18th August – Thursday
Got up at 7. Breakfast at Jimmy’s at 7.30. Eggs, juice and coffee. Took a picture of Jimmy and one of me lifting Nancy. It was quite a strain! Caught the 8.10 coach to the ferry which turned out to be the best bus ride we’d had. Ferry, then bus to the airport, followed by plenty of waiting. There was a girl from Sussex who hadn’t confirmed her flight so didn’t get on. We recommended Hotel Sol y Mar to her and off she went on the bus. Stopped over at Guayaquíl for 30 minutes and arrived in Quito about ten to four. This time we made sure that we found a good looking taxi and that paid off – we had a safe and secure journey.
After checking in to El Cafecito we went souvenir shopping and all ended up satisfied with our purchases. We deposited our loads in our room and headed for Reina Victoria for a Newcastle Brown. Again, they didn’t have any, so we had a Czech beer called Topvar which was very nice. We met an American woman from Florida who worked at the Embassy in Quito. She was called Joyce Moller and was quite interested in what we were doing, especially Oli’s book and Dad’s Eurocost work. We went to La Chosa for dinner. I had cerviche palmita (cold palm heart soup) followed by lomo (steak) and some fruit drink that I’d had on my first night in Ecuador. It was called chicha de morocho and was delicious. We rounded off the evening with a visit to big Dave’s for a farewell Margeurita. there followed the noisiest night of our stay during which we must have clocked up about one hour of sleep between the three of us.
19th August – Friday
We got up at 7 am and each had a shower. Now that we were going home, the plumbing had finally been fixed. The water flowed strongly and was hot. Once we’d packed, we took our stuff round to the Magic Bean where we had breakfast. I had a bundle of clothes, shoes, et cetera which could be distributed amongst the poor people of Quito by the South American Explorers Club, so off I set. Dad directed me to keep to the same road to the top, then turn left. Unfortunately, “the top” was a couple of streets too far, and I consequently found myself on an hour long tour of Quito on foot. I passed the National Stadium on my left, and the University on my right, terminating for brekkers at the Magic Bean. I had blackberry pancakes and juice and coffee. I left the bundle for Bill to get to his brother, Logan, at the S.A.E.C. Perhaps I should have done that in the first place.
After breakfast, we had another safe taxi drive to the airport, lots of queuing for check-in, payment of tax and departure.