Tag Archive | "Portland"

51 Year Currency Survival Lesson


We all matter.  Yet has big government, big pharma, health care and big business ever made you feel metaphorically dragged off the plane because it is inconvenient for them to serve you?  Or have you worried that your bank and credit card company are looking to rip you off rather than look after your savings?  Have you stopped with complaints, because no one seems to care whether you are a satisfied customer or not?  Have you had to wait and wait on the phone or in a line to be served by anyone, a government official, doctor or service representative?

Welcome to our modern world, where markets are global, technology replaces people and we have become numbers, rather than human beings.  This is the world where words promising, that we matter, are only that, words.

The biggest broken promise is that of purchasing power in the US dollar and, in fact, all currencies.   See three ways to survive this undermining of our freedoms through currency deterioration.

Merri and I always celebrate special freedoms in May because it was 51 years ago, in May 1966 I joined Prudential Insurance Company to begin learning about investing.

Two years later, May 1, 1968 I left the USA and arrived in Hong Kong May 2, 1968 and have been living, investing and doing business globally since.

passport

Here are some of the pages in my first passport.  (I have used up many more passports since!)

But it was two years later in May 1971 that one of my most important experiences took place then that can help you now have more freedom, less stress and increased profit despite the loss of the dollar’s purchasing power now.

I will never forget this currency survival lesson when the dollar was unpegged from the Bretton Woods Agreement.   I recall it well as in Singapore on May 5, 1971 with a seven day visa, to May 12, 1971.  I still have that passport though it expired long ago.

multi-currency-visa

Little did I know that this was a week that would change the world… for the worse.

The Raffles Hotel was a famous historic site.

raffles

At that time it was colonially faded but offered a great outdoor restaurant just next to the Long Bar (home of the Singapore Sling).   They offered a traditional breakfast with old fashioned pots of thick cut marmalade and slightly burnt toast that stood in racks of sterling silver.  This elegant setting and the quiet service was an easy, wonderful way to start the day.  I felt in place, relaxed and comfortable, part of an ancient tradition, the modern link in a rite that this hotel had offered prosperity for so many generations past.  I sat back feeling that all was well.  I felt in control and on top of that modern era.

However, everything suddenly changed as I was about to learn a serious lesson in international currency safety.

I settled in for breakfast,opened the local paper (the Straits Times) and saw the four inch headlines that declared “U.S. Dollar Devalues”.

That comfortable era had just come to an end.  Currencies around the world were in turmoil.

That day, when the dollar devalued, money changers would not take the greenback.  I couldn’t pay for my hotel.  I couldn’t even pay for breakfast and I was 12,000 miles from home.  I had just moved into a new reality of freedom loss and was scared!

Since that day I have never trusted the US dollar or any other single currency.  This has reaped rich rewards.  Betting against the US dollar (as I have again and again over these five decades) has been exactly the right thing to do.

This is why at our website we continually look for ways to gain protection from the loss of purchasing power in all currencies.

In the last 51 years various currencies have risen and fallen versus one another, but all currencies have lost purchasing power in the process.   This is one of the greatest challenges to our freedom.  Our goal is to share ideas that enhance three basic qualities of real freedom.

The first quality of real freedom is natural health.  None of us can be truly free until we wrest ourselves from the grip of the health care system (aka disease management system) that is dictated by unfair prices charged by hospitals and big pharma.

The second quality of real freedom is the ability to earn through service.  We, the people,  all matter.  We all have value. We all can make our lives meaningful through service.

So many promises, purchasing power of money, savings, pensions, health care, social security, financial security, privacy, have been broken so many times that no promise made by big business or big government can be trusted.  The only true form of wealth is to have some value, to be able to serve (or produce) in a profitable way so we are useful, required and respected in our community.

The third quality is to use mathematics to seek good investment and currency value.   The only clear understanding of value of investments is that derived from mathematical based financial news rather than speculation based economic news.

A continual evolution based on these three qualities have helped Merri and me, our readers and our income continually grow… through good times and bad.

The reason we have progressed amidst never ending change is because we recognize that details and technologies change, but the fundamentals remain immutable.  “Plus ce change plus ce la meme chose”… the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Our business is totally online now… but the basics are the same… “to provide interesting, useful information and contacts that help make people’s lives better as they prosper from change”.

Life is a trip and we have an entire globe to enjoy the ride. Expanding our horizons beyond the education we gained within our local borders can help our visions penetrate the mists of tomorrow so we can adjust to gain opportunity in change and avoid dangers ahead.  This philosophy has reaped millions for Merri and me.  More important, this approach has helped us follow our purpose and feel that we are doing more for the world than just making a buck.

The increased pace of change leaves all of us with a lot to do.

We feel healthier and more energetic than 50 years ago.  I might not be wiser… but am more experienced and seem in a better position than when I took that first trip to Hong Kong 48 years ago today.

