Welcome to our blog, which has pictures and news of our travels! If you like a picture, be sure to click on it to see a larger version.

Thursday, December 7, 2006

Death in the Afternoon

Wow! OK, first things first: They have wonderful food at the bullfights. Susan got TWO bowls of Ceviche de Camaron...I got one of these sliced roasted pork sandwiches...and a 'bull plate' which was Serrano Ham, other meats, cheeses (MMMmmm) and some fresh mozzarella and dried tomato....OH! Wow.

I just couldn't wait until we got inside to start.

We got down to our seats a little early and got to people-watch for a while...we drank some beer, drank some wine...ate some food. It's like going to a baseball game, you know?! The baseball game is fine and all, but if you really wanted to watch the game, you'd just watch it on TV. This is an EVENT, and people get all fancied up for it. Like these two characters that sat behind us. There are also some funny pictures of the two loud ladies that sat behind us, yelling in the rain...but that's another part of the story.

We were all there (in part) to see 'El Fandi!' He was the headliner, and also the best matador of the day. Here's a picture of him with his first bull. Now, on Monday I saw the best bullfight I'd ever seen. It was Susan's first, and she really enjoyed it. El Fandi topped that. Susan said she was so glad that we'd gone on Monday, because SHE could see a huge difference. I took video, I took pictures...I filled two of the chips in the camera and used up one battery. I got carried away. Fantastic stuff. About halfway through, it started to rain. And I mean rain.

No rain delay here... things kept right on going. Everyone in the stands scrambled for their ponchos, while the ladies selling plastic bags and sheets raced through the stands yelling "Plastico! Plastico!"

The water all drained down the concrete seats, down one row to the next, so you'd better be sure that you weren't just WEARING your poncho, you'd better be SITTING on it, too. EVERYTHING got wet. Our shoes were gushing water when we stepped, although our heads were dry (check out Susan's cool hat!) and we had dry sweaters in our backpack, which is semi-waterproof.

So where does all that water go? Downhill, of course. Down one persons leg, onto their shoe, onto the bleacher seat, down the next guy's pants (he's too drunk to get up), down his seat...until finally it gets...down to the ring. Where it stays. You can see the water all around the edges of the ring, but it kept filling up until the entire thing was underwater. The bulls were slipping, the matadors were slipping...it was pretty dicy there for a while.

You know where this is going, don't you?

"Tom, show us some pictures of how bad it got." That's what you're saying, right?

The screen kept getting wet and I'd have to wipe it off on my wet shirt. Then when the rain was too much, I'd hold it down lower (taking this picture accidentally) but then the water would run down my sleeve and flood the camera.

The camera started opening and closing, the flash was randomly going off...it would be on when the power switch said 'off' and off when it said 'on.' Here is the last picture. Ominous looking, isn't it?!

The camera was dead. And IT wasn't going to end up as tacos the next day like the bulls.

Well, it was worth it. We said that. It hurt, but we meant it. We squished our way back home, got some milk and chocolate with cinnamon to drink our sorrows away and see what we could do to dry out the camera and rescue the pictures.

When we came in the apartment, Sharon and Chris were there already, with the patio doors open, music on and drinks in hand. We warmed up ourselves, warmed up a little pan dulce in the toaster oven...and then put the camera in, too. When I took it out it was like a hot potato, but it cooled off, I blew in it, shook it...and it worked. Briefly.

I unloaded all the pictures onto their computer and went and had a drink. And another. And, well, after a while I wasn't so worried about it. I tried taking a couple of pictures and they were foggy, at best. We drank some more. And then we ate. Tasty food, tasty drinks, lots of conversation, and it was another night in Quito.

We're off now to go do some laundry and get some goodies for dinner, because we're doin' it all again tonight. Later on I'll see about going through some of the pictures, but NOW we're going to get some breakfast and wander about.

See you!

No comments: