Monday, March 26, 2012

Ecuador I: Photographic Highlights

Second time in Ecuador, filled with even more adventure than the first. Technically, this was a trip with the geology club, but it was so much more than that -- it was an experience that allowed me both to grow as a person and changed how I see the world and reflect on who I am and where I'm going. When I say "it changed how I see the world," I don't mean that in the way that naive college sophomores who study abroad and suddenly want to save starving children and become Buddhist/vegetarian (seriously, fuck vegetarians) and sing praises of global altruism while driving around in daddy's BMW do. I don't really care about the status quo, but a few things in Ecuador made me think quite a bit about the general attitude that Americans have towards life.
Anyway, here are a few cool photos of trip highlights:

 Sunset from the air
 We later found out that this is passion fruit. Having grown up in the southwest (and now living in the northwest), I'd never seen one before, and it looked pretty exotic.
 Pimpin' ... (actually, organizing my money)
Because life wouldn't be complete without a picture of Ecuadorian sex toys.
Quito Martini ... this was good and I have no idea what was in it.
 So, you can't really tell, but this is "Oreo World." Seriously. A small carnival where everything is "oreo" themed.
Josh's new and interesting fruit (pretty sure it's a naranjilla)
Another exotic fruit (dragonfruit I believe)

 This sign made me laugh.
 The fish stand at the Otavalo market
 El Mirador hostel

Lake in a caldera

Cool plants
 Hacienda in Lloa
 Mud = problem for SUVs with bald tires
 Hiking into the mist on Guagua Pichincha
Two of the guys planking on top of Guagua Pichincha.
Fish stand by the roadside
 Lecture time (near Tungurahua)
Rather large spider ... at least by my standards
Baños, Ecuador

 Ecuadorian schoolchildren playing soccer in the street. A quintessential South American image...
 Old woman looking over a valley near Tungurahua
Valley below Tungurahua 
 Sign warning of ashfall
 The ruins of a church in the village of Bilbao that was destroyed in the 2006 eruption of Tungurahua
 The place where we stayed outside of Baños
A statue of some sanctified virgin or something that we hiked up 600-something stairs to get to (near Baños). It was a decent(ish) workout.
 Pieces of buildings destroyed in the 1949 Ambato earthquake
The professors (Simon, Karen, and Dennis) in front of Cotopaxi

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