About Me

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Cuenca, Azuay, Ecuador
We are from Connecticut originally and have most recently lived in North Carolina, USA. We are starting a new life in South America so our retirement $'s will go farther toward a new way of life and a new adventure.Prior to June of 2010 we never thought a move such as this would be possible or advantageous for us. And, that is why we call this blog "Retirement: Plan B" We intend to see and do as much as possible in our retirement. Spend quality time with family, friends and each other.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

It's been a year already !!!!!

  The 15th of June will mark our one year anniversary of arriving in Cuenca. We have lived a very different life than the one we lived before becoming expats. Of course the biggest change is that we are retired and can do what we want when we want for the most part. We have gone through the residency process and are now officially residents of Ecuador. We have found an apartment with a view of the Caja’s, the mountains surrounding Cuenca. We have opened bank accounts and bought furniture and have done all the things we needed to do to settle in our new home..

The View
The Building
We go out to dinner and socialize a lot more than we did in the past. Our eating habits are somewhat different than they were. We have eaten more rice in one year than we did in the entire rest of our lives. We are walking a lot more and we know a little more Spanish than we did before we got here, but not bi-lingual by any stretch of the imagination. A trip to the bank this morning really brought that point home since no one there spoke English and I couldn’t read the withdrawal slip to fill it out correctly. I know it has been a year and I should know by now.
  We have been swimming in the Pacific ocean and eaten foods we never knew existed. We have seen people get really excited about soccer (futbol), we still will say from time to time “Can you believe we are living in the Andes mountains? Joan has taken up weaving and is enjoying it immensely.
  We have met a lot of people in the past year, both Ecuadorians and expats. We now know people who have traveled all over the world and have lived in different countries. Some (most) are really nice and some we can do without. There are good and bad everywhere and Ecuador is not an exception to that rule.

The Pacific Ocean at Salinas Ecuador

Local fare

  As I have written before Cuenca is not paradise and as I meet more people I am hearing others have not found that place yet either. We are enjoying our new life and I would suggest that others might want to consider the expat route. There are people here who are retired and then there are others who are here to work whether they are of retirement age or not. We recently met a man who has been an expat for 25 years and has lived in several countries over that time.   
  From as far back as I can remember the U.S. was always the best place in the world and there was no where else that was anywhere near as good. While I still believe the United States is a great place I no longer believe it is the only place. I will concede that it might be the only place for a lot of people though. We have met some of them here and they didn’t fit in or stay long. They were the ones who thought everyone should speak English and “that’s not how we do it in the states” were the first words out of their mouths for any situation they found uncomfortable or different.

We are planning to see a lot more of Ecuador in the near future. We have yet to spend any time in the Quito area and while we have been to the coast we haven’t seen all of it or really taken the time to explore life there. There is the jungle to see as well. So we expect the adventure to continue and we will report about the interesting stuff as best we can.

No Gracias, Kid, I think we'll walk.

Hasta Pronto, 
Dale and Joan


  1. Enjoying the blog!

    I'm visiting with family in Phoenix for a while. Here are some recent pics:


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