Tag Archive | "Rosita Elena"

Ecuador Car Rental Review


See below why our recent article about Ecuador car rentals aroused more than just comments about cars. That message evoked a strong reaction to change… a change that must take place…  a change where resistance is futile and in many places a gesture that degrades our chances for happiness, health and a life of ease.  See why below.

We Americans do love our cars.

I know.

I have kept my little Suzuki Samari going for 22 years now… and hopefully will be driving it for another 22 years…. or more.

 

Four wheel drive from flowers. What fun!

I was not surprised that my suggestion in the Ecuador car rental article “get a driver rather than rent a car  in Ecuador” caused some panic.

You can read that article at car rentals in Ecuador

Beware those who try to separate Americans from their cars!  This caused one reader to worry so about the cost of cars that he wrote:

Hi Gary,  what about importing your own car, or buying one there?
From what you are writing, the living seems to be very inexpensive, that is until you want to travel on your own. Try that on $1000 month or a fixed income.
All that shines is not gold. Reading between your lines these past 3 months I have come to conclude that there are lots of “hidden” costs in living in this 3rd world country.

I have lived for decades in many similar countries, and even worse, however never have I encountered such car costs as you describe. These are by far the most expensive car rentals I have heard of.  Doesn’t make sense living there unless one wants to walk or take taxis everywhere. An independent person would be doomed to frustration.  No, thanks…this was the article that opened my eyes.

This reader jumped to some incorrect conclusions. The gist of the article was that people who visit Ecuador should hire a car and driver.

The car rental situation is quite different for a tourist than for someone who has moved to Ecuador, learned the system… knows the roads and is not trying to see the country in a limited  time period.

Many people who live in Ecuador have cars.  Cars are not that expensive…. especially new ones partly assembled in Ecuador.

Gas is really cheap ($1.50 a gallon) and mechanics very inexpensive.

We recently looked at buying a four wheel drive Land Rover Challenger in good shape for our hotel.  The asking price was $15,000.  But we wouldn’t drive it.

GoEcuador says: It is now possible to obtain a used car in good condition beginning at $4000.

I just posted an entire report about prices of used cars for our Ecuador Living subscribers. If you do not subscribe to Ecuador Living and want that report on Ecuador car prices, learn how to get that report here.

Plus that reader says he is independent because he has a car?

He forgets the fact that this means he is very dependent on cheap gas… something he may not have for long.

In Ecuador, the cost of hiring a driver can be less then renting a car and may even less than owning your own car. The availability of drivers with cars can eliminate the idea that we become dependent on others if we do not have a car.

One small piece of technology altered the automobile driver equation… the cell phone. In Ecuador most people have cell phones.   A number of drivers we and many others rely on have cell phones.  A car is always just minutes away from a call… no parking… no insurance… no maintenance… no getting gas.

Another reader wrote:

Thank you!  We would purchase a locally manufactured ‘middle of the road’ (pun) vehicle.  But I’m worried about drivers, accidents, tickets, gringo-problems with the locals and the police as well as the various other road condition, speeders, etcetera other issues.  (We have both driven over 45 years in various countries with no tickets – I’m not worried about our driving.)  We plan to relocate to Ecuador – probably suburban/rural area (but near enough to a city with a bilingual school) so will need a car daily for commuting our daughter to school, shopping, and more.  How can it be affordable to take taxis all the time instead of owning a vehicle ourselves?  Please let me know how others do it.   Do you and Merri drive in Ecuador? Thanks.

These notes conjure several important points about change from living in Ecuador or anywhere abroad…  points that go way beyond cars.

These readers, like so many readers who contact me, projected the old American commuter ideal onto an imagined lifestyle into Ecuador.

Why?

This mental error is understandable.   We Americans are car junkies.

I am living proof.

Like many Americans I obtained my driving license on my 16th birthday.  Shortly after I found a job and bought my own car… a 58 Chevy Bel Air just like this.

ecuador-car-rentals

That was a great car and I just about lived in it.  We boomers in high school were judged by our cars!

I initially carried the burden of the car mentality with me when I left the USA.  I have driven in some crazy places during my time… jungles… war zones… deserts… swamps.  We’ve had our car robbed in Nice … had fender benders in Djakarta and on roundabouts in London and Rome.  Merri had her car bombed in the parking lot of the Picasso Museum in Barcelona…along with everyone else’s car there. (Long live the Basques!) Plus I have had a couple of cars stolen and some serious smashes in the US.  I live with the effects of a broken back, whiplashed neck and busted knee from driving an Austin Healey Frogeye (see below) into an 18 wheeler truck .

