Monday, January 12, 2009

Rambling down Rocafuerte

By Graham and Katharine, with an assist from los padres.

When we arrived in Quito, Ecuador, at midnight, we could not see anything. When we woke up the next morning, it was sunny but cold. We went walking down Rocafuerte, our street, and what did we see?

Avocados galore, one behind every door.
Baskets of berries, stacked in narrow doorways.
Colonial Quito, with its cobbled streets.
Dense morning fog rolling off the mountains.
Early-bird children, in gray and blue uniforms, heading to school.
Fish frying in blackened pots.
Gold glittering in colonial churches.
Heavy bags on the backs of tiny women.
Indigenous women in brown felt hats.
Jugos de maracuya, mango, anana, zanahoria, naranjillo, manzana, mixed any way you want.
Kitchens on the sidewalks, with steaming pots of locro, sopa, humitas, and chifles.
Long braided hair on women and girls.
Munecas with rainbow-colored skirts and beautiful shawls.
Nuts, roasted in silver pans with sugar and salt.
Old women with bundled babies on their backs.
Platanos, fried and delicious.
Quinoa, a grain shaped like small beads eaten here for thousands of years.
Rotating chickens in restaurants.
Sopas and locros, served at every meal, usually with chicken, noodles, potatoes, and corn.
Tostados, crunchy corn kernels sold as a snack.
Umbrellas for the daily showers.
Volcanos as far as the eye can see.
Washing hanging on the lines.
X-crossings for pedestrians, striped like a zebra.
Yemas (egg yolks), yellow and rich, added to potato llapingachos.
Zanahorias, as big as Mom's feet.

That's what we saw on our first day, walking down Rocafuerte Street.

Our house.

The view down Rocafuerte.

Fruit & vegetable store.

Roasted pork with llapingachos.

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