Ecuador 2015….. Feliz Año Nuevo

| January 23, 2015 | 84 Replies


ecuador 2015

Cuenca Ecuador 2015

Ecuador 2015


Happy New Year everyone. Ecuador 2015 is going to be the best year ever.

Today we are going to talk about making better choices, and some of those choices will not be easy. We will go on a little fantasy ride to a better place.

And then we have a little show and tell. Two new pieces of furniture with pictures and prices….for all you little shop-o-holics.

I also have a little information about some simple hurdles and challenges you will encounter after moving to Ecuador. And a list of a few must have comfort items.

Also look for a few random pictures thrown in like this one below of Missy. No reason, I just like the picture…

And then we will finish off with a little Einstein……


Ecuador 2015

Missy in a Glamour Shot              Ecuador 2015





Making Better Choices This Year


Lets go for a little ride. I want to show you something. Don’t worry, it won’t hurt much.

Do you know what a  “circle of influence”  is?  I’m going to take you there today.

Let me explain using this little role playing fantasy.


Now close your eyes…

I want you to imagine a round room with maybe 50 doors and windows in it. These window and door openings are all around the room. Some are very high up and hard to reach, and they are all different in size and style. My room has a bit of an odd Bohemian style.

There is a chair in the middle of the room. Go ahead and have a seat. Comfortable isn’t it?

It should be, you picked it out a long time ago.


Ecuador 2015

Scary Doors or Good Doors in your Circle of Influence?


This is your “circle of influence” room. This is where you live. And this room is always changing. New doors are added, sometimes the windows are upgraded, everyday it is different. The wall color even changes depending on your mood. This is a very cool room. And it’s all yours.

Hey, look… That door right in front of you has your best friends name on it. And it’s unlocked and wide open.

You look around and notice that all the doors, and all the windows have something written on them. This door says “mom” on it, and your sister has a door, and your spouse has a door.

Now get up. Move around the room. Oh my god, there is a window that says “fearful ignorant bigots”.  And a small door that says “nasty social media groups”. How did those get in here? Thank god they are closed and locked.

Now continue to walk around the room looking at the labels on all of the doors and windows.

Remember, these opening and closing doors and windows represent the influences you let into your life…

Cool, “Loving Nurturing Relationships” has a door.

But on the other side of the room, behind your chair, there are some doors with unpleasant labels on them. Most of these doors are locked. The “Gossip” door is cracked open a bit, and the “Past Regrets” window is unlocked but there is a curtain covering it. Thank goodness. You don’t need to be looking at those past regrets today…

Or do you?

Now go sit down again. Wow, most of the good doors and windows are right in front of you. And most of them are unlocked, some are open. Thank goodness all that bad stuff is not in your direct line of sight.

Who wants to look at that?

Now look down at your chair. You can see I have installed a seat belt. Go ahead and strap yourself in. This is the “going for a ride” part I told you about.

Now hold on. When you hit that red button the lights are going to go out. But don’t worry, I’m right here with you.

Slam, bam, pow, whoosh….

Wow, flashing lights, then dark…your chair is spinning around like a top. You can hear doors opening and closing and windows going up and down.

Finally silence, and the lights come back on…

Your chair has stopped and you are facing in the exact opposite direction from where you were before.  And all those bad doors that were closed and locked are now wide open.

Hows the view?

Don’t bother to look behind you at all those good doors. Most of those are now closed and locked. Your attention should be focused front and center.

So, how do you like the ride so far?

Look at that door directly in front of you… “Fearful, ignorant, racist zealots”.  Yikes, and it is wide open. Don’t worry, remember this is just a ride… I have a door just like that in my room too.

And look at some of those other doors…

“Mean passive aggressive fear monger”…. “Uses religion as a weapon” … “Closed and single minded”… “Hates anyone who doesn’t think like them”…

Pretty scary ride… Go ahead and unbuckle yourself.  I’ve unlocked the double margarita door.

Do you need a hug?

So whats with this crazy stupid ride story….

Well, just recently I went on this ride too, but it was for real. I did it voluntarily hoping to learn a little something about myself and how I cope with things outside of my comfort zone…

I made a deliberate choice to surround myself with anyone and everyone.

My circle of influence became very unstable and unmanageable very quickly. So much so that it started to affect me in a very negative way.