So I have experienced the good and the bad of cars.

When Merri and I bought our first hacienda in Ecuador, the seller threw in a really great, old Land Rover… gray… perfect leather seats but so old it had only three switches… one for the lights, one for the windshield wipers and one that apparently did nothing.   You could (and we did) start that vehicle with a hand crank.  The heating and air conditioning system was a flap in front that you could either open or shut.

We loved that car and I drove it exactly once… from our hacienda to Calacali… about a hour ride with only 15 minutes on a paved road.

The rest of the time we had our driver drive us.  This provided one more job in a country that needs employment plus gave Merri and me time to talk… look at the scenery and not worry about parking and all the rest of the hassle that comes with driving.

That is the only one time I have driven in Ecuador in all these decades.

Now let me add… I have always been a driver.

When I lived in Hong Kong I had a car… a great little Sprite Frogeye. Like this…

I loved that car in Hong Kong but hardly ever drove it.  I took the peak tram, the Star Ferry, taxis… the trolley and even jumped on the bus from time to time.

Why?

Have you ever tried to park in Hong Kong?

Ditto for London. I had a number of cars… first a little MG Midget like this.

In 1970, I drove that MG from London to Rome with my wife and two children… one still in diapers… a mistake… having not learned about the luxuries of Eurorail.

Then I had an Audi… a Peugeot… a BMW… and a Triumph Spitfire.

Yet I rode my bicycle many miles through London traffic from my home is Chiswick to my office on Artillery Row near Buckingham Palace.  I was often stopped by the police and even ticketed for riding my bike on a short cut through Kensington Gardens.   I also regularly used the Tube.

Why?

Have you ever tried to drive in London?

Plus riding the bike every day eliminated having to drive the car to a gym… a double savings.

Here is a point about change that goes beyond cars.

Americans are car addicted because of the nature of America.

Americans need and are highly dependent on cars because everything is spread out,  gas has been cheap, there is little public transportation and labor is expensive.

This set of conditions does not apply in all countries.  Cars are an asset in the USA but they can be liabilities elsewhere.

Why in a time when the environment is at risk through pollution… energy prices are rising… and roads are becoming more and more congested… would one want to stick to a lifestyle that revolves around one car per person if that is not the most effective lifestyle?

The one car per person mentality is old thought.

We really need to move onto the new.

Due to high labor costs, Americans have become hooked on DYI.   Yet when we move to a country with great, low cost labor… it makes sense to take advantage of these conditions.  Everyone gains.

When we can do good, why not create a bit of employment and save time, energy and money… why not sit back and enjoy the ride?

Hundreds of my readers have moved to Ecuador.  Almost none have chosen to buy a car because they really are not needed in many places there.

In Cotacachi we walk. Our friends who have moved to Cotacachi report  losing weight, feeling better and having more energy… in part because they walk more instead of driving.

Taxis are very inexpensive.  Most trips around town are a dollar and they come quickly to a cell phone call.  Though Merri and I do not use the buses, many of our friends do. The system works well.  If we need to take a trip away from the village, we have a number of drivers who have excellent vans and cars who charge between $55 and $70 to take us wherever we want to go.  A ride is  available at any time night or day… with one cell phone call.  Usually on a long furniture shopping trip to many places nearby, we might spend $10-$15….plus we have the advantage of the driver’s help, no problems parking, etc.

We have eliminated the cost of the car… gas… maintenance…. insurance…. parking… security.

Many US and Canadian readers write to us asking about cars…. big refrigerators… washing machines and dish washers.  These are all products that have evolved from North America’s spread out, low energy, high labor cost, nationally distributed, highly preserved food lifestyle.

In many countries you do not need these expenses and burdens.  You can walk daily to the market and get great fresh food.  This is fun!

Why have a huge fridge?  Merri and I love visiting the market. We searched for the tiniest fridge we could find.  We live just like we lived in London for all those years.  Every morning out on the streets looking for THE perfect vegetables, fruits, etc. and then enjoying a morning coffee and back home with everything for lunch!  What fun!

ecuador-car-rental

Here’s the kitchen of one of our condo rentals.  Do you see a fridge?  It is tiny and hidden away. We amble to the food markets instead. Cotacachi market is just three blocks away and we enjoy buying our food fresh from our neighbors.

