Ecuador Travel Stories, Page 3

Bucay Train in Ecuador

It looks like there is no train between Guayaquil, Ecuador and Bucay, Ecuador, so I will not be able to take the train. I am pretty sure there is a train from Riobamba to somewhere.

Oh well, so much for hopping the train.

I will leave tomorrow for Guayaquil by bus, stay a day, then go for the beach, I am thinking about a gold mine near Loja and may scoot across to see Loja and the gold mine, after the beach.


Bucay Ecuador Train

Bucay Ecuador Train

I am in Bucay, Ecuador between or just coming down from the mountains of Riobamba, I needed to ask where I got off because I was sleeping and it was over 2 hours into the trip. I decided that I would get off the bus when it was over two hours away from Riobamba, and it looked like it had a Hotel.

I am in the Hotel California, I hope they let me leave...
(Song by the Eagles.)

I have discovered I am right on a train route or maybe a stop, it is drizzling rain so not easy to go explore, however I will see if I can hop a train to Guayaquil. I am without guidebook and need to figure out a Hotel in Guayaquil before I arrive as the city is huge.

The city is great, the internet has another block on it, so I can not publish photos or download and upload email. I will look for another internet cafe, it is a lottery which one works.

The city is nice, sort of modern quaint, a tressle bridge, and some more Amazon looking girl, with strangely what looks like Spanish, the Spanish spoken here is really bleak.

Explanation on Trains in Ecuador
http://www.steam.demon.co.uk/trains/ecuador04.htm
Pretty good photos, however very few of Bucay Train
http://www.dazzle.plus.com/pic_ecu.htm
As alwasy someone with a tour, however good photos of trains.
http://www.trainsunlimitedtours.com/steam-in-the-andes.html


Guayaquil Hotel

Guayaquil Hotel
4:35 AM, Wednesday May 11, 2005

I am going towards Guayaquil by slow bus, I do not mean the bus is going to be slow, however I am going to stop along the way to see the country. I with I had a way to describe this type of travel better. I do call it,

Hop, Skip, and Jump
http://www.hobotraveler.com/newstips105insert.shtml
(That page is in trouble, I will fix, however it does work.)

However HSJ is more about how to travel day to day and not how to see the places.

I am going to HOP to a small village along the way, I will go to the bus stop this morning and buy a ticket going toward or to Guayaquil. Then along the way around 2-3 hours into a 6 hour trip I will leave the bus and find a room, the difficult part is to find a hotel.

I do not have a guidebook.

The guidebook is best used to find Hotels, however it also puts a person on a track, making you see what the guidebook recommends. The size of my bags slows me down a little, I really do not like walking around for a Hotel in strange towns. However if you want to see a country the guidebook is a hazard to cultural travel. Random travel is what you need to meet what is sometimes called as the real country. Everything is real, there is a desire though to find normal people that have not changed due to tourism.

The easy way is to get on a bus and get off anywhere you think looks good, ignoring the guidebook.

(I arrived in Bucay Ecuador, the internet is blocking me, this will show later.)



http://www.hobotraveler.com/blogphotos/blog174riobambaguayaquil.jpg

MAKING TRAVEL DECISIONS

1. The map has Riobamba in the right corner.
2. There is Guayaquil in the left.
3. The double red lines is where the mountains stop or go down.
4. There are two possible cities along the way. Victoria and Alusi along the way, they are circled in red also.
5. The railway track or what I believe is the railway track is marked by a blue line.

I do not know the path of the bus, so I am guessing, however I believe it will most likely follow the lower more level land of the train tracks. If this is the case than it is possible to stop in Victoria or Alusi. I do not wish to stop in these cities, however they probably have a hotel in these cities because they are a little larger. Not all cities have Hotels, this is going to be the art here, to balance the trip and deboard where there is a Hotel. I am leaving early enough so I can hop on the next bus if I make a mistake and have not place to live.

This really requires you get up early and leave, not playing around, you must have lots of room for play. I want to land on the downward side of the mountains, however not into the plains. The cusp of a mountain is a great cultural area to explore.


Ecuador Newsletter and Photos of Peru - Bolivia

Today I am sending a newsletter from Riobamba however most photos are of Peru and Bolivia.

http://www.hobotraveler.com/newsletterhobo173insert.shtml


HOTEL MAID



LOCKING MY CLOSET WITH PADLOCK
I am in Riobamba, Ecuador. I am lucky there is a closet in my room where I can use a long padlock or bike padlock to connect the two handles on the closet. The door is easy to use a knife and open, and the Maid, the Owners and everyone in this nice Hotel has a key to my room. Therefore, I lock the computer and my valuable inside the closet. I leave the passport and money in a bag under my underwear.



