29.04.2007 20 °C
First off.. I´m sorry, I haven´t blogged much, my last one was 4 countries ago. I´m not sure why, I guess things have just been a little crazy, or maybe I´m just a little lazy. Either way, not much has been blogged by me, sorry.
So, now we are in Tena. It is a small town in the Orient of Ecuador. The Orient is a very jungle-y area, with lots of rivers, sometimes it is called the mini-amazon. Its a pretty nice town, not too big, not too small, not too hot (at 600m above sea level), and the best thing about it, is that it is the whitewater rafting capital of Ecuador.
We are staying in this really nice hostal (at $5 a night) in our own room. It serves a cheap, easy, and good breakfast, which we´ve taken advantage of both mornings. The only downside of it is that its way outta town, at least a 8 minute walk to anything, no big deal.
Yesterday was a day to chill. We all wandered out into town (when it stopped raining.. it rains a lot in Ecuador) just to explore. Later, I went out and actually bought something (a bag.. probably not for me). Also, while I was out I found some good icecream, and talked to another traveller who we met crossing into Ecuador. That night, we met a guy named Neil who was staying at our hostel, and the four of us went out for a cheap, fast meal.
Today, well, today was an exciting day. We didn´t chill, I definately wouldn´t call it that. We went whitewater rafting! We headed out with the hostel owner, two guides, and Neil. After a 20-30 minute drive, we hopped out of the truck, and organized gear. The next thing we did was a half-hour rediculously muddy walk (Ryan is gonna throw out his shoes) to the river. Then, after a quick lesson on oru guide´s commands, and various other river-smart things (that I already knew.. of course) we hopped into the raft, and our second guide got into the safety kayak. Then we were off.
For probably around an hour and a half to 2 hours, we plowed through waves and scraped over rocks. Till we met where this river met another. It was awesome. I ended up falling out near the end of this session because of a huge wave, and was able to swim correctly and bounce off a nice sized rock (with my feet) and grab the raft again. I was helped back in and we continued on.
Where the two rivers met, we had lunch. It was really good, and really filling (suprising for a tour lunch). Then we were back on the river. The water got much bigger for this session. We did less craping on rocks, and more plowing through and over waves. It was even better! Soon (probably too soon in my books) we came to a road, and this was the ending point of the tour. We beached the rafted, cleaned everything off, and got everything up to the roadside. Then we had a great game of throwing rocks at trees, and throwing rocks at other rocks (guides included). Soon, the truck came, and we threw the raft up top and barreled down the road.
We got back to the hostel, got into dry clothes, other to wander into the rain to find an atm (we wandered for a long while, then gave up and took a taxi, cause it was pouring rain). Then we came here, the internet cafe.
Tomorrow we are off to Baños (which means bathroom in spanish.. but whatever), then after that, we are off to Cuenca, then into Peru (our last country!).
Take it easy everyone, I hear the weather is improving way up there.
Oh.. I forgot, we are now in the southern hemisphere, and the toilets don´t flush the other way.