So last time you heard from us we were in the airport. So much has happened since then! In Quito our first day was spent hiking, kayaking, and riding a mule in a volcano called Quilotoa. The lake there is a caldera because it erupted once and the top caved in to make a crater type shape. It is 11,000 ft above sea level and the lake is 900ft below the top. AKA breathing is hard.
The lake in the volcano
Kayaking on the lake
Day 2 of Ecuador we walked around Quito and visited different museums, churches, and historical sites. We also visited the Equator!! On the equator we experimented with water, eggs, and our bodies to show the Coriolis effect. That night we went to a "ballet" which entailed folklore dances.
Jenny at the equator
After having so much fun in Quito we got up a 2 a.m. We flew to Cuenca and got picked up by our host families. The first day we slept in the morning and then met with Maria de Lourdes (our go to person here) at the church, got some introductions, and a toured the church. On Friday we visited UDA, which is a local university that a couple of our classes are through, as well as the med school where we met our physiology professor and saw a brain (Jenny liked it, Ariel didn't...). Then we went on a city tour where we saw the largest Cathedral in Ecuador and climbed to the top of it (155 steps!! And once again we couldn't breathe). We also toured the hospital where our practicum will be.
Us and Carlos on top of the Cathedral
Weekends were spent with our host families. Ariel went to a place called Turi, which overlooks the city of Cuenca. It was beautiful! Jenny spent most of the weekend at extended families houses talking and playing games. We all went to Church on Sunday at Verbo, but it was hard to understand much of what was said.
On Monday we were greeted by a Spanish placement exam that left us all feeling like we knew nothing! To our surprise We both made it into the intermediate class. We also got to hang out with the Habeckers who are here in Cuenca for 6 weeks. After that was our first dance class! Dance class was very interesting. Ariel of course had no trouble and compared to the guys Jenny did really well. The guys... well you know. Then we went home for lunch until getting picked up again for physiology. We basically spent 2 hours talking about the syllabus and many, many, bunny trials. The professor is really nice though and his stories are interesting.
Today we had our first actual Spanish class, which went surprisingly well since it was taught completely in Spanish. (We learned that there are 4 ways to say pig). Right now we are waiting to go have lunch with Dr. Moore and then we have our first History class.
We will keep you updated :)