We’ll keep looking for better ways to improve our natural health, energy and desire so we can profitably serve and wisely invest for the future.

Merri and I look forward to the year ahead… and we look forward to sharing it with you!

Gary

The Huge 2018 Risk

Here is a huge risk that could explode in 2018.

I hope I am wrong.

According to Treasurydirect.com, as of October 31, 2017 the cost of interest on  the total US public debt of $20,467,375,664,755.32 (20 trillion+) was $24,411,569,716.36 (24 billion+).

The 36 cents isn’t much of a problem.  The other 20 trillion is.

This is good news and bad… the rock and the hard spot.  The bad news is that the rock (US federal debt) is getting bigger….harder to miss.  The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projected in 2010 (the debt then was a bit over 14 trillion) that, under law at that time, debt held by the public would exceed $16 trillion by 2020, reaching nearly 70 percent of GDP.

They sure goofed on that.  Here we are… not quite into 2018 and debt has shot past 20 trillion.

How could the CBO be so wrong? 

The CBO screwed up because they could never imagine that the Fed would push interest rates so low… and keep them there.  The interest rates are so low that the government can borrow and borrow and still afford the interest.

For example, US Federal government interest this year will amount to around $483 billion on the 20 trillion of debt.  Yet in 2008 on debt of only $9,229,172,659,218.31 (9 trillion +) the interest that year was $451,154,049,950.63 (451 billion +).

Interest payments in 2017 are 7% higher than they were in 2008.  Yet the debt is over 100% higher.  

Very low interest rates have helped the government borrow.  Low interest has also helped the US stocks reach all time high prices.

Here is the very hard spot.  The downside is that low interest has reduced earnings of investors.  Low interest has ruined the lifestyles of many who have retired.

Here is what happened and why the problem may exist for quite a bit longer.

If investors can increase the interest rate to 6% from the lousy 1% (or so) they earn now, they gain 1,263% more over 30 years.  Anyone living off interest, who is drawing down their portfolio over 20 years, makes 57% more annual income every year.

But if investors get 6% interest instead of 1%, the government has to also pay more on it debt.

The government will resist raising rates because it will ruin their budget, cause a collapse of the stock markets and destroy the US dollar.  

Rising interest rates, that we would like to see as investors, will create an almost unimaginable debt crisis.  If government interest goes to 6% it is like the $20+ trillion national debt  rising to 100 trillion!  Unless there are some huge tax increases, a 5% increase in interest rates would increase the national debt by five times.

A tax increase?  The current tax act being proposed reduces, not increases, revenue.

This is not a theoretical problem for the future. This is not something that our children and grandchildren will have to deal with.  This is a problem in the here and now.

Interest rates create a massive problem on two sides of the same coin.  Raise rates the massive national debts ruins the purchasing power of currencies.  Keep interest rates low and capitalism does not work for investors.  Politicians simply borrow more (on our behalf) but for their benefit.

Learn how to have more freedom and time, less stress, better health care, extra income, greater safety and profit in your savings despite America’s deficits, debt and currency risk.

Fortunately there are secrets that will allow a few to live much better, free of debt and worry despite the decline in the dollar’s purchasing power.   My wife, Merri and I, have traveled, lived, worked and invested around the world for nearly 50 years to gain this information.

Let me share the basics of this data and how we can be of help through 2018.

The first fact behind this secret is that things are really good in the western world.  Despite many problems, we are surrounded by more abundance and greater opportunity than almost anyone has ever enjoyed, anywhere, ever.   To enjoy a fair share of this wealth, all we have to do is understand human nature and learn how to invest in the new economy, as it changes and becomes new, again and again.

Merri and I have made seven huge transitions in the 50 years.  Each has allowed us to always stay ahead of losses that the majority of Americans suffer.  We are in another transition right now and want to share why and what to do so you can stay ahead and live a richer, independent life through 2018 and beyond.

A falling US dollar is one of the greatest risks we have to our independence, safety, health, and wealth, but also brings a window of huge profit as I explain below.   Though the greenback has been strong for a number of years, its strength is in serious jeopardy.  The growing federal deficits increase the national debt and this with rising interest rates propels a growing debt service.

When the Dow Jones Industrial Average recently passed 20,000, another milestone of “20” took place that has a much darker meaning to your and my spending power.  The U.S. national debt passed the $20 trillion mark.

The problem is that the Dow will come back down.  National debt will not fall.

The double shock of money fleeing Wall Street and US debt skyrocketing, will destroy the purchasing power of the greenback.

Go to the store even now.  Statistics say inflation is low, but buy some bread or, heaven forbid, some fresh vegetables like peppers or fruit.   Look at the cost of your prescription or hospital bills.  Do something simple like have your car serviced at an auto dealer.  Look at the dollars you spend and you’ll see what I mean.

The loss of the dollar’s purchasing power erodes our independence, our freedom and our savings and wealth as well. 

