GringosAbroad Ecuador

My New Wheels

Posted in: Living in Ecuador

marin-bike2With my driving course behind me, it was time to get some wheels.

Of course, without my license, I had to settle for the two-wheeled, self powered version (for now – I can still hear six cylinders calling out to me – more on that later).

When we moved here, I couldn’t bring my bike. Just two bags of luggage each – it just didn’t allow for a mountain bike. Of course, my ’95 Specialized Hard Rock mountain bike had seen better days. It has seen thousands of miles, numerous centuries (100 kilometer days) and just as many spectacular wipe-outs. On that bike, I tore all the skin off my chin just days before starting high school. Not so serious now, but its pretty embarrassing to start a new school with a 2 inch gap of skin on the front of my face.

So after months of window shopping I finally made a decision. Well, actually Dena did. She bought it for me with some of the spoils from her travel writing. Friends are coming next month, and they are going to bring Dena’s bike – It also is a Specialized Hard Rock, but much newer and with hardly any use. (life got hectic for us, and just didn’t have the time – which is why we flipped our life upside down and came here). So we just need one more bike for our daughter and we’ll be fully mobile once again. Can’t wait.

For cost, it was actually a little less cost than the same bike would have been in the States. This was a great surprise for us – virtually everything is more expensive here – at least of the imported kind.

More on the bike shop later.


How else are you supposed to bring a new bike home?



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Meet the Author

Bryan Haines is co-editor of GringosAbroad - Ecuador's largest blog for expats and travelers. He is a travel blogger and content marketer. He is also co-founder of ClickLikeThis (GoPro tutorial blog) and Storyteller Media (content marketing for travel brands). Work with GringosAbroad.

8 comments… add one
  • Jim Cohoon Jul 26, 2011, 6:32 pm

    Hi Bryan,
    We took a bus, the #20 around Cuenca yesterday. It’s looks a little risky for riding in the city. Any opinions on riding around Cuenca on a bicycle?

  • Jim Cohoon Mar 26, 2011, 9:58 am

    Nice ride Bryan!!

  • Doug Dec 23, 2010, 4:37 pm

    Did the bus driver charge you double for taking the bike on the bus? I once saw a man here in Cuenca take a mannequin on the bus, but I think a gringo with a bike on the bus probably generated more stares from the locals than the mannequin. Not that being stared at is anything new for gringos on buses in Cuenca. And….why did you not just ride your new bike home? Oh yeah, you don´t have your license yet!! Enjoy your new wheels.

    • Bryan Haines Dec 24, 2010, 9:31 am

      Still just $0.25 per ride. I was lucky that the bus was almost empty. We couldn't find a cab (correction: no cab would stop for us) on our way home.

      But a bike is still a little less obtrusive than a dead pig. That's the biggest (and grossest) cargo I've ever seen on a city bus. And my bike wasn't dripping fluids on the floor either. But no matter – I was still the feature show on the bus.

  • Judy and Bill Collin Dec 23, 2010, 2:29 pm

    Bryan – Cool bike! Looks like fun! By the way, just a quick question on another subject. Have you heard any comments, or have you experienced any problems using Amazon's ebooks on Kindle in Cuenca? We will be in Cuenca in June and were interested in any problems people may have had with them.



    • Bryan Haines Dec 23, 2010, 6:53 pm

      I don't have a Kindle unit, but we do have the PC version of Amazons Kindle and it works just as it would in Canada/US. If you have an Amazon account already (before you arrive) it shouldn't be a problem. I have heard of problems with opening accounts in the US from here – because they know (based on IP address) that you are located in Ecuador. But we have accounts with dozens of service providers – both business and personal – and have no problems.

  • Dena Haines Dec 23, 2010, 11:01 am

    That bike looks good on you baby!

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