I let people into my home without vetting them properly, I joined social media groups that were full of nasty and unhealthy personalities. I stopped going to the healthy places and started hanging with the unwell. I actually think there was a moment when I became a little depressed.

I was becoming a product of the poor choices I had made for this experiment. Even knowing I had purposely made those choices, it was still having a negative affect on me. And by not nurturing my normal, healthy, circle of friends and family, that bad influence just walked right in and made itself at home.

Within a couple of days my mood started to change, my coping skills became compromised, and my relationships suffered. I was in sort of a toxic daze…

It took me a week to notice it, and then it took me another month to admit to myself that this was a very unhealthy experiment to subject myself to.

But I have made it back safely. And I know what I need to do now.

The title of this little story is, Making Better Choices This Year.

So that is what shall be done. Time to thin out the pack… Time to cut a few ties…

This is my hard learned lesson that I share with you.

Hope you can make better choices this year too.


Another Good Choice


I found a comfortable chair in a really nice antique shop in Cuenca. It is thick leather, it reclines, and it screams out to me every time I walk by it.

“Come and sit down and relax George…”

This is the best piece of furniture that I have purchased in the last 10 years. Classic looking, quality leather, and it is so comfortable. And because I always share prices here, it was super cheap at $350. (Not sure the shop will be getting another like it)

We also just had a locally made bench delivered today that will sit in our entryway. Shoes will go under it and it looks great in this hard to decorate area. Decent quality too.

What do you think?

The bench was also reasonable. Only $105.




Fine Tuning Your First Month Or Two In Ecuador

Lots of little things are a challenge when you move to a foreign country.

Need a haircut. How do you tell the stylist how you want it?

I bring a picture now, otherwise they never cut it short enough…

Go ahead, answer the phone… now what?

Even if you know your greetings, like how to say hello, my name is George, you don’t understand anything they are saying on the other end.

Time to learn a little more Spanish.

At the supermarket, I ask where baking powder is. I actually practice so I can say “Donde Esta el Polvo de Hornear?  But I don’t understand what he is saying back to me….

And if I try looking for items myself, well…

All the sugar is in one section except for powdered sugar. That is on the bottom shelf by the cake mixes… It took me three visits to the market before I finally was able to find it…

I also tried three times to buy corn starch, finally got it right but now what do I do with all the maze flour I have…

I was cleaning out the refrigerator yesterday, and because very few homes have garbage disposals, I went over to the bathroom and flushed the nasty mac and cheese. A bit unconventional but it worked.

I was ordering the lunch special at the local chicken place. I was sure I had spoken clearly. But I ended up with three, 2 item specials, instead of two, 3 item specials.

All you can do is laugh about it… and that’s a lot of beans.

We have a really fancy kitchen faucet here but there is no way to install an aerator on it. So water goes everywhere when the faucet is turned on… I am no longer allowed near the kitchen sink.

All the appliances are labeled in Spanish. I still have not figured out anything but the on and off button for the microwave.

Every two door refrigerator here opens the same way, 95% of them do not have the option to reverse the door swing.

Just being at 8000 feet elevation will make baking a challenge, but then throw in centigrade temps and having to add or subtract liquid and change the cooking times and it become hit and miss when you bake almost anything. I say just add more eggs and sugar and no matter how it turns out, it will at least taste pretty good.

All furniture in Ecuador is brown and orange. We have an artists gallery in our building. I noticed yesterday that all his paintings are brown and orange. My best guess is he paints with those colors so his art will match almost everyones sofa.

Then there are the things here that save my life. These are mostly bad for you but give me so much pleasure. There are times when I am weak and need to be comforted. These are readily available here in Ecuador.

  • Oreo cookies
  • Lattes and Cappuccinos
  • Cream Cheese
  • Cashews from the spice lady on Crespo ($12 a pound)
  • Giant Chocolate bars with peanuts ($4 for a pound bar at Coral)
  • Caramels (so many different types)
  • Granola with yogurt (when all else fails)

Good luck during those first couple months. I have one other secret, and it is the best secret. Ask me in the comment section and I will tell you. After almost a year here, most of my friends don’t know about this “best comfort item” that is readily available at Coral and SuperMaxi…


Missy is Very Popular

Missy is Very Popular




A Happy Ending For Albert

I am a huge fan of Albert Einstein.

