A good thing we were tired when we went to bed last night. Between the dogs and car alarms I thought I was part of some type of disturbed sleep study. All part of the experience, but certainly no extended stays in Guayaquil for us in the future.
Our driver, Jorge, from Montanita picked us up promptly at 11:00 and took us shopping for groceries before our drive to Montanita to spend the next week on the beach. We went to the “MegaMaxi” which I believe is the biggest grocery type store (think Super Store, Walmart) in the country. We managed to spend a fair bit there, but bear in mind a weeks worth of rum and beer while staying on the beach (I know, I can feel the sympathy from here). Everything was cheaper than it would be at home, the selection of fresh fruit, vegetables, and meat was ridiculous. We got lots of looks being the gringos shopping with Jorge pushing our cart for us (he insisted and it wasn’t worth making a scene over).
An observation I’d like to make is on the street vendors that are prevalent everywhere in the country.
These men and ladies can be found at nearly all major intersections in the cities and just along slow moving roadways during rush hours. As well when you are traveling across country there tend to be large speed bumps in the villages to keep motorists from flying through at 100 – 120 km/h. At each of these speed bumps you will frequently see one of these vendors peddling their wares. And let me tell you about variety. We have seen everything from fruits, vegetables, coconut milk, fresh cut pineapple slices, floor mats for vehicles, gum, towels, brooms, newspapers to tooth paste.
It is quite amazing, and even more amazing is how much they sell. Like any salesman it all depends on how many times you ask but these people seem to do a fairly consistent business. Yesterday as we were wandering around lost the guy selling what looked like 300ml plastic bags with coconut milk could not keep up with the demand from hot commuters stuck in traffic.
We arrived in Montanita around 2:00 and were greeted by a very friendly couple (Bob & Rox) we were renting a room from. Karen found this place on VRBO and it had nothing but great reviews. As we were settling in the local fishermen were busy hauling in a catch right out front of our place