It has been a very busy few weeks, with lots of events going on, and with fun friends and interesting visitors passing through.
Carnavale has come and gone. It was crazy here as usual, but I don’t think it was as crowded as last year. My friend Davida Julian and her honey Tom came for a visit during that time. Davida owns property in Montanita, currently lives in Pennsylvania, but looking forward to moving here permanently. Davida and I first met a couple of years ago, we haven’t seen each after that, but have kept in close touch since then. It was fun to see them!
|Tom and Davida|
Photo Courtesy of Davida
|One of the gringo nights at|
Ojas in Olon
Solid friendships have been forged, helpful information has been exchanged, and we have a good time together. Todd and I don’t make it to all of them, but always enjoy ourselves when we do go.
Last Saturday, a bunch of us went to Deb and Cy’s house (near Las Nunez/before La Entrada) for a “March Birthdays” potluck. The potlucks are always fun, with delish food.
|Cy and Deb|
Photo Courtesy of Deb
|Wicked dice game happening|
March Birthdays Pot Luck
|Photo Courtesy of |
|A little breakfast nibble at Heather's|
Ayangue home on our way there.
|View of Ayangue Bay|
from Heather's balcony
|Shopping around the|
Buen Aventura Mall area
Photo courtesy of Heather
It was a fun and delicious and well-lubricated- lunch. Afterwards, several small groups wanted to break off to finish “city” errands, with a couple of gals holding down the fort at Luv N Oven as our final van-ride-home rendezvous point. Most of us made it back in plenty of time to enjoy late afternoon drinks with local Salina’s expats that just happened to show up there for an early dinner.
|Bumping into the |
Famished and thirsty after the chicken bus ride there, a brief troll through Buen Aventura area, and a quick stop into the black hole called HiperMart in El Paseo Mall, we were on a mission to find the good Mexican restaurant we had heard of in nearby Salinas. We caught a cab from the mall to get to Salinas to find restaurant (visions of tacos and margaritas dancing in our heads). We had the name of the restaurant, we knew sorta where it was at in Salinas, and our initial cab driver assured us he knew right where the restaurant was.
NOT EXACTLY…He searched fruitlessly, going around in circles until Deb and I decided it had to be “near here” and hopped out to find it on foot. Out of cultural politeness, Ecuadorians will never tell you they “don’t know”, with their best intentions meant to be helpful.
Two cab rides later (and an accumulated twelve blocks walking in between) to find said Mexican restaurant, we found it!
Maybe not the best planning on our part, since it was the Tuesday after Carnavale, but most everything was closed. After we were melting into the sidewalks from the heat, crabby from hunger, a pint low on beer, and asking advice from the local crack-ho for “best place to eat around here?” (ahem, Deb… who deserves at least a little credit for asking la pregunta en español), we were finally directed to Lov N Oven for a delightful afternoon before heading back home on the chicken bus.
This IS NOT a fancy place. A $2 entrance fee at the door gives all day access to the mud pit, swimming pools, and mineral spring (massages are extra – around $5 for either the mud or the aloe vera massage).
An all-day pass to the vapor room is $3 – get it.
I think it’s worth at least one visit to San Vicente Baños, if you have the time, and if you are not too squeamish.
Totally unfair to look
this good in mud.