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Ecuador Visit

The market provides these bicycle carts. For 50 cents or a dollar a happy man will ride all your groceries home for you….and put them away if you like!

The food market is fun and we love having a hot fig and cheese sandwich for breakfast. Not a combination most would ever dream of. They are delicious but missed if you are driving your car though miles of traffic to get to the American style super market!

Why pay a premium for imported dishwashers and washing machines when you can have cheerful, happy people do your cleaning and ironing for you?  You save time, energy and create employment to help the poor.

Which makes more sense?  Spend extra money for a very expensive  imported washing machine that takes up space in your home… and requires effort on your part or spend a LOT LESS money letting these two cheerful mothers, Rosita and…

ecuador-car-rental tags

and Rosita Elena…

ecuador-car-rental tags

do your laundry and deliver your sparkling, ironed clothes to you?  I love all natural clothes but they do require startch and ironing…and here’s our delightful answer.

You save space, money and help the Rositas support their families.

There is another important point here.

You help the environment. One washing machine that serves 20 families is better on the environment than 20 machines serving families.

Ditto for cars. Even in the USA, car sharing is growing as explained in the Washington Post in an article entitled “Car-Sharing Merges Into the Mainstream
Not Just for Tree-Huggers: Businesses and Universities Help Drive Growth of Flexcar, Zipcar.”

You can see how Car sharing is growing in Germany and car sharing is growing in Japan.

Car sharing is growing in these industrialized countries because labor is still dear.  In Ecuador you can car share with a driver!

Plus one more really important point.   With rising energy costs, why would any of us think that on a limited budget we can continue to have this wasteful high energy lifestyle?  Why would we even want our old wasteful high energy lifestyle?  Americans have been warned.  Four dollars a gallon gasoline can return.

In fact four bucks a gallon may be low.  In Europe gas can cost seven dollars a gallon.

This note is not about cars.

It is about change.

We’ll be seeing more and more change in our lifetimes… coming faster.

We can profit if we adapt to the change and take advantage of new circumstances by living in new ways based on the local conditions that surround us.

Those who try and stick to old ways in a new environment will lose opportunity and ease in life at best. They may even suffer… sometimes a lot.

Change means we may life differently than before.  Change means we may even choose to live in a country where we were not raised and born.  This change can enhance our lifestyle… improve our health…. relieve our stress… if we adapt and embrace that country for what it is and enjoy its unique attributes.

If we choose to leave one country… why try to reproduce what we decided we no longer enjoy? If you want a mini USA or another Canada in Ecuador… but on the cheap… I expect you’ll be very disappointed coming to Ecuador.

Ecuador is a great place to be… but it is Ecuador… not Canada… not the USA.

Think about the quote by Anatole France about change: All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another.

Through change we may lose the one car per person lifestyle… but gain stronger legs… healthier lungs and cleaner air.  We may not be able to jump in the Chevy, go to the levy and drop off the laundry, do the banking  and get a Big Mac on the way… but in the change we can eliminate our fear of the meter maid.

Plus that ride can still be provided by a wonderful knowing person… just one cell phone call and minutes away.

Do not get me wrong. I still have cars… three right now in fact… all in the US, a Honda minvan for long drives and our old Suzuki and a conservative Dodge pickup for use on the farm.  Conditions warrant each.

Yet I am thinking about creating bio diesel from the farm when change brings the day that gas is not so available or cheap.

We have no car in Ecuador and have never missed one for a second.

If change is bringing a time when the daily one person per car commute must pass… Ecuador is a great place to get started.  For car sharing with drivers, taxis, buses and yes walking… Ecuador is a good place to be. 

Gary

Join Merri me and Thomas Fischer of JGAM and our webmaster David Cross in North Carolina this October.

Learn more about global investing, how to have an international business and early retirement in Ecuador at the course.

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Or join us in Ecuador and learn more about living and retiring in Ecuador.

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course
Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Tour

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador
Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

See why we love Cotacachi Market here.

Ecuador visit

 

Ecuador Charity


See a link about Ecuador charity, giving and an Ecuador Living excerpt below.

Our Ecuador charity does not just give.   Just giving builds dependence which is not our goal. Our aim is to help the great people of Ecuador help themselves.

