The last day of Carnival (Feb. 24) had us walking downtown as none of the buses were running. Most of the shops were closed but we did manage to get a cappuccino & a cookie. We deftly avoided several marauding gangs of people with hoses & buckets & water balloons but it was like Christmas or New Years Day, very quiet, hardly any traffic & many families barbecuing in their yards or along the river. Fredi made friends with a gang of young kids, fascinated by the digital camera. They had us take several pictures of them & Fredi and then delighted in seeing themselves on the camera screen.
It's raining today (Feb. 26). The demented school master has turned over the reigns of the loudspeaker to apprentices and they've been practicing haranguing the student body all morning. The other children are marching & they've got flags (!) in the rain mind you. We can only imagine what's going on. We'd planned on going to the orchids this afternoon but if the rain continues we might (once again) put that trip off. After we'd done Spanish this morning Fredi, knowing we always go out after Spanish, set to wagging her tail & following us closely as we walked through the apartment. After awhile her tail drooped when she realized we weren't leaving right away. It's the first time since we got her that the morning routine had differed, except for the once a week we have to leave her locked in the bathroom when we go buy groceries. Upon our return her piteous tiny whimpers always pull at our heart strings. Brian & Fredi watch CNN; Shelley plays with the computer; the workmen below us pound with their hammers; Ecuador rains.
The skies cleared and we headed off to the orchids. The fellow running the place has been there for 20 years. He showed us through several rooms filled with over 400 species of orchids. We kind of expected to be overwhelmed by this garish display but not every plant was blooming & some of the orchids are tiny. It cost us $1 each for the tour; well worth the price but we both felt a little foolish in that we didn't have adequate language to show our appreciation of the flowers to the people running the place. It's quite a walk from our place (45 minutes) to the orchid farm but we managed it without getting wet and even had to take off our coats because we were too warm. We took the bus home and just as we left the bus, big rain drops started falling again. The drops turned into a biblical rain with fantastic thunder & lightning so...our timing with the orchids finally worked out!
If you want to see more orchid pictures, click on our FaceBook album: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2047922&id=1168970486&l=4cc79783f7