This past week was spent eating typical Ecuadorian food, spending time with family and friends, dancing, partying and overall celebrating the foundation of Quito: Fiestas de Quito.
Most of my blog posts have focused on traveling throughout Ecuador; as much as I have enjoyed traveling throughout the country, I have also enjoyed adjusting to living in Quito. As this semester is the first time I have ever lived in a city, it has been interesting. The constant noises of the city, the number of foreigners and locals I have interacted with, the hectic transportation system and knowing how to stay safe. It has been a very different, but wonderful experience living here for 4.5 months. With only a couple of days left in Quito, I have been thinking about some of my favorite things I have experienced in the city…
1. The Museums: Quito is filled with museums of culture, art, science and history.
2. Traveling: I love how easy it is to travel to other parts of the country from Quito. The two main terminals we have traveled out of, Quitumbe (Southern Quito) and Ofelia (Northern Quito), are easy to get to as well as easy to get around. Once in each terminal, there are a countless number of buses going north, south and to the coast.
3. Chivas: The party buses that drive around the city for a couple of hours make for a fun way to celebrate a birthday– music, dancing and of course crowning the king and queen of the chiva.
4. The Landscape: The juxtaposition of the city next to Pichincha is a view I never get tired of looking at. And although Cotopaxi is about 30 miles south of the city, on clear days you can see it in the distance. The mountains and volcanoes surrounding the city is something I am really going to miss about living in Quito.
5. Juan Valdez’s Oreo Shake: Juan Valdez, a café chain in Ecuador with various locations in Quito, has the best oreo shakes.
6. The Parks: There are parks scattered throughout the city filled with playgrounds, vendors, picnic sites, trails and soccer fields, tracks and basketball courts. They are great locations for meeting up with friends, Thursday afternoon sports with the IES group, concerts and just spending time outside on a nice day.
Although I am ready in some ways and not ready in others to go back to living in my small hometown in New York, the semester is coming to a close in a memorable way and it is comforting knowing that I will be back in Quito someday.
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<div><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">My name is Alexandra Kohn and I am a junior at Bryn Mawr College. I am a psychology major with minors in child and family studies and Spanish. Outside of academics, I enjoy making art and spending time outside. I am particularly passionate about traveling and I am very excited to spend this semester in Ecuador!</span></div>