This is why our Ecuador charity, Land of the Sun Foundation  has had its greatest focus in the past few years on helping the hotel Meson de las Flores learn how to stand on its own.  We have helped the Meson staff take Meson from a crumbling empty shell and transform it into renewed facility and profitable operation.  All profits go back to improving the hotel or to the Ecuador Land of the Sun charity that aims to help expand business in Ecuador.  Merri and I do not make a penny from the hotel….our pay check  goes to the heart instead of  the pocketbook

For Meson’s success, we thank all of you who have visited us here.

The staff at Meson de las Flores asked me to send all of you their best wishes for UN MUY FELIZ ANO.  Here is Meson’s staff.

Meson-Cotacachi-Hotel

From left to right Meson’s staff.  Ecuardo – maître d,  Alberto – sous-chef, Consuelo – hostess, Ray – global liasion, Rosita Elena – maid, Mauricio, – night assistant and tour guide, Santiago – chef,  Franklin – manager.  Not present Rosita De la Torres – maid.

The staff of Meson de las Flores are to be congratulated. They are remarkable people who have been willing to work hard for and to deserve their success.  Here is the type of comment I continually receive about service at Meson de las Flores.

Dear Gary and Merri,  From Mesón de las Flores I am sending you my very best wishes for this coming year!!!  I am at your hotel since Monday afternoon together with two good friends and we have really enjoyed the place, the warmth of your staff and the natural food.  I have particularly enjoyed the chance to relax, to do some sightseeing in Cotacachi and Otavalo.  2008 was a very busy year for me, but also a very blessed time for which I am very grateful to God.  I thank Him for the opportunity of having met during this year people like you who has a passion  for what they do and their work benefit many  people´s live. Have a wonderful 2009!!

The warmth of the staff at Meson is a continual refrain I read like this:

Hi Gary and Merri!  I  miss Ecuador so much!  It is amazing to me that, after only 90 days there I feel such a strong connection and love for Cotacachi and all the local people and the others I met there.  I am counting the days until my return.  You promised me that I would be pampered — and El Mason and the people
there really took care of me.  I think it is good to leave Ecuador and experience “home” — it really confirms that Ecuador is a beautiful place and the people there are so warm and welcoming.  Best thing I ever did!  Can’t wait to return!  Blessings to you both,

Having Ray as our global liasion at the hotel has been a hug addition that really helps guests.  We receive continual raves about Ray:

I LOVED the market in Otavalo and came home with another extra-large Ecuadorian bag loaded with rugs and wall-hangings. A very tempting place that I visited 4-times just to give you an indication of how much FUN I had there.
We’ll have to see how our retail season goes and if I can break away for a couple of weeks, I’ll travel back to Ecuador for two weeks in April.  Ray is a splendid character and makes one feel that “our casa is your casa” during your stay. He has that manner that invites and excites and I feel he is a huge plus to your organization. Everyone really likes Ray and I miss him already and his lighthearted banter and genuine care.

Next trip I’ll bring lots of ones and fives. Even twenties were a drag. Imagine! At home a $100.00 bill goes direct to pay one bill alone or one “small” grocery shopping without blinking an eye.

This guest is not alone in praising Ray. Meson has also become a  central meetng place for the gringo community in Cotacachi. Ray organized a Christmas party and this Cotacachi resident who emigrated from Michigan wrote:

Hi, Gary and Merri.  Just a quick note to say thank you for the great Christmas Party for Gringos at El Meson!  It was a lot of fun and we were amazed at how few of the people we actually had met.  Of course we solved that by making sure we met everyone there and invited them to visit us when out our way.  We wish you a very blessed Christmas and a fabulous 2009!  Looking forward to seeing you soon, Love.

