Chordeleg, Ecuador – Sunday is Pig Day
We had a real treat today…a bunch of treats, really. Today, Holly, the incredibly nice lady that we pet-sat for, took us on a trip out of Cuenca to the town of Chordeleg. It was kind of perfect for us because Chordeleg’s claim to fame is that they make jewelry there – in particular, silver filigree jewelry. We knew we HAD to go!
We spent a couple of hours walking around the square checking out jewelry shop after jewelry shop, skipping the places that apparently get their items from China and going straight for the pieces that looked hand-crafted. It was way too much for me to resist, so I now have a pair of silver filigree earrings handmade by the man who sold them to me. They are not what I would typically consider my style (ha! like I have a style!), but they totally looked Ecuadorian so they were the perfect buy. Our new friend Holly helped us negotiate a good price and that’s that! We’re hopeful that Aaron will do a post from the jeweler’s perspective, so stay tuned.
We also happened upon a Womens’ Cooperative selling all sorts of woven goods. Weaving is an Ecuadorian tradition (in fact, Ecuador is where “Panama Hats” are made – we swear it’s true!). We saw these little miniature hats and loved them. When we found out it was a womens’ co-op we were really sold.
Next up we went to a fantastic little orchid market. I will never get used to seeing the incredible variety of orchids out there!
Finally we stopped for lunch on what Holly dubbed Pig Day. Along with church, Sunday seems to be reserved for everyone doing up a pig on a spit. This particular stop was insanely popular. I mean hundreds of locals! You get in line, order and pay. Then into another line where you wait quite a good long time and they give you your food. Then you have to find a seat.
I was on “table duty” while Aaron and Holly got the food. I walked up to one table and pantomimed the equivalant of “hey, can me and my two friends sit in those three empty chairs?” They shook their heads and said “No.” I backed up to survey the options and a man walked up to me and pantomimed “you can have our table, we’re almost done.” I gave a big grin and a “gracias” which didn’t require any pantomime. Moments later Aaron, Holly and HEAPS of delicious Ecuadorian food arrived. As an experience, I can’t even think of something to compare it to. We are SO lucky we had that opportunity. Plus we gorged ourselves on beans, rice, llapachingas (remember those from the parade?), chicken for Aaron, salad for Anner, crispy pig skin (Anner tried, but no like), hominy and possibly a few other things. I feel more worldly for the experience as well as stuffed to the gills.