My guess is most people enter Ecuador by flying to Guayquil, the largest city, or Quito, the capital. I've done both, but the most memorable transportation ride was the mini bus between the two cities.

The mini buses made me feel like a giant.  Most people from Ecuador can easily stand in the mini buses.  Not me -- it wasn't high enough for even my shoulders!  Still, it was an exciting ride out of the mountains.  Not only was the scenery grand, but our driver drove like a maniac.  WE HAD SO MANY NEAR ACCIDENTS!

I had made one mistake with this trip, aside from the maniac.  I took the seven hour mini bus ride the same day I was to fly out.  It never occured to me that we might have engine trouble that could delay my arrival at the airport.  I worried the whole time about this (as if I didn't have enough to worry about. Did I mention a maniac?).  I had good reason to worry, too.  When we stopped along a river to eat at a restaurant for twenty minutes, the mini bus didn't start up again until all the men got out and pushed it. 

We continued our drive through banana groves and rice fields.  Once out of the blue, the mini bus stopped dead on the road.  While the driver and others worked on the engine, I worried ... again. The mini bus started (miraculously) and we continued on our way past the bananas, covered with blue plastic bags to protect them from insects. 

Much to my delight, the bus depot in Guayaquil was right next to the airport.  We made it in time and I could relax.  In fact, I had a three hour wait at the airport because of a flight delay. I guess, not only mini buses were having troubles that day.

Copyright 2011 and 2012 by Phillip Martin All rights reserved.