I took this week’s photo under a flyover, where new Quito meets the Centro Historico near Marin bus terminal
Quito’s Centro Historico, or old centre is rather beautiful; there are vast plazas flanked by grand façades, carved stone doorways and enough ornate churches to keep even me happy.
And yet a block away, the architecture, the cleanliness and the atmosphere change in what is known as Quito Nuevo.
I took this photo through the window of a moving bus and although it lacks in both composition and style, I wanted to share it with you because I believe it gives a flavour of one side of Ecuador’s capital.
Stalls such as these are always filled with stock – there are rucksacks on the ground because there is not enough space to hang them all up and out of the dirt.
It is common in Quito to see several of the same type of shop, or many vendors selling the same wares, all grouped together. I don’t know why they do this as I would have thought that it creates competition, yet the scene in this photo is a typical sight.
Street vendors use every available space in Quito, to sell food, headphones, clothes pegs, silver spoons and all manner of things. Quiteños in sun hats stand in the middle of the road at traffic-choked junctions selling bottled drinks, newspapers and lottery tickets.
The Centro Historico is certainly more attractive than grubby corners like this, yet it is only a few blocks of a vast city, and the scene in this photo is the daily reality for many of Quito’s inhabitants.