Welcome Ecuador! - Jan 22, 2009

Border crossings are about - Patience - Patience - Patience...
We got to the Ecuador Border in Tulcan in the afternoon, thinking it could be a quick crossing and a short drive to our next camp.
But it never works that way. Two hours line up to get our Passport stamped. The immigration officer was in no hurry to get things done. While I waited in line, Angela went to take care of our bike papers. Hoping we could get them done at the same time, (normally passport first, then bikes) The good thing about a women, the guys like to flirt! So little flirting get you a long way with Immigration...
She got her bike papers done ( one hour!) Meanwhile I was still waiting in line - but without my passport!!! Angela had my passport to try to get our bikes in together. The line started to move and they let me in the immigration room... but still no sign of Angela, meant I didn't have my passport! I couldn't loose my spot in line to find Angela, so I was getting nervous that my time would come and not have my passport in hand.
Finally Angela was outside the door. Again, a little sweet talks with the guard got her in. We waited another 1/2 hour to get our stamps. But now my bike papers still needed to be done. Back to the office. The man was even in less of a hurry then the immigration officer. Telling us all kinds of uninteresting stories, we just wanted to get it done and leave.
Three ladies come in the office to pay some taxes on a TV they had purchased in Colombia - ( high taxes need to be paid when purchasing goods from Colombia and brought back to Ecuador) A major argument started with the 3 ladies and the Tax man when the ladies didn't want to pay their taxes and started to brag the man for a cheaper price. Angela and I just sat there watching the hole scene and just wanted to get our papers done and get out of there. Time was passing by, now 4:30 pm.
The man finally put his attention to us, still moving at turtle speed, typing on his keyboard one finger at a time. Impatience building in our minds, finally the man says " Listo"
We stepped out in a hurry, put on our helmets, and drove off into the unknown of Ecuador....

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