Year: 2018

Once you have made the decision to move to a foreign country, the next thing most people start to think about is “what should I bring with me?” This is an important question, but like most decisions when it comes to moving abroad, the answer is different for different people. When we decided to move to Ecuador, my wife and I shipped a 20-foot container. But I know several expats who brought only a couple of suitcases and are just...

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I would like to get some input from the readers of my blog on something. As some of you know, I have been working for some time now on a book framed around our decision to hike the Inca Trail, and our preparations for the journey. For me, most of the preparation revolved around losing enough weight to go from the morbidly obese category down to merely fat. That is only the framework, however. The heart of the book is...

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There's a moment of clarity, just before you begin, when you think calmly to yourself, "Why am I doing this?" Then the calm is shattered by sheer terror as you are flung out over the abyss. Now your brain is screaming "WHY AM I DOING THIS?!" This was my experience with the "Casa del Arbol" in Baños, Ecuador. Sometimes called "the Swing at the End of the World", this site was made famous by a 2014 photo taken for a...

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It looms like a doorway between two worlds, or a portal between two different times. I’m standing in front of the Puerta de la Ciudadela, the Gate of the Citadel, on a sunny afternoon in Montevideo, Uruguay. As I slowly take in this latest wonder that I’ve found in Uruguay, I realize that in many ways, this Gate really is a crossover point between the old and the new. When it was built around 1742, Montevideo was an important Spanish...

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I am an American. I was born in Annapolis Maryland, one of the oldest cities in the nation. I've lived and worked in her small towns, her big cities, and some of her beautiful rural lands. We own property in America, pay taxes, and are registered voters. I did tech support in the US Senate, where I shared an elevator and chatted with Ted Kennedy, helped Susan Collins with her Blackberry, talked with John McCain about his break with Jon...

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Before I continue with our two weeks in Uruguay, I want to clear up some confusion from the previous post. Rita and I traveled to Uruguay in September of 2017, in the last two weeks of a five week journey that included the Andes in Ecuador; Inca Trail to Macchu Pichu, the Sacred Valley, and Lima in Perú; as well as a weekend in Buenos Aires. On our return, I had a lot of writing to get caught up on...

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When we arrived at Carrasco International Airport after an overnight flight from Lima the sun was just coming up. We had managed to doze a little on the bumpy flight over the Andes, but we were still a bit groggy as we sleep-walked through the motions of getting our passports stamped, finding our luggage turnstile, and making our way through customs to the car rental booth. Already though, we could tell things were a little different here. For one thing,...

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Today I celebrate my second fifth wedding anniversary, by which I mean the fifth year of my second marriage. It seems a good time to reflect on a few things, and I've been trying to sort out and identify my feelings about "the institution of marriage". We hear a lot that the "institution" is threatened by the behavior or actions of one group or another; whether it is the LBGTQ community and same-sex couples, or hetero couples that change spouses...

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Back in September of 2017, Rita and I were spending a couple of weeks investigating Uruguay for some International Living articles, and to satisfy our own curiosity (more on that soon). After spending some time on the Atlantic coast, we moved to the capital city Montevideo, and naturally we could not pass up a chance to cross the Rio de la Plata and spend a weekend in the “Paris of South America” - Buenos Aires, Argentina. It turns out there is a...

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Time for one last look at our all-too-brief three day stay in Lima. I've talked about Walking in Lima, and tantalized your taste buds with Delicious Lima. Now it time to take a quick tour of two small portions of Historic Lima. Every year, tens of thousands of visitors make their way to Perú to explore the ancient ruins left by the Incans and other pre-Colombian civilizations. Rita and I were no exception, as we were mainly in Perú to...

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