Ray seems to help guests in so many ways:

Hi Merri  Returned from Cotacachi last Thurs after a great trip.  The woman that traveled with me wants to return this summer – she could not believe how nice the area is and the friendliness of the people.  I saw my apartment and am very happy with the bed and bedding that you added.  Thank you.  Ray Manna is a super nice person and very friendly and accomodating with the guests – a real plus.  Brought over 200lbs of clothing, school supplies, medical supplies and gifts for the children and nursing home.  Everything was donated – a very warm experience and shared joy.  I wish you and Gary a Merry Christmas – hope to see you in Ecuador in the Spring.  Hugs and love

From shopping to checking out and arranging tours. Another guest wrote:

Hi Merri, We are back from Ecuador and in a serious cold spell in Alberta. It is minus 30 C this morning but is beautifully sunny. We have a little snow so at least it feels like Christmas.  I just wanted to say thanks for your guidance in planning our trip. I also wanted to let you know what a terrific job Ray did despite the fact that he was a sick as a dog. His upbeat positive attitude and willingness to help was second to none. He is a real asset to your organization.  We enjoyed our stay at El Meson and found Cotacachi and the surrounding area to be both beautiful and peaceful.  We are already planning our next trip to Ecuador and are dreaming about its warmer days. Best wishes for the holiday season.

Ray and the staff make everyone feel like part of our family…and you are…when you stay with us at Mesons, as this guest noted.

I just wanted to drop you a note and let you know how much myself and all of our “extended family” enjoyed the course that you, Gary, and all of your competent staff put on earlier this month.  I am really just getting my feet back on the ground and I think that we are finally there.  Gary was awesome as we expected and gave me as really a beginning investor many insights and new ideas to think about.  I am speaking for myself and several others.  You showed me that you are an expert planner and really went  out of your way to accommodate  us especially when we had people coming in at different times.   Last and not least was Ray who also handled so much on the fly and did it well.    Ray really helped with the leaving process.  We really enjoyed your hotel and the hospitality.  It was  memorable. Thanks so much and we hope to keep in touch and continue with Gary’s newsletters! Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

Ray helps in Cotacachi and elsewhere as this guest noted:

Merri, We have arrived at Palmazul and it is very nice.  I would like to tell you that Tina and I had a wonderful time at Cotacachi.  The staff and service at El Meson could not have been better.  I must tell you that Ray was an excellent host and was attentive to every detail of our stay.  All of the other guests love Ray. I will report back to you after our trip in Palmazul. Best wishes.

Guest also report feeling healthier and often lose weight..even though they eat more as this guest reported:

Hi Merri:  Back home after that long flight and am already ready to return to Cotacachi.  Gary’s e mail this morning about the essential oils and other things to reduce stress.  He left out the most important thing…..Going to Cotacachi, El Meson, meeting new friends, seeing old friends, and seeing all the wonderful smiles of your staff, and  the people of Ecuador.

When I go to Ecuador, after the first day, I take no medicine, eat healthy food, get lots of exercise, and just feel wonderful.  Since I have been home..ort on my travels home, I have had a who knows what hamburger, bag of fritos, diet cokes, processed cheese and other just total crap, and I bet I have gained back those four pounds I lost in Cotacachi…in just two days.

Guest really feel healthier and enjoy our philosophy of health at the hotel.

Dear Merri and Gary, How wonderful an experience we had with you…and how much respect we have for you both.   Thank you for the extraordinary services you are offering in these times to so many.   It is rare that we feel as aligned with people as we do with you on so many fronts at once – investments, political opinions, commitment to the indigenous, ‘being healthy,’ commitment to organics/biodynamics and a religion of being kind.   Wow.  With Appreciation.

A stay at Meson seems to be food for the body and the soul as this reader reports:

My Dearest Merri and Gary,  I cannot thank you both enough for your wonderful hospitality.  I just want you to know that everything I read about Ecuador from your news letters and emails was exactly the way you described it and better…………..

The day we were all returning to Quito to go our different ways at the end of the tour, I was overwhelmed with tears because you both had been so wonderful and I didn’t want it to end.  I was already missing you and the wonderful experience I had had during your Ecuador Tour Adventure……..You both are very special and I am honored to be a part of your Group.

I also want you to know that………

I fell in Love while I was there……………..I  fell  in  Love.

