Not being much into the surfing or whale scene, a day in Puerto Lopez was plenty. So we hopped another bus and headed northward, to Bahia. It's another smallish coastal community, with the downtown on a cute little peninsula. It's a little cleaner than Puerto Lopez, more white. We stayed at Hotel Bahia, a hole in the wall across the road from the beach. Our room had three double beds crowded in a small room painted lime green. It also had the ingenious design of windows all along the top of two of the walls that were permanently open. Not big enough for a bad guy to get through, but plenty big for the mosquitoes. Did I mention this is a malaria zone? And malaria mosquitoes only come out at night? Hotel Bahia is doing it's bit at keeping the tourist population down.
We found a big meat grill on the water. Sitting on a patio drinking beer, facing the harbour with boats passing by, listening to the boys listen to sport on the tv, it was almost like being home. Except for my plate of thin steaks with fried eggs and pink sauce on the side. Have I mentioned how sick I am of eggs yet?
The next day we headed for Canoa, a small town about thirty minutes up the coast. At the bus stop a big truck rolled by that was filled with people, and a young man tried to convince us that this was the bus and we needed to climb on the roof of the truck. We had none of that. The real bus rolled up shortly afterwards - no roof riding for us.
In Canoa we walked the beaches lined with tiny tents you can rent and pretend to be protected from the wind. We were trying to find some caves that were up the beach, but the tide was up and the waves were a-pounding the rocky shore we needed to scale, and I could hear my mother's sage words echoing in my ears. It's one thing to be dead. It's another thing entirely to be crippled for life! So we skipped the caves and went to eat ceviche and drink beer instead.
I managed to get two big blisters on the sides of two of my toes. They developed, popped, and rubbed raw before I really knew what was going on. All of a sudden it stung like a mofo to put any pressure on the toes of my right foot. I'll add this to my list of foot ailments that I've had on this trip (another being a surprising rash on my left ankle that sprung up, itched intensely for two days, then left a red ring just above my sock line for a week).
The next day we were at the bus terminal at 6am to catch our 7 hour bus to Quito. 10 hours later we rolled into town, hungry, tired and stiff. We checked into Hotel Chicago, the incredibly echoy place we stayed at a few weeks back. Fortunately this time if anyone had bowel issues I wasn't kept up all night by it. The only thing of note is the two German guys in my dorm who were bragging that they spent a night in a Colombian prison the night before.
Yesterday I followed Angie and Nathan around as they did some chores, then we said goodbye. They're heading North to Mindo for 5 days of heavy birding. They hope to see a few hundred new species of feathered friends. I opted out of this adventure, and now am faced with three, yes three, whole days all to myself in Quito, before I fly home on the 9th. Whatever shall I do?