In the morning, not many busses were running. Schools were cancelled, and about half of the city’s employed actually went to work. The result was a quiet street when I left home to begin walking to school, keeping the possibility open that perhaps I’d be able to catch one of the few busses going down La Gasca. It was a nice morning – cool, but sunny. And with less traffic, you could actually smell something other than car exhaust for once – a hint of pine wafting in from the nearby mountainside; a sweet mysterious scent that I attributed to some type of tropical foliage since it reminded me of vacations in Florida and South Carolina; the wonderful odor of green grass, which is so infrequent a smell here in Quito that it fills me with a desire to lay face-down in a yard and knead handfuls of it like a cat being stroked; and dirt, just straight, natural, earthy dirt – the kind that covers small children who play all day in it, and whose shamelessness in being covered with it is enviable. I nearly purred as the sun warmed me on my walk, and the sheer novelty of mid-week peace in Quito brought to mind spring – spring as experienced in Wisconsin, full of hope and contrasting the weary drabness of late winter days.