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Ecuador

Everyday Life at Casa Blanca

My little casita (which is huge by my standards; the bathroom alone is nearly as big as my whole house!) is pretty upscale. The stove is an induction model which requires special pans. It took me three lessons from Randy before I really learned how to even turn the darn thing on! You press and hold your finger on one button and it lights up four choices of burners. Another press and hold and that burner turns on, and then you push to make the heat setting higher or lower. Well I thought I understood it but I guess I wasn’t holding my finger down for long enough, because it wouldn’t respond. Then I’d end up jabbing it repeatedly, saying “Come ON, you bastard”! That never worked. Even now when I go to use the stove I feel a huge sense of triumph when it does what I ask….me, Supreme Master of the Universe!

I also had trouble with the dryer. I got instructions from Randy but no one was here when I went to do laundry. I was sure I followed his instructions but no matter what buttons I pushed, I couldn’t get any heat! It just kept using cold air, and my clothes never got dry. I was afraid it was going to be like the stove deal and I’d require remedial schooling! I gave up and draped my clothes all over the compound to dry. When Randy came home I confessed and then found out that the propane tank for the dryer was empty. I was SO relieved that it wasn’t my fault!

The kitchen has granite countertops. I don’t like them! I already broke a large drinking glass just by tipping it over. So I went and bought a couple more glasses ($.87 each) in case this gets to be a bad habit.

Here the garbage man comes around every day! It’s surprising that this level of service happens in such a poor developing country…..where in the US do you get daily garbage pickup?! The trucks constantly play a loud recorded song so you can hear them coming and run out with your garbage. That way, it doesn’t sit on the street for the hungry street dogs to tear apart. I don’t know the words to the song, something about “Bring me your basura”. It’s one of those tunes that sticks in your brain and you can’t get rid of, like the chicken song or the Macarena.

It’s often very overcast here in winter. Most days you’re lucky to see an hour or two of sunshine. Anywhere else, you’d swear it was going to start raining any minute, but here it seldom rains in winter. But the temperatures are good, mid-70’s every day and a few degrees cooler at night. I definitely brought the wrong clothes. I swear when I lived here it was fiendishly hot every day all year! But I guess I just thought so because I was encased in an extra 100# of fat. I’m cold all the time now! I brought just one fleece shirt, which is too warm, no long sleeve shirts, and only two pair of long pants. Inside the casita the temperature stays a constant 78-79° which seems plenty warm enough, but I pretty much keep a little fleece blanket over me at all times. Weird.

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2 replies on “Everyday Life at Casa Blanca”

I had to laugh about the problem with the stove and dryer. I wonder how I would make out with such a modern conveniences! Probably eat a lot of salads. lol

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