I fell in love with the Country, the People, the Mountains, the Sky’s, the Thousands of stars at night, the Flowers,the Rivers, the Ocean, the Villages, the Towns, The Taxi drivers who were so helpful and wanted to speak English and practiced on me……….The Ecuadorian people who seemed to have this overall feeling of Happiness and well being that was contagious where ever we went.  From the Bus driver who stood at the door of our bus and helped each and every member of our group, everyday, get in and out of the bus. He was always smiling and happy to help.  To the Indian women, who were washing the Family’s clothes on flat stones in the River.  They looked up from their work, as our bus passed by, waving to some of us staring in disbelief………….I waved back, with tears in my eyes. They smiled at me as if to say… all is well and you are welcome……

Everywhere we went I felt as though I was surrounded by smiling faces.  Just walking out of the Hotel in Cotacache, the Native Indians of the area were dressed in their Native costume, except it wasn’t a costume, it was their way of life……….Immaculate, clean clothes, beautifully embroidered blouses with wonderful long wool skirts, colorful sashes around their waists, carrying small children wrapped in beautiful fabric on their backs.  I was in awe………. I was feeling as though I was in a time machine that was set for the mid 1850’s.  I had indeed traveled back in time and landed in Ecuador…………….The air was clean, the water was fresh, the food was healthy and delicious…………..I kept thinking, Where am I?  Is it possible?  Am I dreaming?  Is it real?

After being there for a couple of days, and easing into the relaxed, tranquil, lifestyle.  I began to notice the little nuisances of the Indigenous people I was surrounded by.

Every morning, wherever I went, I was always greeted with Buenos Dias ( good morning).  It was so peasant and  so comfortable so nice.  I  forgot about where I had come from, and my only concern was finding out everything I could about this beautiful Gentle Country of Beautiful gentle people.

Everyday was a unique Visual Experience for me.
I remember waking up to the Church bell ringing at 6am and looking out the window and seeing the mothers walking their children to the school.  All cleaned up with fresh clothes, their native costumes, and smiles.  Walking along the  hand made stone sidewalks, skirts swaying as they walked, lightly brushing the sidewalk as they made their way to the school.  Just watching them gave me a feeling of well being, and a knowing sense that all is well.   No plastic, no tensil, no cartoon characters acting like humans.  It was real,
real people, real feelings, real emotions experiencing their version of life on Planet Earth…

There were many times I was overwhelmed with emotions of humility and feelings of being honored and grateful to have had the opportunity to experience this unique Gift in those present moments.   A Gift that you, Gary and Marri, have made available to a select few. You and Ecuador have changed my life and my thinking.  Thank you, I am so grateful.

See more about Ecuador charity in an excerpt from Ecuador Living

We invite you to join us in Ecuador this year.

Gary

Our January courses are almost full but we have plenty space in February and beyond.

Join us at a course in Cotacachi or on Ecuador’s coast this winter.

Jan. 16-21 Ecuador Spanish Course

Jan. 22-23 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

See condos like this in Cotacachi for $46,500.

Ecuador-real-estate-advertising

Jan. 24-27 Coastal Real Estate Tour

See Manta condos like this one. Delegates are inspecting the 1,000+ square foot patio.

Manta-Condo

The patio has this view.

Feb. 9-11 Beyond Logic-Shamanic Mingo

Feb. 13-15 International Business & Investing Made EZ

Feb. 16-17 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

March 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

March 10-15 Ecuador Export Expedition

March 16-19 Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one$1,799 for two

Here is our Ecuador tour schedule for the balance of 2009.

Date                    Course                      Couples Fee

May 21-26  Ecuador Spanish Course         ($999)
May 27-28  Imbabura Real Estate Tour      ($749)

June 12-15  Shamanic Mingo Tour             ($999)
June 16-17  Imbabura Real Estate Tour      ($749)
June 18-21  Coastal Real Estate Tour         ($749)

July 2-7       Ecuador Import Export Expedition ($1,499)
July 8-9       Imbabura Real Estate Tour     ($749)
July 10-13   Coastal Real Estate Tour        ($749)

Sept. 17-22  Ecuador Spanish Course        ($999)
Sept. 23-24  Imbabura Real Estate Tour     ($749)
Sept. 25-28  Coastal Real Estate Tour        ($749)

Oct. 21-26   Ecuador Import Export Expedition ($1,499)

Nov. 6-8       International Investing and Business Made EZ Ecuador ($999)
Nov. 9-10     Imbabura Real Estate Tour          ($749)
Nov. 11-14   Coastal Real Estate Tour            ($749)

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one$1,349 for two

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one$1,799 for two

Better still join us all year in Ecuador! See our entire schedule of 27 courses, tours, mingos and expeditions we’ll conduct in 2009 and how to attend them FREE.

The course fee includes meeting at Quito airport (day before the
course)…transportation (by group bus) to Cotacachi and back to Quito.
Course fee does not include air are. accommodations, food or individual transportation.

