Ecuador

Here we are, just 76 days from setting off on the Inca Trail, and we have successfully completed our first major tests of hiking at altitude. The results were mostly positive, but also quite sobering. I think at the moment we both feel that we can probably do this, but it is going to be, pardon the pun, an uphill struggle. We began this new phase just four days ago on Friday. For me, the day did not start auspiciously....

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It is true that there are some unusual things to get used to when you choose to live in another country. Speaking a different language is something that is high on most people’s list in this regard, but I have found myself noticing some of the more subtle and interesting differences. Here in Ecuador for example, consider something as basic as food. Of course there is an adjustment to be made in the types of food available here, and this...

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I have to confess, I am a foodie. Although not a chef by any means, I love to cook, and I love to sample local dishes whenever we travel. So Ecuador is a perfect place for me to indulge in this weakness. Not only do I have access to incredibly fresh and healthy produce, meats, and seafood to use in my own kitchen, but there is also a wealth of local and traditional meals to experience. Best of all, even...

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Time to take a break from the Exploring Ecuador series of just looking at places to live, and take a look at places to enjoy life in Ecuador. If you like walking around in the great outdoors, then Salinas has a great place for you to get your hike on. The picture above shows the westernmost point of Ecuador (excluding the Galapagos), a national park called La Puntilla de Santa Elena. Opened in October of 2008, La Puntilla is a...

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I was talking to someone in the States the other day about life in Ecuador, and he asked the question an expat hears fairly often – “Don’t you get homesick?” This is not a trivial question, and one that anyone thinking of moving to another country should consider. “Homesickness” has been recognized since ancient times, with references in the Old Testament of the Bible, and Homer’s Odyssey. Even Hippocrates recognized it as a valid complaint, suspecting it had to do...

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Who would have thought that moving to Ecuador would make Rita and me TV stars? Not that we are exactly the Kardashians of the southern hemisphere, but let me tell you about an interesting little event that happened at the end of last year. As happens with the most interesting things in life, this all started with a chain of small events. The first link in this particular chain started at the end of September, 2016. This humble blog was...

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Health care is always an important topic for those considering the expat life. In Ecuador you have several options, and which one works best for you is something you should think about very carefully. You can’t have too much information making this decision, so here is a real-life example from our second experience with surgery in Ecuador, this time in January 2017, when my wife needed to get her gall bladder removed. First, let’s do a quick review of the...

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Welcome to the next stop in the Exploring Ecuador series - the beach resorts of Salinas and Chipipe, on the Santa Elena peninsula. The Santa Elena peninsula is one of the two largest concentrations of expats on the coast, the other being the Manta region. As such, many people are interested in what is is like to live there. It is a large area, with several different types of lifestyles possible, so I will be breaking it into sections to discuss....

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Welcome to the second in a series of features on the many different choices available to you if you are thinking of living in Ecuador. Any of the places I will cover are great places to visit, but the goal is to provide you with enough information to decide if this is a place you would feel comfortable calling home. Our first stop was Machala, a modern city on the southern coast with almost zero expats. Today, we will take...

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After our typical Salinas Downpour yesterday (12 hours of rain, half-inch of precipitation), it was pleasant to take my walk this morning under clearing skies. In this part of December, by 9am the sun is already fairly high in the sky, shining brightly, and the temperature is creeping up to 80F. On the way, I was treated to a sight that I see fairly often on the beach here. A young gringa lady was setting herself up for a day on...

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