i assumed it was him lol i did find it odd how good his spanish was...idiot!!
going to the beach tomorrow!! cant wait, put more pics up for you all to flick thru if u do so desire!
much love xxxxxxxxxxx