He says we all need to widen our circle of compassion… I agree.

This is different than our “circle of influence” that we looked at earlier in the post.

He has written a lot about trying to reach a heightened level of consciousness.

He believed that most people have this feeling of being separate from everyone and everything. Einstein calls it an “optical delusion” of our consciousness.

Our task must be to free ourselves from this delusion by widening our circles of compassion to embrace as much as we can during the short time we are here. That means embracing each other, embracing nature, embracing new thoughts and new ideas, and embracing ourselves.

For years my dream has been to have a four hour lunch with my two heroes. Mr Einstein on one side and Mark Twain on the other.

I would buy lunch of course…

There is also a concept called “the circumference of darkness”.  I will refresh my study and maybe talk about it next time. I think this was also an Einstein concept. Very interesting stuff.



I was going to have a Spanish lesson this time but I really want to get this posted. It’s been almost a month so lets skip it this time… Next time for sure.


Make Good Choices This Year

When I play sports, I prefer to play someone that is a little better than I am. It improves my game. An opponent, or a partner, with more experience and talent will help me get to the next level…

I think the game of life works the same way. Surround yourself with good people, pick your friends wisely, ones with values and talents that you aspire to, and in most cases you will become a better person for it…

We all have choices to make. I hope you make good ones this year. 


“Great minds discuss ideas; Average minds discuss events; Small minds discuss people.”

–Eleanor Roosevelt



Thanks to all 1600 plus who have subscribed to this blog. I love you guys.


If you have a minute and want to see this little rag awarded the “Best Local Blog in Cuenca”, please hit this link and vote for Ecuador George in the Faces and Places Category.


And leave a comment here. I would love to hear about what better choices you are making this year.

Until next time….


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Category: Living in Ecuador, Random Thoughts, Retiring in Ecuador

Comments (84)

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  1. Barbara says:

    What is the secret?

    • Barbara,
      I’m not sure I want to say right away… But it is so good. I will tell tomorrow for sure…

      • I just gave up the secret because I was under such pressure from everyone… Behind the deli counter you will see these 2 foot long Dried Italian Sausage/Salami. These weigh in at just over a pound and are very tasty. They will slice them for you and that salami will last for two weeks. Good on everything or by itself. About $6 a pound… Yummy.

        Sorry if you don’t eat meat. The apples here are really good too…


  2. Beck says:

    Hi George,
    Great post this week as always. Makes us feel like we are back there again. Love the pic of Missy and her friends. I think that beagle is in LOVE <3. What's not to love. Missy is adorable. Wish she could meet my golden grandpuppy, Marlin. Maybe they could be email pals some day. It was so fun to take your magic trip. It reminds me of being a child and when my Dad would take us 3 kids on an imaginary magic carpet ride. We would travel the world on a blanket. You brought me back there and it was a very pleasant memory. Even the scarey parts! Thanks for the trip. Take us to other places if you feel inspired. You are a great story teller.

    Just want to leave you with another Einstein quote:
    'There are two ways to look at life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is.' I have a yellowed piece of paper with that quote on my refrigerator. It reminds me about the beauty of life and the universe and how important it is to focus on those miracles because they are the jewels in the crown of life. Your generous sharing of your thoughts is one of those jewels for us. Thanks so much fr sharing. Best to you, Chad and Missie.

    • Ecuador George says:

      Wow Beck… Thanks for the nice comment and also the great quote by my buddy Albert. If you are ever in the neighborhood, Missy would love to meet Marlin.

      Thanks again,

  3. Suzi Jensen says:

    We are doing it this year!! Living the life. We have sold everything and become senior nomads. We rent furnished and will travel as long as we are able then settle down who knows where. Collecting memories is so much better than collecting all that “stuff” we accumulated. My motto for 2015 is “LESS IS MORE”. Loved this blog entry as always. Thanks George!! Greetings from Gorgona, Panama.

    • Ecuador George says:

      I can feel your excitement in your comment. I am so happy for you two. Looks like you have a blog too. Hope my readers will visit your site. Travel safely…

  4. Donna says:

    What is the secret! I LOVE your blog! I am so glad that I found you!

  5. Donna,
    I am trying to hold out until tomorrow to tell the secret. I can tell you that it is food. Thanks for reading the blog.