NO LIMPIAR
A sign on the handle to not clean my room, hard to get the world to respect privacy, I then went and told the management and all the cleaning ladies, not that it matter, they will still enter. However, I could be lucky; they seem to always find an excuse.

It is best on the handle, so they cannot ignore.


ECUADOR MUSIC



Singers in Restaurant, hard to enter a restaurant without being followed, sometime I pay them to stop.



HOT WATER
I have this permanent magic markers, I have decide to start marking all the water faucets in the world. Maybe a type of civil disobedience, I am getting tired of constantly wondering,
“Which handle is hot?”

I am glad or grateful they even have hot water; you need to wait for a while for the water to travel from the tank to the room though.



PROPANE TANKS
This tool is used by people that have propane tank or torches to cut metal. They use this device to light the torch. I am thinking I should buy and donate to Hostels around the world. This cost one collar and sparks when you squeeze it. Fortunately, most Europeans Smoke cigarettes and it is easy to borrow a lighter, or matches. However, I always want a way to light the stoves in Hostels or Hostals around the planet. If they hung this up by a rope, then the residents would not steal the matches for cigarettes. This only sparks and cannot be used to light cigarettes.


CANADIAN LIBERAL IN ECUADOR

There is a Canadian girl that works for some public radio station in Canada in my Hotel, she is one of the few foreigners in the city.

She is shagging or has what I am 90 percent sure what is an Ecuadorian boyfriends, this normally says a lot for about girl travelers.

She asked me to do a voice over of an interview with a local radio station about the kicking out of the President of Ecuador a few weeks ago. At first I thought about helping, then I thought. this is nuts the normal Canadian young traveler is naive and liberal and not a friend of me or the USA. I try to avoid the young Canadian travelers. as they are a sad lot of people. Lost for an idenity of their own and for sure trying to not be like the USA, however totally like the USA, so a real problem for me as I do not need to listen to their person identity problems.

NGO and Non-profits do not seem to be non-political, actually they are the most political animals on earth making sure they substantiate their existence.

She is nice, however my assessment is she is nuts, and liberally naive about geopolitical problems. Ecuador is in really good shape presently, nobody cares what the politicians fight about, and who would they are just a bunch of power hungry corrupt individuals fighting with each others while they lose their power.


DHL

DHL
DHL CUZCO - DHL FAILS
DHL is the name of a worldwide shipping company.

I am sad today; I cannot find a solution to a problem.

I shipped a package from Cuzco, Peru to Indiana a few days ago; the package has now taken longer than 5 days to arrive at home. It is in Miami, Florida as best I can tell; my parents have written very confusing emails explaining the problem.

BUREAUCRACY
This is one of the words I love and hate, probably on the levels of the world of demagoguery and equivocation. These are some of my favorite words to understand, however in reality these words are worthless.

They are too complicated, and this is what bureaucracy means, there are rules that make the situation too complicated to understand.

DHL FAILS
I paid the big money because I know the rules of shipping home were too complicated for me to understand. I have been studying and experimenting with these rules for eight years.

I must accept that importing or exporting products home is not good business. I paid DHL in Cuzco to ship a package to my home and they failed. It cost me 140 U.S. dollars and now it is not home.

CONSERVATIVE
I use the most expensive and the only way I felt close to 100 percent guaranteed that the package would arrive. I even paid for insurance, and I doubt I will be able to collect.

Bottom line,
I paid lots of money for DHL to ship from Cuzco, Peru to Indiana. They did not perform this job. I did not trust Federal express or UPS at all and would never consider or even thing about using those two companies.

My deduction now is there is only one-way ship something home. I must carry it home on the plane. I have been laughing for years to myself that the only way to do business with Mexico was to go to Mexico and carry the products home, because Mexico is so corrupt you cannot ship out of the country.

Well, maybe this is a great business, when the rules become extremely complicated then one person that wished to learn can make millions. It is like an attorney, they make tons of money doing something that nobody else can do and then want paid when they fail also.

Therefore, I have paid 140 dollars U.S. for DHL to fail to ship a package to my house. This is maybe harsh or a strong opinion, however I have learned to do pay people only for completion, no excuses are acceptable.

I have no better solution, so anywhere to go; I am not going to fly between countries carrying products to guarantee they arrive. I really hoped that DHL could guarantee they ship a product to my home, they have failed.

Therefore, what is my recommendation for taking souvenirs home, carry them with you on the plane, you cannot trust shipping. Only ship home if you do not care if you lose them and the money. Now I do not care I have lost this package, it was just a box full of cotton secret pockets. I would never ship something I could stand to lose. Truthfully, I never carry anything I care about. I suppose my Rhino tooth that I got in my Nepal, is a souvenirs I am carrying that I do not want to lose, I hope I do not lose it before I return home.

For those of you that have shipped and it worked, SO have I, however it should work always, not sometime, the proof is in the percentage.