Wednesday, December 8, 2010
I woke this morning at 3:00 AM, not disturbed or restless, but thoughtful. I had a dream last night and the characters included important people in my life. I guess we all have those dreams. There was something profound in it though and I feel compelled to write. I’ve been away from our blog for a while. I think most people that read our blog want to hear something about Ecuador and Cuenca and I will get to that, but for now it’s going to be something a little more ethereal. Rachel and I were at Gringos and Friends last night at DiBacco’s Restaurante and had supper with some special people. I looked around the room and realized we were surrounded with special people. Most people say I talk too much, so it’s probably true. Last night I just listened and watched. It wasn’t just a bunch of 60-somethings tipping their brewskies either. There were families there with young children. I took special care to watch the kids play. They were little white children, gringlets. Their blonde hair, fair skin, and blue eyes were an anomaly in this country, but their spirit was one with the little people of the darker condor persuasion. They were content and happy. Not one of them was fussing, whining, or demanding their parent’s attention. Then I looked at the parents and discovered the why. The parents were here to live a different life with the focus on family and all things important, not material. They were going to educate their children in a rich life that could never be afforded at even the most expensive schools in the US. Those young parents were also reaching out to all of us gray panthers, not because they wanted to know the best restaurants in town but because there was a common spirit that transcended our linear chronograph. Ok, enough of the ethereal.
Last week was a special time for Rachel and me. Our container arrived. Now if you live in the US and you are living vicariously through gringo blogs in Ecuador you might wonder what a container is. If you live here in Ecuador, you already know what a container is. A container is either a 20 or 40 foot metal box that rides on a semi truck flatbed, a rail car, or gets hoisted to an ocean vessel where it is carried over the the big water to faraway places like Ecuador. North American expats (gringos) view these containers with equal parts joy and disdain. Generally, you make a decision that those things you left at home in Iowa or Oklahoma were either expendable or not. I came to Ecuador with two suitcases, but then I’m a man. If you are a woman, your sentiments for objects of affection run a little deeper. This all flys in the face of the nonmaterialism I speak of above, but then I think of Out of Africa and the fine china and the Edison phonograph that Meryl Streep brought from Denmark to the Masai in 1914 and I guess I think it's ok in 2010 to bring your subwoofer. One of the first decisions of this newlywed couple was whether it would be worth it to bring those sentimental and creature comforts here to roost. I can tell you that after seeing the warm glow in Rachel’s eyes this past week it was worth it. Rachel’s mother’s special glass trees sit atop Rachel’s French Armoire in our living room. Her elegant wing backed chairs nestle in a corner of our kitchen and dining area. Her massive and luxurious queen sized bed coddles us to sleep at night. The little clay creatures fashioned by Brooks and Bianca in their formative years are here safe and ready to express their story to anyone who will listen. The loveseat where Rachel and I first kissed is in the man cave and welcomes Rachel and I to a repeated experience of love and comfort. Rachel is the daughter of a hardware store owner. Do you think her tools are important? Well, I’m pretty sure she can do some amazing things with them and will.
Art is important too and things crafted by Rachel’s talented and now deceased brother are a constant reminder of his abilities and passion. Let’s not forget the heavy cookware that helps those fresh Ecuadorian vegetables reach their culinary zenith. Then there’s the side by side LG refrigerator that makes ice, dispenses it, and holds enough food for the Ecuadorian army. Yes, we’re both happy with our decision to ship things here. If you want to know a good formula for getting things here we believe we can make some recommendations. Give us a call.