On Sunday we took our much delayed trip to Giron, about an hour south of Cuenca to see the famous "Chorros de Giron" (Waterfalls of Giron). Cuenca is a beautiful city, but it is a city, and we felt a need to get out into the country for our sanity.
The bus left us off right in town, and the waterfalls are about 5km away, uphill, so the easiest thing to do is to take a taxi truck up to the entrance. We got a truck right away, and we were soon at the entrance to the first waterfall, which is only about a 10 minute walk from the entrance. We hiked up, enjoyed the site, and decided to check out the 2nd falls, as we had plenty of time and energy left in our day. Both hikes were beautiful, with the second one passing thru some dry areas, some wet areas, at one point crossing over the river that leads from the 2nd falls to the 1st, before heading steeply uphill. The girls did a great job, and rewarded themselves with a coke and chips that they snuck up to the top! I'm no botanist, but there are lots of orchids in the trees here, none yet in bloom, but I guess that happens in a few months.
On the way back, we met a women who was picking up the bottles and trash that tourist had thrown out their car window into the pasture for her cars. As we had picked up a couple of bags of garbage at the falls ourselves, we had a nice chat with her. She has two sons who have lived for many years in the states, and she goes to visit them fairly frequently. When she visits, she doesn't dress special, she just goes in her "pollera," the heavily pleated skirt that the indigenous "Cholas" wear here. We had a nice chat, and were lucky to catch the first car down into down, where we made all the right bus connections and got home quickly.
This coming weekend is a long one, so we are heading to the beach!