Sunrise, Sunset

sunset michigan

Sunset, East Lansing, Michigan

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I’ve Gone to the Mountains

I made it! After a full 18 hours of travel, I arrived at my hostel in Quito late Friday night. Today I settle in with my host family and start two weeks of Spanish classes. The last time I was in a classroom setting was 2005, so it could be a shock to my system. Also, I really want to learn Spanish but I have to get over my conviction that I’m terrible at languages. Wish me luck!

Quito is high up in the Andes Mountains, 9,350 feet above sea level. I was just in Michigan, which is 800 feet above sea level. That’s a huge change, and I was worried about how altitude sickness would affect me, but luckily it’s just been headaches, which I get a lot of anyway. I took it easy on Saturday–well, I walked 3 miles to see the city, but then I drank a lot of water and napped. That seems to have helped a lot.

I wanted to give y’all a heads-up that an interview I did for a British podcast called Getting Better Acquainted will air on Wednesday. I talk about the first part of my trip, the ups and downs, and being a conscientious traveler. More details when I have ’em!

Finally, I left this:

We've had at least a foot of snow on the ground for over a month, and days so cold the schools close because kids waiting for their bus might get frostbite

We’ve had at least a foot of snow on the ground for over a month, and days so cold the schools close because kids waiting for their bus might get frostbite

for this:

The view from my window in the hostel in Quito. There is no snow.

The view from my window in the hostel in Quito.

Sorry not sorry, as the kids say.

Have Yourself an Icy Little Christmas

On Saturday night, we had an ice storm in mid-Michigan. The next day, everything was covered in ice. Every twig, every blade of grass, was perfectly encased in frozen water. A lot of people lost power, but we were fortunate, so I walked around taking some pictures and then retreated to the warm house to decorate a Christmas tree. I hope everyone was able to stay warm and gets their power back soon. In the meantime, some photos from after the storm:

Backyard

Backyard

michigan winter christmas ice

Silent neighborhood

Silent neighborhood

Every blade of grass

Every blade of grass

The park near my house

The park near my house

Low branches on the road

Low branches on the road

michigan winter christmas ice

michigan winter christmas ice

An icy Christmas

An icy Christmas