Monday, June 28, 2010

Se Vende

I forgot to show the finished product. The terrace was a needed addition.

Also it is up for sale. $158K with all window treatments and appliances included. We want to start building asap, that is the reason for the sale.
Until next time............J&D

Sunday, June 27, 2010

To bring or not to bring

Everyone who moves does it their way. Some bring stuff, some do not. If you choose to there are a few MUST DO's to make the process smoother.

Talk to your rep on this end (Ecuador) and run everything by them. Acutally ask them how they want it done, then double check with them. Do not relay on your US agent to do it for you. You might get a surprise if you choose ignorance over diligence.
The paper work involved shipping to Ecuador was far different from our move to Aruba.
If you do your own checking and double checking you will save a ton of headaches, and some green.
Get references for who you use. Remember to be patient and call for updates.

Send us an email if you have questions about what to expect or how the process works from someone who is not trying to sell you anything.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Tres Gatos

And then there was three. Meet Zhucay, ( pronounced "shoekye" ) our newest addition.

Needless to say Kilo and Florin are less than thrilled.
Until next time.................J&D

Odds and Ends...

Here is Marty, Juan and Diane, and Donna and yours truely getting a chance to view the chathedral from a unique spot. Juan, being from Cuenca has many relatives here and that is how we got onto this roof. We also got to spend a good part of the day with Marty, who is heading north on Sunday. Safe travels Marty, we will miss you and look foward to your return. We will try to get a leash law past before your next visit.
We have walked by this place many times but I had my camera so I took a pic. There was a Hudsons in the town I grew up in and this brought back memories of being dragged through the store by my mother, whinning all the way.

This last one is pretty funny. Our neighbors have been looking at this lot and working on finding the owner to make an offer. Well low and behold she showed up to post a sign on the wall that it was for sale with her number. (sitio means lot) The sign had read, Lot for Sale- call *********
Well next door there is a couple houses being built. The builder ran over and crossed out the sign to keep it for himself. Guess what, he forgot to write down the number in his rush to keep it hidden from the buying public.
So if you are looking for a lot in town and wonder why you cannot find one, I would venture to guess this is a story that gets repeated over and over.
Until next time...........................J&D

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Nice change..........

In Aruba gasoline was big bucks. I do not recall exactly, $3/gallon or more, but we would spend $50 or more almost twice a month to fill up the Subaru (it would be at about 1/4 of a tank). Yesterday I filled up for the first time. You read that right $16 bucks. At the service station, I say that because that is what you get, they pump your fuel, ask you if you have any trash in your vehicle you want to throw out (the man holds up a small trash can as he asks), offers some refreshments, then sends you on your way after payment. It was the first time I can remember smiling at a gas station in a while, other than the first time I got gas, or hitting a $25 winner on a scratch ticket, even finding a buyer for us for beer in the pre-legal years. It was a nice change. I have been told to only go to gas stations where you see the taxi cabs or the commercial trucks filling up so that is what we will do.

We also took our first trip up the Cajas for a bit. It was nice, but boy I am not used to the chill in that mountain air. I guess that is what the canilaso is for. We also saw our first llama live and in person on the side of the road. It kind of looked like the Merrill Lynch bull the way it stood on a rocky ledge. I was a nice day and I like to be able to drive again. I missed driving a standard but did not know it until I did it again. I forgot the camera so we will have to be better about that. We will be heading to Ingapirca soon and will make sure that we have it for that trip.

Until next time............................J&D

Monday, June 21, 2010

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

What.............a truck?

