Problem is, as soon as we began admiring the delicate architecture we were stormed by what seemed like Quito's entire high school population.
The first night we spent in Quito had been rough. Used to a warm, humid climate, the thin and dry air made it difficult to breathe. There's so little oxygen up there they only have one fire station, and we were getting out of breath just climbing up the stairs. So much for being fit and in shape. However, once we got through the first night and began to get acclimated with the altitude, our bodies began to feel a lot less zombie-like, and we were excited to start exploring the city and get immersed into the culture.
"What's it like in America?" they asked.
"What's your favorite color?" another one would shout.
"What's your name?" a third one said.
Evidently, they had been waiting around the plaza for a couple hours hoping an English speaker would pop up. It was their job to interview this so-called English speaker and have them answer a few questions, and then introduce themselves om English. Through this exchange, the students taught us a little bit of Spanish, and I tried out my little knowledge of their language and failed miserably at communicating. However, they all smiled and were very polite, and gave us advice on where to go, pointing us towards a stately cathedral in the center of the city.
So, I guess getting stormed by a huge crowd of Quito's high school students isn't too bad. And it definitely made me feel like some high-end celebrity. However, I think I'm going to work on my accent, and maybe learn a few more words in Spanish other than "Hola, me llamo Sylvie" and "Tu madre es un babuino". Who knows, maybe next time I'll be crowded by a group of elementary school students. And I'm sure "Tu madre es un babuino" probably isn't the best way to introduce myself.
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