I live in the northern part of Quito near the city park Parque La Carolina. My neighborhood revolves around one big road, Republica del Salvador, that looks different from the rest of Quito. When I try to explain it to people, it sounds like I live in Europe. There are pretty tree lined streets, tons of fancy bakeries and cafes, a bagel shop, sushi places, dance studios, and tall high rises with trendy new apartment buildings. I live on the eighth floor of a brand new apartment building. My neighborhood is safe compared to the rest of Quito because of how many businesses there are here targeted towards upper class Ecuadorians and gringos. This means a LOT of armed guards kicking suspicious people out of the neighborhood. I understand that this is both good and bad, but for me, it means I can walk to get a shwarma at 9 PM and not worry too much.
Main street of my neighborhood: Republica del Salvador
We have a huge Wal Mart style store called Mega Maxi that I try to avoid. Two blocks away is a small local tienda with piles of fresh fruit, dried nuts and fruit, local produce, and everything else you could ever want. I basically only go into Mega Maxi to use the ATM or sometimes for soy milk.
Mounds of fruit at my local tienda
Sacks of dried fruits and nuts. Pine nuts are so cheap here!
My neighborhood has a lot of cute restaurants and cafes with sorbet and gelato. It’s hard not to put on weight just looking at the windows of pastries. We also have specialty stores for cheese, meats, produce, and a couple flower stands. I bought this huge bunch of flowers today for 3 dollars. It’s so nice to always have fresh flowers in the house, a habit I never had before Quito. Most flowers are one dollar or less. It’s fun to buy a bunch of bright, crazy looking flowers and surprise the roommate.
Flowers being sold in the middle of the road
Today was a nice lazy Sunday. I walked to the local tienda, bought some pistachios, cashews, prunes, and dried pineapple to snack on, stopped by the flower stand and bought some fresh flowers, cooked a DELICIOUS quinoa stew, read on my couch, ate some formerly exotic fruits, worked on my Spanish homework, and watched a few episodes of Six Feet Under.
I bought all of these flowers for 3 dollars today!
Breakfast in Bed: Pitahaya, Granadilla, Cashews, Pineapple