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It was 6 hours on the bus from Trujillo to the town of Piura, where I arrived around dawn, before the next bus on to the Ecuadorian border and my destination of Loja left around 10am. Trujillo hadn’t felt so hot, but Piura definitely did. It’s a quite remote city in the middle of the desert, but being a Sunday there wasn’t much going on in the early hours that I spent there.

The view from the bus was mainly scrubland, and I definitely didn’t feel like I was missing much by busing through. Leaving Peru took ages, as there was only a single immigration official who worked painstakingly slowly, and I got to pay a small fine for losing the piece of paper that I’d been given when I entered back by Lake Titicaca. Ecuadorian immigration on the other hand was much faster, as I was warmly welcomed in.

Our bus pulled into Loja around 7pm, about 20 hours after I’d left Trujillo, and I was immediately met by my Couchsurfing host Leo. He himself had just got back to the city, as he spends a week every month studying for his PhD in Bogotá. We went out for dinner, and I was saddened to find that Mondongo, a tripe soup, that has been haunting me since Mexico was a big dish in Ecuador too. It was a little different, and called Guata, with it almost looking like a curry instead of just a soup. The innards were chopped a little finer, and so the normal rubbery texture was hidden a bit better.

I went past the bike shop Bicimania, to get my bike looked over, and ended up passing almost a whole morning there. I was in the hands of a seemingly very competent mechanic, who did a fine job with some fixes to make sure that I get to Quito without any issues. Beyond that, I figured that any work I get done here will be vastly cheaper than anything back home.

*I managed to lose my pics from Bicimania, and of Leo.

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