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An extra week for some dentistry.

Quito, Mindo and the dentist

sunny 24 °C
View Year of who knows what!! & South America on ladiesofleisure's travel map.

Did I hear someone say medical tourism. We had heard so much about it that we thought we (Sophie) would try it out in the form of dentistry.

She had ripped a massive chunk out of one of her already bung teeth so was in serious need of a crown to prevent it from tearing up the inside of her cheek. What we thought would be relatively simple and quick, turned into a week long affair as they had to get a mould of her tooth which then had to be made into the crown. This was more time than we wanted to spend in Quito and luckily, there was a cute little bird watching town called Mindo close by where we could hole up for a few nights (We've really gotten into this bird watching - if anyone needs ideas for my christmas present - binoculars.)

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All of these bird photos are courtesy of Aritz - our zoom can just not get in close enough to these suckers.
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Token funny dog shot

Along with birds, this town had a range of activities to keep us occupied and was a nice reprieve from the hustle and bustle of Quito.

It seems that butterflies are just as erratic and scary as birds, but we had a cup of concrete, hardened up and really enjoyed the butterflies at the farm. If you have banana on your finger, they like to sit there and take a nibble. Very cool indeed.

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We even saw a butterfly emerging from its cocoon which I think is something I can tick off my bucket list (I didn't actually know it was on the list until I saw it happening).

Like every small town in South America, there are waterfalls to be seen. This particular set of waterfalls involved a lot of walking in the muggy, equatorial heat and at times we did question the value in forever chasing waterfalls. But a swim appeased some of us. Sophie, Aritz and Cele were frolicking under the falls while I was a pansy on the side, watching with a twinge of jealousy. I really didn't want to do the walk out and suffer from chafe so chose to dangle my feet only. The cable car at the end provided some cool relief as the wind whipped through our hair!

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Next up on the agenda was to visit the local chocolate farm. A very simple tour but we did get to do some tasting of raw cacao, freshly tempered chocolate flavoured with honey, chile, salt and other things. We then sampled their to-die-for-brownie, which we of course went back for the following day.

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We also met this guy along the way - Photo courtesy of Aritz Ranero
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A few knots in the latest knitting project. Luckily I had a willing helper in the form of Aritz who helpfully untangled a lot of wool!

The cute little town was a lovely spot to visit for a few days. We went tubing while there, but this is only evidenced in our video. It was really cheap and so much fun. Basically they roped together a number of inner tubes from tractor tyres and we cruised down a freezing cold river with a crazy guide navigating the rapids. Great fun!

But the fun had to end as it was time to head back to Quito for some dentistry (Not as cheap as I imagined health tourism to be by the way).

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We did manage to fit in a few activities while in Quito though. We had a nice time exploring the colonial streets of the old town.

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The president also heard we were in town so stepped out of his white house to wave.

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He actually does this every Monday and the Ecuadorianos and tourists lap it up

And of course, an obligatory visit to the equator.

First we popped into the touristy fake equator which is a couple of hundred metres from the actual equator.

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The fake one does look nice, but is actually just a gimmick

The real equator was a lot better than the fake one. Not surprisingly however, as it is here you can do all sorts of fun things solely because of all the magnetic craziness that goes on at 0 degrees. The water goes straight down the plug hole on the equator. We then walked three metres away from it to the south and watched the water go down clockwise and then counter clockwise in the north. We had always thought that this marvel was a myth made up by the writers of the simpsons. Who would have thunk?

All three of us were able to balance an egg on a nail head. Apparently this is easier at the equator. Something to do with gravity and the egg yolk...

And finally, for some reason when you stand on the equator and hold out your arms, your are weaker so someone can push down on them easier than three metres south or north. Weird phenomenon or is just psychological?

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The real one

This completed our journey around Ecuador and it has been an absolute delight even ignoring the two weeks we spent in the Galapagos. We are heading up to Colombia now for a final three weeks before hitting up the US of A. Can not believe we are in our final month. Where has the time gone?

We will leave you with this video compilation of the whole of Ecuador (not including the Galapgos which really deserved its own video). It includes activities from the previous blog also.

Posted by ladiesofleisure 19:19 Archived in Ecuador Tagged mountains birds chocolate waterfall scenic cable_car tubing butterfly equator quito banos ecuador mindo bird_watching hummingbird gravity mariposario

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Comments

What did they do to your beautiful feet Soph? I thought it was dentistry you were after???

by Chazzy

Amazing! Looks like you guys had a wonderful time there (you even make dentistry look like fun...).

by Welmoed

Chazz - it's really weird, they make you put those funny shower caps on your feet when you go in. Bizzare!

Wel - Ecuador far surpassed all expectation (including the dentist;)

Soph

by ladiesofleisure

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