  6. Tom Gallagher says:

    Excellent job as usual George, thank you for all the insights.

  7. len says:

    Hey George:
    Loved this month’s thoughts. Would love to hear the secret. We just arrived in Cuenca for 4 months and would love to meet the 3 of you. We are pet sitting for Bailey, Tiffany and Jazzy ( a dog and 2 cats) while here in San Joachin. Let us know where and when is convenient. We’re just a short bus or cab ride away although we are in El Centro almost daily.
    Len and Tricia

    • Len,
      The secret is coming, probably by the end of the day… Wow, I need to insert a secret in all my posts. Chad teaches English in San Joaquin twice a week at the library… Maybe next week we could meet in El Centro. Thanks for the comment.

  8. Kathy says:

    Hi George!!

    GREAT post!!! You got my vote 😉 Good luck!!!

    Luv ya!

  9. Dennis Fahey says:

    Another very good read! I appreciate so much your openness, willingness to share, and the specifics you include. I also laughed out loud at the bit about the paintings coordinating with the furniture! Now that you’ve outfitted your place, it would be very interesting to read posts about how you are spending your time in a “typical” day and about your interactions with locals along the way. Thank you, again, and please continue!

    • Dennis,
      I lock myself in the house… lol
      Actually, I am studying Spanish right now before my class this afternoon. Lots of verbs…

      I will write about a typical day. I will pick an exciting day, because yesterday we just watched movies all day…

      Thanks for the comment… George

  10. Dennis Fahey says:

    Would also welcome the names and addresses of stores from which you’ve bought and ordered things.

  11. Ken Hanigan says:

    I would say the secret is those loving babies of yours. Mine keeps me humble and loved when everything else fails. And centered. I really loved your thoughts about starting out the new year knowing you should make better or good choices. Excellent my friend. Is an absolutely perfect decision for the new year. I think I will follow suite.

    • Ken,
      Thank you for the kind words. I love learning new things. It keeps my mind in good shape and it makes life so much more exciting.

      We love our dog. She really does so much to the mix.


  12. Carol Van Alstine says:

    Hi George,
    I have been enjoying your blog for some time now. You are a wonderful inspiration and a joy to read, I hope to meet you Chad and Missie in 2015. Thank you for beigh who you are – thank you for sharing your life so honestly and openly.

    • Carol,
      That you for the nice comment. You know, by profession I am a building contractor. About three years ago when we decided we wanted to retire in Ecuador I also decided I want to learn how to write. It was one of three or four goals I set for myself. I am always very happy when a reader mentions they like my writing style. Gives me a little push to keep trying. Thank you.

      And have a great New Year…. George

  13. Carol Van Alstine says:

    Thank you for being who you are. Have always known I couldn’t spell but it appears I cannot type either.

    • Carol,
      My Spanish teacher was correcting my paper yesterday. She told me not to worry about all my misspellings, that all that mattered was she could understand what I was saying. George

  14. I like secrets!

    Thank you for the pep talk. It’s amazing how your mood changes just by surrounding yourself with positive influences. One of the reasons I moved to Florida from Alabama was to get away from the people who were dragging me down. A little distance works wonders!

    • Jon,
      Glad you have better people in your life. That does make a huge difference. When I started do that and then started working on myself, looking at what I need to improve, my life got so much better. And it just keep getting better every day. Thanks for reading and commenting Jon.


  15. Mike & Lotis says:

    Hi George,
    One of our favorite but pricey indulgences here is Milo chocolate drink. Loved it in the states. And glad that it is available here. We fill a coffee mug half way with the powder. Add some boiling water just to dissolve. Then microwave it until the chocolate starts rising in the mug and becomes creamy. Then topping it off with hot milk. We love drinking it on our movie nights at home. It’s a real comfort food for us. In addition to this we love that El Vergel SuperMaxi sometimes has Haagen-Dazs Belgian Chocolate Ice Cream.

    • Lannie loeks says:

      What? Is it the Belgian Choclate Chocolate? with the little bits of chocolate in it? If so, that does it…I’m moving.
      PS Found it in Seoul Korea last summer. At a quick stop type store. Shocked. and delighted.

