Monday, March 4, 2013

Behind Closed Doors

I remember when I first showed you photos of my first apartment in Cotacachi, you were amazed at how huge the back yard was.  So was I when I first saw it.  Since then I've had comments from people that centered around the size of various spaces, especially those things you find behind all the tiendas and even the apartments.  I recently took a few photos of some examples of how it sometimes works here.

First, a few of my original photos from my first home.

From the top: the view from near my back door looking out to the back of the property.  The next one is after I turn right from where I started and you look down the workroom and common room (basically a party room).  Finally is the rest of the yard from the end of the workroom building to the end of the property.

In the last photo you can see the buildings the face the next side street over from where I was.  What you don't see are the building to the right of the wall and the extra building in the second picture.  There are tiendas and homes along there that either don't have yards at all or have smaller ones that are between the buildings and this wall.

Where you see the tree overhanging the wall on the right side of the last photo is the place where the neighbors raised fighting cocks.  You may recall there were 12 of them at all times.  That space is between the wall and the back of their house.

All of this is in the central portion of this block.  Blocks here are generally much larger than the ones we're accustomed to in the states.  I wish I was good with spacial representation but I couldn't begin to tell you how many yards it is from one street to the next, even when I think of it in terms of the 100 yards of a football field, but I know they're larger.

Back to the main concept of the post.  Here are some shots of what's behind some of the homes and stores along the streets of Cotacachi.

Here's a restaurant behind a little store or home.
This store is in front of...
...this home.  As with my current house, the only windows for this house face the courtyard.  It is in the middle of the block and there are other houses and/or businesses on all sides of it except for this entrance from the street.

This is the business on the other side of the house above.  It's a little bakery that has already sold out of most of its bread for the day.  There are still some lovely sweets left, though.

This isn't an example of anything in front of or behind anything else--it's just a picture I wanted to share and this seemed like as good a place as any to share it since I took it the same day as the others.  This is a miniature restaurant.  It's almost a street vendor's shop except that it requires a little more space and would be hard to set up and take down every day.  The blue thing in the doorway is a deep fryer and right now she's cooking french fries (papas fritas) and by the looks of the condiments she has on the table, she may be making salchi papas for the school kids.  That's a small plastic bag with fries and fried hot dogs on top of them, generally garnished with the Ecuadorian equivalent of ketchup and some mayo.  I've never developed a taste for the hot dogs but the fries are generally quite good and sometimes exceptional.

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