Dear Family and Friends,
I apologize for not sending out a blog sooner, but I have been under the weather lately. I have had a sore throat and fever for several days. After getting some good medical attention, I am now doing much better. I am sure what we did last Sunday did not help me, in any way, toward recovery.
Chuck's brother and sister and their spouses are visiting us now. We decided to take them all to a nearby town for a nice Ecuadorian lunch. Our neighbors and friends, Bill & Christa and Milena joined us on this adventure.
The restaurant we like is an outdoor restaurant and is very popular. We can get there with a 40 minute ride on the number 9 bus. It is about 15 miles from outside of Cuenca.
The first picture is everyone waiting on the corner for the bus. Some are going through their change to have their quarter ready for the bus ride.
We got on the bus. Some of us had seats and others had to ride standing for awhile.
When we got to the restaurant we all had a wonderful meal. The cost was $1.50 per person. It included our choice of grilled meat (chicken, pork or mystery meat) and some rice, corn and beans. The drink was included. For those who wanted, a fresh fruit salad was offered for an additional 50 cents. The restaurant was packed with locals. As usual, we were the only gringos there.
After our lunch we went out and waited for the return bus. We waited and waited and WAITED! After about 40 minutes Carolyn (our Spanish speaking sister) and Chuck went back to the restaurant to inquire when we might expect the next bus. To our dismay we learned that we had missed the last bus and the next bus would come by until tomorrow.
Luckily, a gentleman offered to take us into town. We were delighted. Then we found out we would be riding in the back of his small size pick-up. There were nine of us. He had his mom and dad with him, so the cab was already spoken for. The question was not if we would ride in the back. We knew that it sure beat walking back to Cuenca. The question was could nine of us fit into the back of his truck.
One at a time we crawled into the back. By the time all nine of us were in, we were wedged like sardines. He drove us back to Cuenca very carefully. We had a great time. Some of the passengers in the other vehicles on the road waved at us. I am sure we were an odd site. It is quite common to see Ecuadorians riding in the back of pick ups, but to see us gringos riding in the back was pretty unique.
He delivered us to the main plaza in Cuenca. We all arrived safely and very thankful for his generosity.
After we were all unloaded, we all went to the ice cream shop across the street and sat in the park and enjoyed our "sportsmanship" reward.
If you happen to be one of our future guests, we cannot guarantee that you will not have unexpected adventure. But rest assured that we will not take the bus out of town for lunch on a Sunday.
Nancy and Chuck