      • Mike & Lotis says:

        Hi Lannie,
        Well, what can I say; get ready to move. It IS the Belgian Chocolate Ice Cream with the little bits of chocolate!!!

  16. Jerry says:


    I’ve been eating organic food for quite a while now. Is organic food available in the stores and is it affordable? Are there any organic farmers close by where I could buy directly from the farmers.

    • Jerry,
      Of course the food in the Mercados are super fantastic and priced very well, but it is anyone’s best guess if they are organic or not. But I have heard that there are places to buy locally grown organic fruits and vegetables. Maybe one of the readers here would know where that is. Thanks for the comment.

  17. Rob Hertzenberg says:

    Hi George. Great blog! I thought you were right on the mark. Have you ever read a novel called “The Book Thief?” Your writing style is very similar to the narrator in that book.

    I cast my vote this morning!

    I’d love to hear what your secret is, too!


    • Rob,
      I have not read that book, but I will look for it. Thanks for voting for the blog. I know its a pain but if I win I am going to have T-Shrits printed so I can give them away to everyone. So your vote might get you a T-Shirt. Thanks… And the secret is in the sausage.


  18. Gerry in Oregon says:

    And Einstein played the violin. My orchestra kids always loved that fact! I’m hoping your secret is the same as mine.

  19. Lannie loeks says:

    Aw come on George. Spill…you said you would. 🙂

    • OK, I will tell the secret before I leave for Spanish class because I won’t be back until much later…

      Behind the deli counter they have Dried Italian Sausage hanging up. It taste so good, no after taste, very dry and not slimy..The will peel the skin off of it for you and slice it up nice and thin. I buy the whole 2 foot long sausage and it goes good on crackers, with cheese, and in salads. It is only about $6 per pound, and that entire sausage is only a bit over one pound…

      That is my secret…


      • Mike & Lotis says:

        Hi George,
        Those dried Italian Sausages are similar to Pepperoni in the States. We slice them thin and long at an angle and then remove the casing and cook them a bit crispy like bacon to liquefy some of the fat away. Then dab them dry with a paper towel to remove more of the dissolved fat. A few small slices go great to spice up any type of sandwich. Add a tiny bit of chopped up green jalapeno to the sandwich to make it even better.

  20. Sheila says:

    Hey George!
    It looks like we are on our way to meeting you, Chad and Missy! We have a contract on our house which, if all goes as planned, will close the end of February. Then we’re off to South Carolina for a couple of months to be near our daughter while we finish our visas. You have been such a valuable source of information on our journey to Ecuador! We can hardly wait to thank you in person very soon.

    • Sheila,
      I remember the days when we were 90, then 60, then 30 days from making the change of our life. These are exciting times. Good for you. Many think about doing this, but only few ever get this chance. Safe travels and see you guys when you get here.

  21. deb says:

    Hi George,

    A very good, thought-provoking post! The Einstein quote about the two ways to live your life is one of my favorites.
    Here are a couple more:
    “I’d rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief.” and
    “Courtesy is owed, respect is earned, love is given.”
    I have a ton of them tacked up in front of me on a bulletin board that I see every day. Too bad I never seem to be able to live up to all of them!!


  22. D.J says:

    Just a question where did you find caramels here in Cuenca. Oh and hope it isn’t as long before your next post.

    • D.J.
      I think Ecuador is the caramel center of the universe. In the candy area they have all flavors. My favorite taste like bananas, but they have a million flavors.

      As for more posts… I try but I need to have a great idea to write about. And great ideas don’t come around as often as I would like. But I will certainly try.

      Thanks for reading and commenting.


  23. George in Quito says:

    Great post as always, George. The circle of influence room caught me off guard. I haven’t seen that one in a while. Yeah, making the right choices. I’ve been learning that a lot in the last two years. This year I clean things up. Thanks for the insights.

    • Hey George in Quito,
      They say that there is no original thought left, that everything has already been written about. So my guess is if I Googled “Circle of Influence Room”, that someone has already written about it. I’m a contractor so a lot of my analogies will fall back onto what I know. I am glad it stirred you a bit.

      Alway good to hear from you George in Quito.

      George in Cuenca…

  24. David Frye says:

    You probably splash the water around the sink yourself so you don’t have to do the dishes… Never a big item in your book. They were ALWAYS “soaking”…
    Chad, time to get wise!

