Parques amplios - spacious parks of Quito welcome the family-oriented - each with a distinct theme that features a unique adventure. Tourists always need caution, especially at night. I don't look like a tourist, but theft doesn't distinguish if you carry something they want visibly.
Small children who get too close pick pockets expertly. Yet most Quiteno children would never do that. My apartment faces a playground, and I enjoy hearing the laughter.
As a child, my farm home provided a petting zoo and park for me, as I bottle-fed my lamb and played with my baby goats, cradling them in my arms after feeding the chickens. As I grew older, I even milked the goats.
I left the cows to Dad... his choice. I think he thought I might get kicked. He wouldn't even let me have a horse because I might get thrown off, but he made sure I got my share of thrills, and as most kids, I did a lot of no-no's.
In the city, I would go with relatives to a park with rolling hills where we rolled downhill on the grass squealing with laughter... my definition of "on a roll"... impossible for children to do now without the risk of becoming poked by needles or kidnapped or worse.
In Quito because of poverty, thieves lurk just about anywhere. They tell me not to stop to talk to strangers who might seem to innocently ask me to read something for them. They say a powder drug is used to blow in your face which turns you into their puppet... haven't seen that happen yet but have heard about it happening.
I rarely talk to strangers on the street. Those beautiful people I've met have been employees of restaurants and hostels or stores, or maybe someone at church or my neighbors.
Nonetheless, in parques de Quito - with a theme even - recreation bubbles high in the daytime. I enjoy them every time I go especially on weekends.
For the most thrills for children, the amusement park, Volqano, at the foot of the Teleferiqo - with no entrance fee - would be the place.
quito-colonial.com copyright 2008 All Rights Reserved.