Hola Mounties! This week will be my last blog post. I have had so much fun this semester being able to share my experiences in Ecuador with the Mount community. I had so much fun and learned so many amazing things during my time in Cuenca.
This week, I will be talking about Ecuador in general, some of the best things about it, and how different it is from the United States. One thing about Ecuador that I had never experienced before was walking to school! The school was very close to my host mother’s house; it was only about 4 blocks and took 5-10 minutes to get to. We could walk everywhere and anywhere we needed to go in Cuenca which was very cool. They had very large sidewalks because most everyone walked everywhere as well. We lived very close to everything, so we could walk to the local grocery store or the pharmacy. My roommates and I loved to shop, so we would walk to the markets or get our nails done all the time. Another thing that was very popular in Ecuador was taxis! In the United States, I never use taxi services like regular taxis or uber services. But in Ecuador, we could use their version of Uber and order a taxi from anywhere in the city. We would use this to go to the mall or our favorite restaurant when we didn’t want to walk, and they were always very inexpensive. One time, we took a 20-minute taxi ride out of Cuenca, and it was only about $3.50. It was very interesting for me to be able to experience these different forms of transportation since I am only used to driving myself around in my car.
Cuenca was such a beautiful city and such a beautiful place; you could get a good view from anywhere in the city. I loved all the red roofs that were on top of buildings. The city had so much color and such beautiful plants. I loved going to the center square where there were tons of bushes and trees and a little walk to the flower market. My host mother loved plants as well. She had 3 balconies that were all filled with plants, so we made sure to get her a new flower every time we went to the flower markets. Cuenca was so beautiful, and even when flying over Ecuador you can see its beauty from above. The water is so blue, and you can see the bright, green landscape found in public parks. Bright and vibrant is how I would describe the colors throughout the city. It is like any normal city, but it is so clean, welcoming, and kind to everyone in the city. Within the university, they make sure you get a great view of Cuenca as well. Our classroom was lined with floor-to-ceiling windows, so we always got to see out to the far mountain in Cuenca and what was happening outside. My time in Cuenca was like nothing I have ever experienced before. I am so upset that my time was cut short, but every moment was an experience within itself, and I am so grateful for my time spent there. Thank you for reading my blog entries all semester, and I hope you enjoyed them! Stay safe!