Yup. After looking around at the many dealers here in Cuenca, we bought one. This is a Chevy Luv 4x4 diesel. We look forward to many adventures, seeing the surroundings of our new home and beyond.
It drives very nicely and the seating (even the back) is quite comfortable. It is also made in Ecuador. Thanks to Juan and Diane for their help with this process.
It feels good knowing we can jump in and go even though we do not know where, just knowing we can is nice.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Traditional Food and Home Cooking

We had been to the co-op the other day picking up the pieces to some really good eats, and after being inspired by some good home cooking last night Donna went to work this am to make
Aji de tomate de arbol (tree tomato hot sauce), Chaulafan de pollo (Ecuadorian chicken fried rice), and Moto pillo (hominy with eggs).
Shortly after we got up Donna realized that the 5lb chicken we bought, we were unable to cook. I rushed up to Coral and bought this monster stock pot (don't ask about the price) so we could get busy.
Here is the finished Tree Tomato hot sauce. You find this sitting ring side on most tables you will go to where the main fair is Ecuadorian. It is hotter than what you get in town but that is what we like.
This plate has a nice fillet of Tilapia with onions (sorry Charlie) and the Moto pillo with some queso fresco and diced tomato......yum (that was breakfast)

Then the work started. Made a stock with the chicken, then used the stock for the rice. Here are the vegetables, rasins, eggs, and chicken waiting patiently to get into the pot.

And finally the finished product. Wow was it good. I had mentioned great rice in an earlier post but this stomped all over that. A bit of the freshly made hot sauce and a glass of vino and it was better than any place I have been out to eat at. Yes some of you (you know who) will be, when our table arrives, enjoying fare like this one day soon.

Donna did a great job. I guess I should do some dishes..............Ciao

The recipes came form this link.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The Cats Meow

Yet again Pepe amazes. This, I would venture to guess is his first cat specific piece. Kilo and Florin are still a bit intimidated by this but I have caught them hanging on to the poles.
I must say if you do not have anything Pepe has created you won't go wrong if you commission him.
Until next time.......................J&D

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Great Neighbors

Yesterday in the afternoon our buzzer rang. There was a man, his wife, and their 2 kids.
He said hello in spanish and a few other things then said something I did not get.
"No Entiendo" I answered. In broken english he said there was to be a street party for the neighborhood so everyone could meet and socialize. They collected $5 bucks for food etc.. and said follow the music around 8 pm.
Well it was a blast. Of course being Americans we were early 8 really meant 8:30 (we left the house at 7 and strolled the streets for the first time looking at the whole area). They had 3 different live music acts (while we were there), tons of food, and of course plenty of drink. I was amazed at the whole thing. Whenever someone came they went through the whole crowd saying hello. Throughout the night people brought food and beverages to you as you sat and enjoyed the music.
There was a string of "elderly" women in front of us and they are by no means out of action. Dancing, shots of rum, a few guest appearances at the mic to sing, some dancing, they enjoyed the party. As a matter of fact we left before they did
(at 12:45 am). The music and belly laughs lasted well into the wee hours.
We really had fun. This is really a great street with alot of warm and nice people.
Wish we had the camera. No place have we lived before, where just for the purpose of getting together to meet, was there a party (among neighbors). Yea the odd holiday where every ones separate parties merged but this was just a spur of the moment, meet your neighbors.
We also found out that many in the "hood" have spent some time in the U.S. and speak a little english. Newark, Dallas, New York.
Well get out there and meet your neighbors, take a nap if you want to see the end of the party though.
Until next time.....................J&D

Friday, June 4, 2010

Is this really happening?

Yup we found a great spot, 13 minute drive from Calle Larga.
These will be our new views from the front and back of the house (the side views are just as nice). Cannot wait to get started.......I think I feel a bit faint.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A True Craftsman

As we mentioned earlier we had some furniture custom made. Well we got 2 pieces last night, a bed and a desk.
We gave Pepe a picture of a bed style we liked and said we would like drawers under it and he created a piece of art (the bottom pic is the one we gave him, the middle is what he made from that one photo). Now if we could only get our container here we could sleep on it.
The desk I only described and he made a vision a reality. The guy is really a master and you would not go wrong acquiring his services. I think his prices compare with any quality furniture but it is all one of a kind. He is also building the cats a piece of furniture, we will show you that when it arrives later this week.

Well off to catch the bus so until next time.............J&D