Brace yourselves, this blog is going to be a long one! So from Cuenca, we made our way further down Ecuador to Loja. We only stayed for one night at Hostel Londres (clearly chosen for its name), and the white plain walls, low beds, lack of windows and huge padlock on the door made us come to the conclusion that surely we were staying in a prison cell? I think so. Loja was a nice city that is made up of 90% teenage boys, and we had a pleasant day walking around the town and sitting in ‘Central Park’. The best part about Loja though, was our evening meal.
So we decided to go to a traditional Ecuadorian place where all of the locals go, but we forgot our Spanish phrase book and had absolutely no idea what anything on the menu was. So we chose about 3 different random things, plus a medium pizza. The humitas and tomales arrived, wrapped in a leaf, and we demolished them within seconds making a mess all over the table. It literally looked like dogs had been there. Then about three minutes later, a completely random cheese and ham toastie was placed in front of me. The way it just came out was hilarious because we didn’t even know we had ordered it, but clearly we had! Even the waiter was laughing. THEN, our pizza came!! Oh dear. The only problem with pizzas here is that so far, none of them have come with tomato sauce! But we still ate it all, obviously. The waiter was laughing at how random our meal was so much so that he brought out a woman from the back room to come and laugh along!
Anyway, we got an extremely long bus over the Ecuadorian border on Saturday that drove through the night. We had to be woken (well, we were all already awake anyway!) at 4am to get off the bus and get our passports checked and stamped, and then we had arrived in Peru! At 8am, the bus arrived in Piura and we got another coach straight to Mancora on the beach. It was a bit of a palava at first as Sophie’s and my cards both got blocked when we tried to get out some Peruvian currency! Damn Natwest. Or Crapwest. So we had to rely on Julia and her amazing Santander card to get us money to buy the coach tickets with!
We finally arrived at our destination at about midday on Sunday, and have been at this beach town since. The beaches are lovely with amazing sunsets, and this hostel seems more like a hotel, apart from the fact that we are sharing a room with four other random people! The weather is boiling and I have sadly got burnt again. Why don’t I tan?! I do actually have a watch tan which I am proudly sporting now.
So in Mancora we have swam, ridden the waves (erm), sunbathed, eaten seafood and…partied. Yes, Monday night was a wild one. One of our friends from Puerto Rico actually told us that it was the wildest night he had ever had!!!! It was a lot of fun, and I’ll just leave it at that.
Since Monday night we have just been chilling, as the long coach rides take it out of us. We did try to do jet skiing but the place was closed 😦 Oh, and we found a restaurant called Green Eggs and Ham…
Two random things for you to read. Firstly, I realised the other day that I had forgotten to bring my Olodum t-shirt with me!! I will have to pick up an authentic one in Brazil. Weirdly enough, I saw a guy wearing one today (have never seen a non-MJ fan with one, so that was cool), and I asked him where he got it from but I don’t think he understood what I meant! Oops.
Secondly, this is definitely the longest I have EVER gone without wearing makeup (yes, I was forced to wear it as a child. KIDDING. It’s the longest I’ve ever gone without wearing it since I was about 15 or 16). However, we have all made an agreement that on Julia’s birthday, we’re going to wear eyeliner. It’s going to hurt.
Anyway, we’re leaving tomorrow for Trujillo, making our way further down the Peruvian coast! Stay tuned…