Wednesday, July 29, 2009
We love it here and will be returning next June. Duh....we bought an apartment.
What do we love so much about Cuenca? The list is long, but at the top of that list is all the wonderful people we have met here. The main idea of this post it to thank all of our new friends here. You have made this visit wonderful and you are the main reason we are coming back. Without you, Cuenca is just a beautiful city. With you, it will be our home. You know who you are, so I won´t try to name everyone. If I tried to list everyone, I would just screw it up.
Special thanks to all those who encouraged Brenda with all the ¨ïnteresting¨ ideas for improving the apartment. I hope you are around with your checkbooks in June.
See you soon,
Clarke and Brenda
Friday, July 24, 2009
We can´t wait to come back and get started on the next phase of our lives.
No new pics or anything because the Internet in our current rented apt has been down for a couple days and Internet cafes here in Cuenca.
FYI property taxes are $20-30 a YEAR ( $2 - 2.50 a month). No heating bill because none of the houses here have heating or air conditioning.....neither is necessary on the equator in an 8000 foot Andean valley. Water and electric will be less than $30 a month...combined. We won´t need a car and therefor no car expenses. Gotta buy a motorcycle of some kind.
Life is sweet.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
We weren't looking.................
It just sort of happened.
It is in the downtown historic district.
The city shots are views from the balcony. (veranda?)
Perfectly livable right now,
but there is a reason that there are
no pics of the kitchen or 2 bathrooms.
We'll knock out walls
and do the remodel next year.
The deal is not final yet
and may fall through.
But we are prety confident
that it is a done thing....gulp.
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Thursday, July 9, 2009
Saturday, July 4, 2009
The Good: Lots and lots of busses. They go everywhere in town….for 25 cents. If you stay on the same bus you can probably ride it all day for your quarter. All the lines are numbered and there might be 50 different routes (I really don’t know). I have seen Linea #1 and Linea #50 and lots of #’s in between. By the way, apparently some of the city busses go a considerable way out of town.
The Bad: No route map. Truly, there is no route map. I have asked around and there appears to be (yes I am saying it again)….no route map. The sign in the front window tells you about three of the major stops it makes. However, if you are truly a newbie - that is not much help. For instance, most of them say “Universidad” on the front. Well, I think there are 8 universities in Cuenca. Apparently if you are born here, the routes are part of your genetic memory. For newcomers, it can either be exciting, intimidating or frustrating …..but it is never boring!
The Ugly: This isn’t really the “ugly” but more like the “miscellaneous”. The busses don’t give change. So you must have exact change. Apparently there is a shortage of quarters in Cuenca ….. solution is to get a roll of quarters. I got mine from Nancy Watson. She calls them bus tokens. Take some time (days, months, years …..”time” is a relative term) and ride the busses till you know where they go. I have done some of that and it can be interesting. By the way, none of the busses seem to go in any specific direction. If a bus happens to be going east when you get on…that means absolutely nothing.
What is the worst thing that can happen if the bus is NOT going where you want? You can always catch a cab. Costs about $1.50 - $2.00 and there are 4,000 of those in Cuenca.
For a Good Time.....catch #7 going south on Salano (not east on 12deabril). Stay on the bus until it fnishes the loop. Take a box lunch, bottle of water and a book. make sure you start out well befor dark. Enjoy! For more fun, stay on for the other loop of the figure 8 that it does!
Friday, July 3, 2009
She went lap swimming.
She made me climb stairs for 45 minutes. She is stupid. I hate her.
And oh yeah, .......Here is a pic of the guy that made my hat. I thought he used gestures because I can't speak Spanish. Turns out he is mute. An extremeely likable man. I went to his store because it was truly the most humble place I saw selling hats. He makes them all himself. As it turns out....he is pretty famous around here.
Ecuador is located on the equator, so most people mistakenly believe it is hot and humid here. Yes and no. Yes, it can be tropical on the coast and the Amazon jungle regions. Cuenca, however, is located in a valley of the Caja Mountains in the southern part of the Andes where the weather is ‘eternally spring’. June, July, and August is considered their winter season where the weather is still gorgeous but it rains more often. November, December, and January is their ‘Camelot weather’ – so they tell us.
Cuenca has three rivers that flow down from the mountains and through the city on their way to join mother Amazon. Consequently, Cuenca is known for its pure and refreshing drinking water. We enjoy it right from the tap.
La vida es buena! (Life is good!)