    • Hello old friend,
      It always makes me smile when I get a message from you. Hope all is well with the family.
      You two should come out for a visit. We have a great place and we could go down to the beach for a few days, or maybe into the jungle.

      Let me know the dates you will be in Phoenix this year. Maybe we will be able to stop by…

      Miss you guys…

  25. Glenn says:

    What is the secret?
    I like experiencing Ecuador through your experience. Thank you.

    • Glen,
      The secret is in the salami. I have already written this in a few places. The dry salami that hangs from the ceiling in the deli in Coral and SuperMaxi are really good. Get them to slice it for you. The price is good too.


  26. Lavonne says:


    We’re six-and-a-half years away from blast-off (or becoming retired nomads)), but I look forward to the emails that let me know you’ve posted to your blog.

    Your musings are always rewarding on multiple levels. Today’s provided good food for thought…

    May we all make many good choices in 2015!


    • Lavonne,
      That six years will fly by. If you don’t speak Spanish, get a couple of Spanish coloring books or a package of flashcards, both available at Target. I bought the coloring books from grade 1 – 3. It helped a little, and I have been building on it ever since. Good luck.


  27. Sharon in Cuenca says:

    !George! Great post as always! Lovelovelove your leather(!!) chair!! I know of so many shops that sell plastic/pleather lounge chairs for $600+! And what a handsome bench! For $105??? Where, George? You lead a charmed life! ha!
    Missie is such a happy girl, big smiles, glad you posted her photos! I thought your secret was Nutella and so happy it’s not. Protein is so much healthier. I baked my first batch of Ecuador brownies, let them cool, while salivating, tried to cut them=hard as a rock. I literally used a hammer pounding on a screwdriver!! Laughing til tears flowed! Finally layed a wet paper towel on them, covered then microwaved. Then I had brownies! Thank you for sharing inspiring ‘mind cookies’ by way of your quotes, the music and making it fun to look at our doors and windows.
    Excellent! These are my 2015 quotes: ‘Thoughts become things, think good ones.’ And: ‘Dream Bigger’. George, You! are an inspiration to me! Sharon

    • Sharon,
      Thank you so much. You need to come over and see the place soon. After we bought the essentials, we stopped shopping and now only buy when we come across a gem. We were looking for end tables when we found the chair and bench. Still need the tables.

      I am finding if I am grateful, it comes out when I write. If I am angry or disappointed, that comes out too. I need to stay in a happy place. Who wants to read about disappointment.

      See you next week for sure.

  28. helen says:

    Voted! Good Luck. I absolutely love your blog. Hoping to spend our winters in Ecuador in about 3-4 years.

    You have such a wonderful sense of humour! Reading your blogs in the dead of winter in Canada brings some sunshine into my life. For that I Thank You!!


    • George says:

      I am sort of missing the snow this year. Our California home was up in the mountains so we had the four seasons. A snow day for me was a day off. But we are loving the great weather here for sure. Glad you enjoy reading the blog. Stay warm.


  29. Fiona Patin says:

    George, we look forward to your posts and will be moving to Ecuador in a couple of years (hopefully a visit this year). Love the furniture posts, we are starting to downsize and everything we buy we look at each other and decide whether or not it will come to Ecuador. We save an awful lot of money asking ourselves this question.
    You are awesome and write a great blog.Keep strong.
    Fiona and Dave

    • George says:

      We do the same thing now when we shop. We are on a three year plan here in Ecuador. After 3 years we will either settle down, maybe buy something, or we will go and explore another part of the world. We are being very careful not to buy everything we see. We discuss all big purchases. We would have a lot more money in the bank if we would have started doing this 20 years ago….

      Good luck in your relocation.


  30. Barbara says:

    The best posting for making change in your life’s direction that I have ever read. May I quote you? Others need to hear about the doors.

    • Barbara,
      You may take anything from my site that you feel will help. Please, if you reprint the article, just include a link back to my site. Thanks for the nicest comment.

