Surprise Visitors at our Gate

Yesterday afternoon about 15 riders surprised Joe and I at our gate. There was a parade in San Jacinto the next town down from us and our dear friend Patricia and another long time friend Pablo, decided to bring their crew to our home for a visit.  After a short welcome, we brought out the beer for our dusty travelers and shared a laugh or two.

The most amazing thing besides the beautiful horses and some pretty fancy silver harness sets were the wooden saddles.  In my life, I have never seen a wood saddle and it was amazing how many were form fitted for what looked to be a very comfortable ride.  Our friend Pablo was riding bareback, he is such a wonderful horseman I guess he can do that. I am sad that the photo of him was just too blurry for me to post, I am sure they will be by to visit the next time they are coming by our home. The great thighs are Patricia’s by the way.

Enjoy, just another glimpse of the beauty of Ecuador and our own Manabita people.

Micro Brewed Beer at Agricola Mercado, Montevideo

We spent most of last week in Montevideo, a bit of time for business but mostly for personal. After spending three months there back in early 2017 it was wonderful to spend time in the same area, Buseo, because we knew everything already.  The apartment was a sweet, very comfortable efficiency and get this – it had under floor heating as well as a reverse a/c heat unit.  And the kicker was it was only one block from the Montevideo Shopping mall.  We just loved it.

While there we had plans to find spices and condiments I could not find here in Atlantida as well as sneakers for both Joe and I and some warm clothing.

Our first morning we spend at the Agricola Mall.  And after a complete circuit of the stores, we decided to stop for a cold draft beer at their artisan beer stand.  This is Mastra a local artisan beer company.

I ended up picking the Honey Amber Ale while Joe took the Strong Pale Ale.  Both were cold and very refreshing.  They even sold a few selections in small kegs.

You could also get a little treat but we were looking forward to lunch at Rudy Burger so we passed.

Did not take us long to get refreshed so we could make another attempt at those stores.

It was fun and we would go back and do it again,,,but right now we had more shopping to do.

Diane and Rob Sit Under The Limon Tree

We first met Rob through a comment he made on a post almost a year ago. Monday evening we got to meet both Diane and Rob in person. With their trip to Ecuador in full swing – memories already made in Quito, Salinas, Ballenita and Puerto Lopez –  they are now into the second half of their adventure this week here in San Clemente and points north.

San Clemente 8.20.2013 011In all honesty we got along so well that it was like we had known each other for years. We feel that way about many of the visitors to Ecuador that we have met over the past three years. I guess it is a kind of “like-minded” attitude in the folks that are trying to make the decision to move to our adopted land, and, in particular, our new home town.

Monday evening we spent hours out in the yard, talking and laughing, drinking a few Pilseners and having some munchies. I know that we will be seeing you again next year when you come to visit again. That is the true testament of how Ecuador and it’s beautiful and warm people affect most folks – they come back.

We pray for a wonderful balance of your adventure, a pleasant journey back to Canada and fond memories of your time in Ecuador.

Felices viajes!

Bonfire on the Beach

Saturday night we were invited to something that turned out to be the highlight of our week. Well first keep in mind Joe and I are not goers we are more of the quiet, sit at home, kind of folks but this evening turned out to be wonderful.  Our friends Becky and Keith invited us to a cookout on the beach at their home in San Jacinto. They even had pickup and return service for those of us that do not have vehicles.

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Thank you again Becky and Keith for putting this shindig together.

Pizza Thursdays

Yesterday a group of Expats got together to share some pizza, beer, wine and conversation at Meiers. It was a fun evening and allowed some of the new folks (either visiting or just purchased a place here) to meet a few of us who live here permanently.

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I loved meeting and visiting with all of these folks. Next time we need to do musical chairs and move around to speak to everyone in the group.

Hope you all enjoyed your evening together. See you around town!

Tuesday Deliveries

Tuesday is usually a big day for deliveries on my street.

Jesús our PanMan starts it all off every morning between 7am and 8am. Come rain or shine Jesús drives by on his bike, blowing his whistle bringing fresh pan to my door. I take his visit very personally. He comes to my gate each morning with fresh rolls that he just baked, a smile on his face, happy and content providing a wonderful service for his town. I actually don’t think he knows just how special what he does and how he does it is.

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For .10 cents you get a fresh crusty sometimes even warm roll right from his ovens. If you love what you do, smile when you do it, even whistle if you can, it affects everyone you come in contact with. This man is a shining example of the attitude of the folks in my area. If I have to work I should make the best of it. I should produce the best product and deliver it with a smile. Jesús you make my day! He also takes orders – our friends have ordered loaves of bread and even hot dog rolls for the next day.

Next comes the egg man who also sells toilet paper (papel higiénico), tooth paste – well he has an assortment of bathroom items. Yesterday morning I failed to take a photo but will get one next week and add it to this post.

A little later the Pilsener truck drove by.

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I know it looks pretty bad when you see us getting four cases of beer but in all honesty two of these cases are Jackie’s who dropped them off on her way out of country.

Next Gonzalo dropped by with his one young son. I purchased peanut butter and chopped peanuts, green peppers, tomatoes and two types of onions.

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Next this young vendor and his partner drove by with fresh cheese and butter, along with a variety of other veggies. I purchased 10 oranges for a dollar (in Panama we used to get 100 oranges for $2) not here or at least not out of season!

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This is just the deliveries for Tuesday. I really have little reason to go shopping in Portoviejo or even Charapoto except once a month for items not delivered to my door. I am blessed! Next should be the meat and fish guys.

Party Time with Shelly and Gary

When our friend and blog reader Yusuf came to visit us in San Clemente he arrived with Shelly and Gary. We all sat around on our porch and sipped lemonade and in doing so got to be friends with them all. Shelly and Gary recently completed their vacation home on the beach and we were invited to their first dinner party last evening.

First I must say that these are the most down-to-earth folks that we have had the privileged to meet, no airs, just sweet folks with kind and gentle hearts. Their home is beautiful, spacious, with an excellent view of the Pacific ocean.

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San Clemente 2.24.2013 011Shelly made a sangria that everyone enjoyed and Gary was prepared with an assortment of wines and of course the Ecuadorian staple Pilsener in those big 22 oz bottles. After an appetizer of eggs Diablo Shelly treated us to her version of shrimp ceviche (pretty good for not being a local), it was a big hit.  Gary then christened his new BBQ grill with steaks and shrimp that Shelly had marinated, a grand buffet including an excellent potato salad that I want the recipe for was served. Dessert was a fluffy as a cloud mouse layer cake topped with maracua sauce and chocolate, decadent was the word for that subrosa meal.

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Work continues on the caretaker cottage on the property and another friend David has been hired to fill that position. We are so pleased for both our friends for finding each other.

Several of our Barrio Norte neighbors were in attendance as well as a wonderful Manta family we got to meet along with some of the folks who had been finishing the work on the property (putting down tools and picking up Pilseners is always a good thing). Dinner, drinks and great company…what more could you ask for? Our adventure in Ecuador continues to prove to us that we picked the right country, the right town and have friends that make our lives better just by being our friends.