Posted by: Googie | April 10, 2010

My first day in South America

In the morning, when I stepped out of the airport terminal was when I breathed fresh South American air for the first time. This was the first time ever that I was in the southern hemisphere of the planet.


South America. Oh yeah!!

I would have to take a bus from Guayaquil to a small town called Baños. For some reason I have yet been unable to fathom, the Spanish word for restrooms (toilets, loos, lavatories) is also Baños. Why would anyone call their town “toilet”? Even if the town were indeed full of shit, it still is a stupid name. Imagine a small town in north India called “shauchalay”!

But anyway, Baños is the name. When my attempts at asking the people for a bus to Baños were leading me straight to the closest restroom, I decided to change tactics. I began asking for the other closest town – Ambato, and then I was able to get to a bus station.


First look at Ecuador from the bus

It was a long 7 hour bus ride to Ambato, and then a short one to Salasaca. With clear directions supplied by the school staff, I located the hostel quite easily.


Hostel Pachamama

The first person I met was Olivier from France, who took me to the library, which is quite some distance from the school itself. En route, we ran into Dotahn from Australia, and Emma & Damir from Sweden. At the library, I met Robert from the US who had been running the school (Escuela Katitawa) for the last 6 years or so. He was a 78 year old American, who was financing the school from his pension money.


The blue building is the Biblioteca (Library)

Once back at the hostel, I met Emmily from Australia, Ed & Tanya from the UK, and Morgane from France. All of us then played soccer together where 4 of us kicked the ass of the opposition that had 7 players 🙂


The Salasacan valley from the patio of the hostel

I had arrived on just the right day, because tonight everyone was preparing some kind of dessert. Here I met Rick & Nigel from Northern Ireland. Nigel had a black eye from the time he was mugged after withdrawing money from an ATM. It was a grand welcome party for me with many different types of delicious desserts, washed down with copious amounts of Cuba Libre.


Dessert Party

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  1. Well actually the word for toilets is “Baños”. N and Ñ are completely different letters. You’ll see 🙂

    • Ani, you’re absolutely right, and the city is called “Baños”!!
      I should fix my post, thanks…

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