Friday was one of the busier days I have had when it comes to travelling around Quito. I started my day relatively early in the morning with the objective of going to the 3D printing kiosk in the Quicentro mall (for my research project), and getting the deposit money back from the chagra costume I rented. It turned out that I was an hour early, since the mall opens at 9:30. I decided to pass the time across the street in Parque Carolina, reading for one of my classes. Afterwards, I went to the costume place and the 3D printing kiosk and got good news that they will probably be able to print the dental implant (after I email them the correct file format).
The next part of my day was my trip to the university for my one class on Fridays. Fortunately I made it on time, but I ended up cutting it very close. After class, I thought about staying for lunch and then going to the dancing lessons (with Ecuabuddies) afterwards. I decided not to because I had to convert the file format for 3D printing and try to find a shoulder rest for the violin I am borrowing (for the talent show performance on Monday afternoon). It turned out that the music department doesn’t rent instruments or accessories, but the man in the office gave me the phone number of a violin student, because she might have something. Sounds like trying to get one may be more trouble than it’s worth, but I really could use a shoulder rest. Next I went home to eat lunch and communicate with others about the afternoon plan.
In the afternoon, I went to Centro Historico and El Panecillo (the Virgin Mary statue in the center of Quito) with my friend Jalsese and the sister of someone we met in the Galapagos. I was running a bit early, so I decided to stop off at Parque El Ejido. Vendors of handmade goods were stationed in the park, which I only thought happened on weekends. One of them had some of the finger puppets, which are cute and make nice gifts. I decided to buy a few and then got talking to the vendor. It was a really nice conversation. She looked to be an indiginous woman, who makes these goods for a living. She was telling me that she travels around Ecuador to sell her goods and has even been to the Dominican Republic. Most people would usually think of the vendors as being really poor, but it sounds like she has a nice little business going.
Afterwards, I headed off to Centro Historico. Bere, the sister of the person we met in the Galapagos, turned out to be really nice. We walked around a bit, viewing a few plazas and going into a few churches. Then we took a taxi up to El Panecillo. It sits on a little hill in the center of the city. From the hill, it is possible to see the entire city, north and south. This site was sacred in the era of the Inca. When the statue was built, it marked the far southern end of the city. Nowadays it marks the center of the city. Legend has it that the back faces the south because it is the poorer part of town. The view was fantastic of the city and the mountains that surround the valley.