Hey Everyone!

Today we learned about the rules and regulations of the city and how to stay safe while traveling. We now know that street food is not the safest to eat and that tap water is not to drink! Around 10 a.m we took the bus to the city center to start our scavenger hunt. We split up into groups and made sure we had at least one Spanish speaker with us and a GGL. It was a great experience to bond with each other and the local people in Riobamba were really welcoming and friendly. Some of us were able to practice our Spanish, too. During the hunt, we learned about the important history, dates, and people of Ecuador. After the scavenger hunt, we all met in Plaza Roja where we had a trivia game about the history of Riobamba (shout out to the winners Rashad, Debbie, Val, Shivani, Nickole, and Kate!). [Jared] I really loved how everyone really took care of me and looked out for me today. It was nice to feel the support and love from my fellow Glimpsers. I really appreciate the care.

While we were eating our Chola pastries, we were approached by a local newspaper photographer who took our group picture for the local news so keep your eyes peeled parents, we might be famous!

We also all want to give a warm welcome to brave Kiyomi who joined us today after catching a later flight than the rest of the group and traveling on her own! She came with a great attitude and a lot of positivity and we are so excited to have her with us.

We had a delicious lunch of broccoli soup, rice, chicken, coleslaw, and cinnamon apple dessert. After lunch, we had an English tutoring seminar about what to expect for the upcoming classes we will be leading next week. Even though it was very informational, we are excited to be working with the indigenous students and using our teaching skills with the kids.

We went to the local restaurant Nativa to learn how to make empanadas. We all encouraged each other to do our best and give each other constructive tips about proper prepping instructions. While we were waiting for the empanadas to cook we (leaders of the day) played a really fun energizer game called pterodactyl, where everyone had to withstand laughing, it was challenging and hilarious!

Cesar, the restaurant owner, then showed us a plethora of native fruit that we got to try including; pitahaya, pepina dulce, star fruit, grenadilla, uvillas, and taxo. For dinner we ate ceviche with popcorn, corn nuts, plantain chips, and rice. It was delicious! Chef Cesar made us feel very welcome. [Rashad] I really liked how Cesar (from Nativa restaurant) exposed us all to the traditional plates of Ecuador. He was really excited to share his recipes with us and teach the entire group how to make empanadas.

Day 2 Group Photo in front of Nativa

Finally, we ate our homemade empanadas (cheese, chicken, beef, and mixed! After dinner, we had the pleasure of singing Happy Birthday to Emily on her special day, we even had some cake!

Our nightly meeting was really insightful because we were able to reflect on our day about the history of Riobamba and the connections to our own history in the United States. Our group discussion were awesome, we were really impressed by what our peers had to say. We set the bar suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuper high for the next leaders of the day. We look forward to tomorrow’s adventure!

It’s already really fun and we feel like it’s going to be uphill from here! J

Big Love to everyone here,

Jared & Rashad.

From Jared: Hey Mom and Dad, How are you doing? Are you still obsessed with the Kiki challenge?

From Rashad: Mel, I miss you so much. Highkey always on my mind. See you soon. Mama, I miss you so much. Thank you for existing. Love you so much.