I thought today was going to be a wash when I woke up to rain and cloudy skies, but by noon, the weather cleared up and I headed to lunch at Casa Hood (different from Cafe Hood yesterday). Casa Hood has an assortment of Indian, Middle Eastern, and Thai dishes, so it was perfect for me. I ordered a chai latte (meh), an appetizer of hummus and pita (incredible), and vegetable curry for my main dish (even more incredible). The food was so delicious (and unbelievably inexpensive) that I sat there thinking about how I should stay in Baños another night just so I can eat there again.
That sentiment was confirmed when I reached Luna Runtun, a five star luxury hotel that is perched in the middle of the mountains, overlooking the city of Baños on one side and an erupting volcano on the other. The main highlight of the hotel is the system of four infinity pools that create the illusion that you can swim off into the mountains. A cool traveler trick I learned from Ovi was that if I buy one of the cheaper spa treatments, I would have free access to the pools and facilities for the day. I got a softening treatment done on my hair (avocado, olive oil, and eggs mix) for $20 and spent the rest of the day in the water, amazed that this is real life. I couldn't believe there wasn't anyone else in the pool... I had the whole place to myself. I have seen some extraordinarily beautiful places on this trip, and Luna Runtun is definitely in the top 5.
Watching the volcano erupt was amazing. There weren't clouds, so every fifteen minutes or so, you would see gray smoke billowing from the volcano. It was either too difficult to see in daylight or I was too far away, but I couldn't actually see any lava.
On my walk back to the B&B from the taxi I realized I forgot my hiking boots at the spa. I guess I will just have to go back tomorrow