In the last blog post I wrote that I was dizzy and feeling like I was dying on a 20 hour bus ride to Guayaquil, Ecuador. The reason that my housemates and I were travelling to Ecuador was to get our visas renewed.
It’s been six months since I first arrived in Peru. Given that this is the maximum amount of time a foreigner is allowed in the country as a tourist I was uncertain I would be able to return for a while. This filled me with dread. I had almost no money remaining in my bank account and I would have to beg my mother to help me get home. Also…I still need to take my yellow fever shot.
I was sick when arriving in Guayaquil but I found my hostel and slept almost 12 hours. When I woke I was rested and relaxed. The hot and humid heat helped me feel better. The sound of a loud fan blowing across the room also reminded me of my childhood. I found a restaurant that served a delicious fruit yoghurt and then I took a taxi into the CBD to find Adriaan and Nicola (who booked at another guesthouse).
We ate at KFC, checked the markets by a river, took photographs, climbed 444 steps through alleyways (passing rather persistent girls trying to tempt us into what must have been a brothel) to see a lighthouse and a church, and went on a ferris wheel at night to look over the lights of the city.
The next morning I went to park in the shadows of a fantastic statue of Simon Bolivar and a massive church. But the park attracted the tourists for the iguanas wandering around being petted by children and tempted with lettuce leaves.
These iguanas (pronounced iHuanas because G sounds like H) were the biggest posers. They loved the attention. I had one iguana that took a pose as if to climb from the footpath to the lawn. It paused there, waiting as if to say “okay, shoot now!” But then, almost as if it realised the photo could be better, it stepped back onto the footpath, walked closer to me and THEN resumed its same position! It waited until I took the photographs, and left me to it.
I had to leave quickly to find the others and catch our bus back to Peru, nervously waiting to reach the border.
The visa officer gave me another four months on my passport. But I know I will not be given any more extension.