4/5/2012- been away riding my bike and smiling for 5 months!!!
I had a nice slow morning drinking coffee and eating breakfast at a nice little café. I made my why South not sure at the moment if I was going to head to Bano's or make a fast break for the border to Peru. I got to the split and had to make my decision quickly, it was nice and not raining. I hooked right and headed for Bano, the road was nice and twisty. Right away the rain came and came hard. I kept using my gopro helmet cam, because even though it was amazing rising into the mountains tunnel after tunnel I passed through. I was soaked but my gear kept me dry but cold. I came into town looking for a place to stay near the bath houses. I came upon the Plantas Blanca hostel and checked to see if they had any dorm beds and parking. I was delighted to find out they had both.
They let me keep my bike in safe parking in another hotel they owned. I walked around town and down to the river, think of Bano’s as one side slammed up against a mountain and the other side is built into cliffs overlooking the river; the city cannot get any larger. I went to dinner with a nice girl from Canada who just graduated from High School and came down to Ecuador to WWOOF. The city was nice but it defiantly was a tourist destination, buggies, dirt bikes, jeeps all for rent, tours offered on every corner, but I still enjoyed it very much so. I met a crazy French guy while I was on the terrace using the internet. He was playing the guitar (very very loud and bad) but he was having fun. I stepped onto the patio and he came out asking if I wanted to hear a song, he asked what kind of music I like. I laughed and told him Metal, he got excited and played ACDC Highway to Hell while dancing around playing it he butchered a classic. He was an engineer that gave it all up to follow his music career and go to South America to do so. He had his right hand wrapped in cloth, he told me he wears it because he likes to punch walls and loves to fight. The way he talked and acted a screw was loose but I am the last to ever judge about sanity...haha
I woke up and decided to Hike the ridge behind the hostel from the Cross to the top and back down to the Virgin Mary Statue it took all of 2 hours such great views once the rain and clouds stopped. I walked all over town just enjoying the day trying to make my mind of to go for Peru of slow down and play in Ecuador. I grabbed a quick bite for dinner and headed back to the hostel, I had a new roommate who was a 50+ lady from Montana who works as a contract nurse 6 months and travels 6 months. She was a hoot cracking me up. I headed to bed early after writing Nick to see where he was in Ecuador. I woke to loud noises all night (not like me I sleep through anything) I walked outside around 6am to find the streets full of thousands of people sleeping everywhere. They had done a 60km walk the day and night before for Easter Sunday. I walked around with thousands of others just getting up and walking. My neck has been locking up so I got a cheap massage, bad choice wasn’t any good and made it worse.
VIRGIN MARY, OVER LOOKING THE TOWN
THEY HAD A ROPE SWING OFF OF THE BRIDGE
THE HOUSING RIGHT UP TO THE CLIFFS