  31. Brenda P. says:

    Good morning George, and thank you for the wonderful ride and insight. We’re making some positive changes this year, and I want to keep the room of doors and windows in my mind. We’re selling our home, giving away a lot, selling some, and taking a leap. I’m leaving my secure, but negative job, and following my heart. The “where to?” is not 100% figured out yet, but I think there will be an interim, to spend time with my aging parents, before we move out of the country. Some winter trips to scope out places. And some time to learn Spanish. Hearing of your fun in the grocery stores, and experiencing some of it during my travels in Costa Rica last year reminds me that I have a lot to learn. I love your blog, and your attitude. Thanks for showing us your path as we start to follow ours. It helps so much! All the best to you, Chad and Missy.

    • George says:

      My goal with this blog is to help alleviate some of the fears and anxieties that come from the unknown. I hope my stories do that. There is such an emotional and mental challenge when you stop working and then pick up and leave everything that is familiar. By sharing what we are going though it helps me process it and I hope helps everyone else get a glimpse of what they can expect.

      Safe travels


  32. eduardo says:

    excellent and honest writing george

    many fine einstein quotes,
    too bad they made him into a pop science star
    his math and physics were ‘borrowed’ and/or failed in testing,
    but he could expand minds on an individual level when contemplating the grand questions

    happy trails to all in 2015

  33. Chef Dan Turner says:

    Some ideas on the baking problem.
    1. King Author Flour Web Page. Rock solid recipes and people to email about problems.
    2. Check to see if the local mixes are formulated for the altitude. For Quick breads more egg a bit of cornstarch and extra baking powder. I hear that baking soda is banned in Ecuador something to do with drugs. Just up the baking powder and do not worry if it calls for soda. Yeast bread go to the local bakery unless you want to make your own.

    • George says:

      Chef Dan,
      I would love to enroll in a cooking school here in Cuenca. Thanks for the tips. I snuck in a couple boxes of baking soda on our last trip so I always throw a teaspoon into the mix.

      I will check out that website. Thanks again.


  34. Joel Lupro says:

    I resolve in 2015 to become a vegan. This will make it very difficult to move to Equador, but I am doing it to improve my health and contribute to a positive change in the world. I no longer want to contribute to the suffering of animals.

    • Joel,
      I have a lot of friends who are vegan who live here in Ecuador. You know, the vegetables and fruits are so plentiful and tasty here that we have cut back on our meat eating. It is easier and cheaper to eat all those vegetables here. Come on down…


  35. Cassandra says:

    What an awesome storyteller you are. Enjoyed the
    experience/post. Thanks for sharing and I voted!

  36. Paul Acee says:

    Interesting blog post.

    • Ecuador George says:

      Thanks Paul,
      I notice you have a blog also. I have added a clickable link here in case anyone would like to view it. I remember a few weeks reading your blog about your bicycle purchase. I thought it was great information… Good luck and hope you subscribe…

  37. Marie says:

    Feel a bit sad having to accept that I am – most likely – almost at the end of living both as a working nomad (having worked over the years on shorter or longer assignments in over 50 countries on four continents)and as a retiree nomad during the last 11 years. Contrary to most people I have always been scared of being sort of imprisoned (by circumstances) in one country or one place, so moving is easy for me – even though it physically becomes harder and harder. Much more difficult is staying put for a longer period in one place. But this is the? choice I am facing this (or next) year due to age (71) and declining health. I have already moved once this year – two weeks ago – from one place in Sweden to another. And I intend to enjoy this place and all it has to offer for the next 6 months. But not another Swedish winter for me – too long – too cold and not enough cold at the same time: dark, rainy, almost no snow, and far too long – almost half a year. So it will be Spain (I think) the next half a year. But I really miss the tropics: Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Belize, Mexico. I could not stay in any of them for longer time (mostly due to previous (?) unavailability of medications I must use daily), but it looks like that this problem is now resolved in some of Latin American countries, and I would be able to return there. After about 6 months in Spain (giving me time for “complementary” sightseeing in Seville, Lisbon, etc.) I am planning on moving to Ecuador. Though not Cuenca or Quito – too big, too high up, but somewhere on the coast. Wish me luck, please. 🙂

  38. Tomas says:

    I think you hit a buelylse there fellas!

  39. Ecuador George says:

    I do wish you luck. I hope to be doing the Nomad trek for a few years, starting next year I hope. 3 months in Ecuador and then the rest of the year traveling to distant parts of the world. I want to do this before my health starts to decline. I might even find a place that I would want to settle down in once I stop traveling.

    Stay well my friend. Hoping everything works out for you.


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