Well, it’s less than a month since I last posted, which is a major improvement. Eamon will be 14 years old in just 12 days! He has declined a birthday gathering at Moca and has opted for pizza with Mom instead. He wanted a new microphone for his computer, now en route from amazon.com. Kind of amazing he will be starting his second full year as a teenager!
Work at Quinta Lily continues, somewhat slower than I would like. I talked to our architect Juan Fernando to see if he could find a ‘maestro’ to supervise the workers and perhaps encourage them to move a little quicker. Javier can’t be there all the time since he and I always seem to have plenty of other things to do. We selected the tile for the 3 bathrooms and have found sinks, faucets, etc. The door guy is supposed to have all the doors finished today for the casitas and the main house. No idea about the windows, sigh. I’m not as optimistic as Javier about the doors, but I try to present a positive front whenever he brings them up. This IS Ecuador, after all.
I’ve managed to get all the photos off my iPhone onto my iMac, so I’m going to try and post a bunch of photos. I’m using Eamon’s computer at the moment so the photos will/should/may show up later today.
I’ve applied for my City retirement – hurray! I did a phone interview, having procrastinated on doing the paperwork while in Seattle. The retirement analyst was really sweet and helpful. She emailed me MANY forms to sign. Two of the forms had to be notarized. I was depressed at the possibility of another trip to the consulate in Guayaquil – time and cost. But then a consulate miracle happened! They were coming to Cuenca and bringing their notary stamp! I made an appointment. All very easy – not quite. They needed a cashier’s check from an Ecuadorian bank for the cost of the notarization. That’s where it got complicated….
I spent HOURS trying to get this tiny piece of paper. The biggest road block appeared to be that when I opened my account, I used my passport as identification. I came to the bank with my cedula (no passport). Unacceptable, sigh. The only thing that saved me was when the person at the counter sent me upstairs to the private banking floor – the staff upstairs speak English. I’d forgotten I was a ‘private banking’ customer! They were much more understanding about the passport vs cedula problem and I finally got the check. The incredibly helpful young lady gave me her card and told me if I sent her a copy of my passport and cedula, she could change the account information. She also gently reminded me to ALWAYS come upstairs when I needed banking help – thank you!
Back to the retirement discussion…
As of today, the only document I seem to be missing to complete the retirement paperwork is proof of my social security number. No idea where my card is. Still looking for one of the statement things they send you telling how much you’ll receive when you retire at age 100 or so! Mercy has been looking for boxes of papers upstairs on the 3rd floor. She doesn’t want me to come up because there are cats with fleas. We have a giant bottle of Advantage-like flea medicine on the first floor that can’t seem to make it’s way upstairs. If she doesn’t find anything today, I will need to DHL my passport to Dad so he can take it to the local Social Security office and beg for a new card. The saga continues.
I’m starting a blog for the dog refuge. I need to raise awareness (and hopefully kibble donations). Kaitlin, our Moca marketing wiz, is coming to the quinta with me one day next week to take some photos for a brochure and other things. More about all of that next time…
Life just keeps marching on. Wednesday at Feria Libre is the biggest market day of the week, so Javier and I are shopping for fresh vegetables. Normally he won’t go with me on Wednesdays because of his fear I will be attacked and robbed. Luis cooks fresh soup for the dogs everyday (5 giant pots) and Marco (super vet) said we need to increase to 8 giant pots TWO times a day. Hence the need for awareness raising.
My goal is to have the first post of the new blog completed this week. Alert the media!