Giveaway Winner, A Discount, and First Pics from Ecuador!

Ok, first things first. Congratulations to the winner of the insoles giveaway from Insoles and Beyond, Michelle D! If you were not the lucky winner, don’t worry! Insoles and Beyond has generously offered a 5% discount to all readers with the code TRex5. It’s good for a whole year, which is awesome! I’ll be adding a banner to my page with the code when I get back from South America.

Speaking of South America, Amanda and I arrived in Ecuador late Sunday night, and we spent a full day today on a private tour near Mindo, a small town outside of Quito. I won’t be recapping every second of this trip like I did with Japan, but I’ll try to regularly upload photos to the blog whenever I have WiFi, if for no reason other than to make sure my mom knows I haven’t been kidnapped. She’s very concerned.


First stop – Pululahua. This protected area is actually a dormant volcano crater. Sixty indigenous families inhabit the crater and farm on the land. You can see their houses below!


Amanda and I went ziplining through a cloud forest! Unlike any zipline course I’ve ever done, this one included 12 ziplines and was over an hour and a half long from end to end! Best part? It cost only $20. Take that, Asheville. PS – video of this to come. My WiFi connection isn’t good enough for videos. Oh, and my head isn’t that big. I was wearing a bun and refused to take it down because it would have involved way too much effort.


The view behind us is just some of what we saw while ziplining!


Ecuador is full of stray dogs that wander the streets. All the ones I’ve encountered have been incredibly sweet. This is my main boo Gabriella. I snuck a napkin full of food out of the restaurant for her at lunch.


We went to a butterfly/hummingbird/flower sanctuary in Mindo. These are some of the many beautiful orchids we saw!


On the random swings in the butterfly sanctuary


There is a fascinating outdoor museum associated with the equator. This is not the equator, just an awesome sign.


One foot in the southern hemisphere and one foot in the northern hemisphere! Straddling the world. Ha!


We ate dinner at a rooftop restaurant that had 360 degree views of the city of Quito! Amazing.


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