We met the group at the Magic Bean at 9:30 am. After introductions and the usual health
and safety admonitions, we boarded a bus to take us to the archaeoligical site.
As we entered the Pan American highway, there were vendors walking among the
vehicles waiting to pay toll,
hawking everything from kids toys to fruit. We traveled through
farmland and forests of eucaliptus trees and agave. After 1 hour 45 minutes, we arrived
at the Hacienda Gauchala, where we will spend the next five weeks.
Outside of our room
Horse and Foal
The Hacienda is lovely. The church dates from 1583. Our room has a double bed and
a twin bed, a private bath (only human waste can be flushed; Toilet paper must be wrapped
into a pretty package and deposited in the trash), a table and two chairs, plus a fireplace to
provide heat. Firewood is provided daily.
Our wing used to be horse stables. We had to step over some horse poo on the
sidewalks of downtown Quito,
but it's ubiquitous here. Outside our lab window was this horse and foal (lying down).
We can hear a donkey braying nearby.
Ecuador is quite a culture shock, from peanut butter and mustard coming in plastic
squeeze pouches, to music being played loudly at all hours of the day and night.
We are in for a very interesting summer!