We moved to Ricaurte, Ecuador

1 Year Anniversary!

EdGar and I are getting our wish granted! We finally have our small refuge for street dogs and had another successful rehoming just last week.  The gentleman at first wanted my husbands best fur friend and shadow Quito.  The one who pretends to hang himself in our bamboo chair when EdGar leaves without him (as proven in the picture on the left) complete with his tongue hanging out for more dramatic effect or howls when he finally decides he wants to eat because he does not like group feeding, (see photo on the right…)we were trying in our best Spanish to explain he needed intervention before we could consider rehoming this drama king.  Now when people come, EdGar hides Quito in the bedroom.

We rehomed  a female twin of Quito instead named Presciosa.  She was just the right fit, older female, who would never be on the streets again with pink bows in her ears.  The adoptee came back with pictures of her toenails painted by his girls and a huge Aloe Vera plant for me.  Success!

 

 

 

Packed to the Gills

IMG_0877

How many suitcase can you fit in a Tracker?

The best laid plans are the most dangerous. We had conversed with Bryan and Becca who were from Denver and were expecting us to pick them up at the Quito Airport at 11pm on Thursday. We got the car into the garage to make sure that everything engine and below were up to snuff… we left in plenty of time to be there for their arrival. We never figured that we would miss one turn off and the Burma road that we needed to take to get back to the main road would be full of cement sewer squares that stuck up from the dirt about 18 inches and the Pilsner beer truck that was in front of us would hit one and buck until it pitched itself on it’s side in the middle of the road! We backed up and hit a few really deep holes in the road but got back to the start of the road without incident. Well, that is not exactly truth, we lost our headlights.

Yes, we only had lights if we were doing about 60 km per hour and going down hill. When we were going uphill we lost the lights. We stopped and tried to wiggle everything in the engine, had a few choice words for the mechanic that we paid $280.00 to for the suspension check, and the tires and engine go over.. but was he within shouting distance, no.

So the moon was bright, our route filled with good road and great street lights and we were lucky enough to get to the airport sans police.

We picked up our newest group of Ecuadorian retiree wannabes and explained the situation. They were good enough to listen and hear us out and decided that we would chance the pull over, all they wanted was to get out and away from the airport and start their journey.  We stuffed all the bags in and put one on top and away we went.

Remember that many of these newbies never have been out of the United States, so to travel at night, your imagination takes over on what you are seeing pass by in the towns you go through.

The Quito Airport is way out of town, and I mean way out of town and is just beginning to have gas stations and stores on the route, it takes a good one and a half hours in no traffic and a lot more in traffic to reach it. We travel down the mountains to the airport and into the mountains when you come back,  so at night you can be in the clouds with a hit and miss view of barrios and small tiendas. You really start thinking, where did I come to and what did I get myself into. I know because I too had these thoughts as we raced through red lights and booked through towns in the cloud cover that engulfed them when we were arriving for our retirement. I saw graffiti and walls and gates and wondered where all the beautiful scenery went that I saw on the blogs and on the internet that promised idilic retirement and stress free living.

We assured them that there are good and bad sections, we assured them that they would learn just like we did and mentioned that we were almost at the end of the trip.

Just then we rounded a circle at the local mall (about 7 kilometers from home),  there were about 8 cars pulled over by the police and we lost our lights again. We too got the high sign by the policeman that was standing next to a car to please pull over, and Juan our partner decided to floor it and pretend like the police man was waving hello.

My heart was in my throat, I immediately got sweaty hands along with a very dry mouth, when Juan said, “This is Ecuador, they will not do anything, they will just tell us to put on our lights.”  Well, I was not going to tell him to go back and prove that statement, so he kept driving and I kept making stomach acid. I spent the time looking in the rear view mirror with the word, “Tranquillo, Denise” from Juan in my ears.