Ecuador Real Estate is a Start


Ecuador real estate savings are only a start to the benefits there.

Our Ecuador real estate tours help you see a maximum amount of Ecuador real estate for sale in the least time and most efficient way. Our staff makes these tours fun, exciting and special.

Let me introduce the men who guide you on your Ecuador real estate tours, Steve and John Papski. The fact that both are multi national is important. Steve is English, John Polish, but both lived many years in London and both have lived all over the world. Steve lived for years in the US.

Both are utterly committed to Ecuador. They have lived in Ecuador for years and have Ecuadorian families. Both are totally fluent in English and Spanish. Here you can see why in a message from Steve sent while he is in England. Steve writes:

I’m missing my Ecuador as I view it from afar and here I try to understand why.

If I havn’t posted as regularly as usual it’s because I seem to be very busy on vacation in England. In Cotacachi I’m looked after like a king by the wonderful staff at Meson de las Flores. They cook for me, wash my clothes, clean my room and generally try to take care of any and every need they can envisage I might need.

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Here is Rosita Elena looking after my son – she just does it because she likes to!

I would consider myself very special; except I know they treat every guest like this, and if there is the very occasional slip-up, as there is in any hotel, it’s not for want of effort nor desire on their part.

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Humble and helpful – and much missed and appreciated from afar!

Here in England, even if there were such wonderfully caring and service orientated people to help with daytime chores, it really is only the Royalty who could afford to employ them anyway.

So consequently it’s come as a shock to the system to cook for three, wash, clean, and tidy the house on vacation. I love to see my family but next time I’m going on vacation in Ecuador!

England is looking gloomy this summer. Apart from the continuous grey skies, 10 sunny warm days so far this year according to my brother-in-law, all the talk is of the downturn in the economy. Nobody can bring themselves to mention “recession” but what is affecting everyone is having less disposable income. Meals out are once again becoming a treat. Foreign holidays to the Mediterranean are being ditched because of high costs and shops are suffering as people spend on only the essentials.

ecuador-trout-site
This was how the weather was last summer in Ecuador. While you can find similar scenery in Scotland you won’t often find similar weather!

Every day the British are being buffeted by bad news. Headlines such as “Armed Forces face training cuts as fuel bill rockets”, “Millions face $200 a month fuel bills” “We’ll have to work until we’re 70 – just as it was in Lloyd George’s day”, and “Private schools fall victim to credit crunch” leave no doubt that if the economy is not in recession it’s not very far away.

Walking around the mall in my hometown of Fareham, a prosperous town compared to many, I can’t really see much evidence of the down-turn, although I do see that retired people are not dressed as well as younger folks. I’m impressed by the ever increasing range of stores and products for sale. The choice is phenomenal.

But then I also notice something less tangible. I ask myself why if there is more choice here, more wealth than in Ecuador, why do so many people look miserable and down-beat in England. I think I notice it more in those who are over 40. But I’m not sure.

In the mall there are several cafes in the aisles and I notice several older folks sat by themselves drinking cups of tea. As I walk down to another café to get internet access I notice an older man hunched over on a bench, his cane resting over his legs. Ninety minutes later I return the same way and there he is – hardly moved.

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An older gentleman, still looking dapper, enjoying time with friends in the sun in Cotacachi’s main square

Perhaps it’s this. In the Times of London a recent article about the National pension quoted the 73 year old Rita Young who is struggling to live off $1,200 a month. ‘… She is angry that elderly people in one of the world’s richest countries are not treated better.

“Things are better than a hundred years ago, when only the righteous were entitled to their shilling a week. But it is a disgrace that we have got to go and beg for the pension credit to bring us up to a level still below the poverty line. Our pension does not even bring us up to the level of the lowest paid in the economy.” Mrs Young, asked what she considers to be a luxury replied “a bar of chocolate”.

Break from the Easter parade
When an ice-cream still brings a smile

Two weeks to go until I return to home in Ecuador. I’m looking forward to life in the slow lane again and now understand and empathize better when I receive emails from our guests saying “I’m missing Ecuador so much, I can’t wait to return”. Steve.

If you are in England and would like to consult with Steve send me a note at gary@garyascott.com and I’ll help yu arramge a personal or telephone consultation.

You can read the second half of Steve’s note as an Ecuador Living subscriber.

Gary

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