When researching a retirement location, part of what drives some of us to Ecuador is a healthier lifestyle. The mountain air, outside activities, the walking, lack of pre-packaged food, and an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables. Yep, that’s all here!
Perhaps what I didn’t put into the equation was “the celebration factor”. You know the “It’s Tuesday Fiesta”!…or perhaps, “It didn’t rain until 3 o’clock Fiesta”!
This past week was the Centenary or Corpus Christi Celebration. This is described as seven nights of processions and ceremonies to the Sacred Saint with all kinds of sweets followed by fireworks. Ecuador even pushes that fiesta limit to an actual 8 nights.
Down the south wall of the Cathedral and around the central square are tables and booths galore. All of them are heavy with corn biscuits of all kinds; anis cheese and sugar; besides alfajores, empanadas, sweet potato and naranjilla biscuits, coconut candies and an endless amount of unique sweets such as sweet bread apples with milk, cinnamon and egg yolk, pineapple pears, and the beautiful beet raspberries which are decorated with bright paper pieces in the form of stems. It’s definitely a sensory overload to take it all in but in the most delightful way.
After a day or two of sampling the local fare, you’re left craving a vegetable of any kind! The local tourist guidebook states, “From July to September, the city is very quiet.”…..Yeah, right! Wait until Tuesday gets here!
Gotta go find some broccoli!