I kept looking at Becca and Bryan wondering if they would ever believe us that we did have all their best interests in mind all week before they arrived, or that we had the car to the mechanic, or that we weren’t some fly by night organization.  In the end it really didn’t matter, they arrived safe and sound as we did with an adventurous beginning and a whopper of a story to tell and retell about their arrival in Ecuador, what more could you ask for?

 

Our adopted daughters through Workaway.info

Paula Da Pena working on her new shirt for our Hot Tin Roof Designs production. We spend days getting the test shirt ready, making sure the hand sewing and the applique is just right. This wonderful girl learned so quickly to sew, then could not wait to get into the designing of stencils and other applique to apply. She produced, shirts, skirts, dresses, beach dresses and tried her hand at fabric art jewelry. She left to continue her traveling, but we stressed there is the family you were given and the family you get to pick,, she is a keeper.
We welcomed her from a web site called http://www.workaway.info it is a site that you can register as a host house and you exchange room and board for 5 hours per day of work. We asked for help learning Spanish and to advance my production in hand made plus size clothing. We got so much more from them than a few hours work, we got laughter, friendship and beautiful personalities that we had trouble letting move on. They stole our hearts, expecially Paula, who stayed the longest.

What's it doing?

Wait,, Wait,, Wait,, I’m not ready!

Anyone who has even met me once knows this picture is the true me.  I am one of those that wants to try everything, sometimes without reading the instructions.  I have been described as a “seat of the pants” sorta person at times.  This picture is the epitome of this description.  I just thought I would share.  I love pushing buttons to see what happens, this photo is the result!  I had been so sick for so long that I thought I would have some fun with the computer and try the photo booth icon on my IMAC.  Enough said.

Love at First Sight…(except for the colors)

FIREPLACE

FIREPLACE

From My Front Window

From My Front Window

Table for 10?

Table for 10?

Kitchen

Kitchen

Garage

Garage

Peach Laundry Room

Peach Laundry Room

Yellow Kitchen/Forest Green Ceiling

Yellow Kitchen/Forest Green Ceiling

Living in a printed AquariumThis is me below the 4 foot fish painting.  I am using my glasses as a comparison of the color,, yes it is a purple frame, the fish frame that is.

Living in a printed AquariumThis is me below the 4 foot fish painting. I am using my glasses as a comparison of the color,, yes it is a purple frame, the fish frame that is.

Love At First Sight  ....Warning

Love At First Sight ….Warning

It Just Gets Better and Better!

It Just Gets Better and Better!

Looks like California to me!

Looks like California to me!

Mañana

Mañana

April 28

The date is set, the countdown has started in earnest.  We are working through the items in the garage, the junk in the kitchen drawers, and the emotions associated with all the items that you kept thinking they would have the same emotional value to the child that you saved them for. Wrongo! They looked at me and said the craziest thing, “Mom, get rid of it or donate it!”. How did I not realize that my memories are not their memories? How was I so blind sided by this comment?

I realized that I am not defined by my treasures, I am defined by the memories they made for me, and that these items should go to make memories for someone else. Sounds so simple, but it is not, life and being a Mom made it another life lesson delivered with childlike honesty and deadly directness but they are adults now.

So, that was my weekly enlightenment for this time period. I thought about it each time that emotion crawled into my conscience and I thought about keeping an item that should find a new home. I cannot say that it gets easier the more you do it. Forty years of memories took up a lot of square footage in my case, but I am putting the memories where they belong now, in my heart and scanned into my terabyte of storage, just in case, cause right now a picture is worth a thousand words. Even if they are just in your head.

Heaven help me!

We have decided….. first we go to Ecuador!

The emotions you go through are teriffic, worry, elation, relief, anticipation.  We are now in the anticipation and it reminds me of when I was a child waiting for Christmas.  I am doing things like marking big black x’s on the calendar each day that goes by.  I am making lists of everyone who will receive good bye, sayonnara letters.

We are planning our escape, letting loose, going to destinations unknown.  Join us for our adventures!