Squeezing the most out of life | An Aussie and a Colombian living life with a wandering spirit. Eight years together & over 60 countries up our sleeves, we're sharing the love |

A new culture, a new continent: landing in Latin America

Five years ago I took a couple of months out to do a whirlwind trip to South America. Mainly I had dreamed of seeing the animals on Galapagos Islands and hiking in the high altitude mountains of the Andes. Single after an eight year relationship, I wanted to travel with other people, still have plenty of time for solo moments and not sweat too much on my lack of Spanish. I signed up for a Geckos Adventure and it turned out to be the beginning of my love affair with Latin America. These are my past emails and images from that journey. Kris

I’ve made it to Quito in Ecuador after almost two days travelling; lots of unpredicted delays via New Zealand and two extra plane changes from Chile, I’m finally in South America. What a spin out after so much pre-trip anticipation!

I arrived about 1am local time to a crazy packed airport, found my sweet little transfer guy and jumped in the car. Everything really sunk in then and my first effective words in Spanish translated to “Excuse me Senor, can you please turn that music up LOUD?” It worked, and we screamed from the airport Latin style, listening to some hyper Bossa Nova Reggae. It was then I realised that I am totally free and I have an amazing adventure ahead of me.

Some first observations on the Latin vibe: Everyone is cute and short and I feel like a giant. The coffee is fantastic – thank god. Spanish sounds like the most beautiful language in the world and it’s surprisingly coming back to me ( I know how to order food with a Barcelona/Aussie accent anyway ). It’s a very poor community in Quito, but there is a confident sophistication about the people. The music pouring out of every little cafe sounds great; everything from Reggae to funked up Latin to classical. It’s like nowhere I’ve ever been before and I already know I’m going to love it.

Anyway, I’ve got my head around being away and think it’s just what the good doctor ordered. I won’t be able to email for a while as I’m flying to Galapagos Islands early in the morning for a dose of extreme nature. This part of my journey is what I am most looking forward to; unique animals like giant turtles and blue footed boobie birds await me!

Kris

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