At the same time, low interest rates by big banks and higher health care costs soak up the ever diminishing income and savings we have left.  According to a Gallup poll, the most unpopular three institutions in America are big corporations & Wall Street banks, HMOs and Congress.

Yet there is little we can do because these institutions are in control.

Over the last 50 years the average income for 90 percent of the American population fell.  Our health system is restricted by a Kafka-esque maze of legislation and insurance regulations that delay, frustrate, and thwart attempts by patients and doctors from proper medical care.  Big banks and corporations restrict our freedom of choice.  The business customer relationships are no longer transactions between free equals.

Banks can trap us in indebtedness at every age from student loans to mortgages to health care costs.  They pay almost nothing on our savings.  They hide unexpected fees and payments in complex and unreadable documents.  Banks and big corporations routinely conceal vital information in small print and then cheat.  Weak regulations and lax enforcement leave consumers with few ways to fight back.  Many of these businesses ranging from cable TV to phone and internet service to health insurance have virtual monopolies that along with deceptive marketing destroys any form of free market.

These same companies control the credit-scoring agencies so if  we don’t pay unfair fees, our credit scores will plunge and we could lose the ability to borrow money, rent an apartment, even to get a job.  Many consumers are forced to accept “arbitration clauses” in lieu of  legal rights.  The alternative is to lose banking, power, and communication services.

Big business has also usurped our privacy.  Internet companies sell our personal data.  Personal information is pulled from WiFi and iPhones track and store our movements.  The government can access this information, sometimes without subpoenas.  There’s a lot that we don’t know, often withheld under the guise of “National Security.”

The glow on Western democratic capitalism has dimmed… or so it seems.  The US, leading the way, is still a superpower with economic, innovation and military might, but the institutions that should serve the people have become flawed or broken.

America’s infrastructure is in shambles.  The nation’s bridges are crumbling, many water systems are filled with toxins, yet instead of spending more to fix this, we build more prisons.  The 2.2 million people currently in  jail is a 500 percent increase over the past thirty years.  60% of the inmates belong to ethnic groups.  Not just non-white ethnic groups are suffering.  Annual death rates are falling for every group except for middle-aged white Americans.  Death rates are rising among this group driven by an epidemic of suicides and afflictions stemming from substance abuse, alcoholic liver disease and overdoses of heroin and prescription opioids.

America’s middle class is shrinking.  Nearly  half of America’s income goes to upper-income households now.  In 1970 only 29 percent went to this group.  How can we regain our freedom, our happiness and our well being in such a world?

What can we do?

Gain a better, freer life is to combine better health, higher income and greater savings for a happier, more resilient lifestyle. 

Merri and I will celebrate our 50th year of global living, working, investing and researching to find and share ideas on how to have simpler, low stress, healthier, more affluent lifestyles.  Our courses, reports and email messages look at ways to gain:

#1:  Global micro business income.

#2:  Low cost, natural health.

#3:  Safer, more profitable, investments that take little time or cost to buy and hold… so you can focus on earning more instead

Many readers use our services for just one of these three benefits.  They focus only on health or on earning more or on better, easier investing.

27 years ago Merri and I created the International Club as a way for readers to join us and be immersed in all three of these benefits.   The International Club is a year long learning program aimed at helping members earn worry free income, have better affordable good health and gain extra safety and profits with value investments.

Join us for all of 2018 NOW.

The three disciplines, earning, health and investing, work best when coordinated together.  Regretfully the attacks on our freedom are realities of life.  There is little we can do to change this big picture.  However we can change how we care for our health, how we earn and how we save so that we are among the few who live better despite the dollar’s fall.

We start with better lower cost health care.

Club membership begins by sharing ways to be free of the “Secret Hospital Charge Master”.   Just as governments hide truth behind “National Security”, big health care businesses hide medical truths behind “Charge masters”.  Most hospital charge masters are secret because big business does not want us to know how much hospital costs have risen.  Motivations beyond our good health, like corporate greed, want to keep us in the dark about health care cost.

Despite rising health care costs, a report from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention shows that hospitals are the last place we want to be for good health.  One report shows that hospital-acquired infections alone kills 57% more Americans every year than all car accidents and falls put together.

Often, what patients catch in the hospital can be worse than what sent them there.  Governments and health care agencies agree  – antibiotic resistance is a “nightmare.”  An antibiotic-resistant bacteria may be spreading in more hospitals than patients know.  About one in every 25 hospitalized patients gets an infection and a 2013 report from the Journal of Patient Safety showed that medical errors are the third-leading cause of death in the country.

Along with the risk of hospital acquired illness and medical errors, the second huge threat to our well being… is health care costs, especially at hospitals.  This is why charge masters are so often secret.  There are few risks to our wealth that are greater than a hospital stay.

I have created three natural health reports are about:

#1: Nutrition

#2: Purification

#3: Exercise

Each report is available for $19.95.  However you’ll receive this free as club member and save $59.85.

Club members also receive seven workshops and courses on how earn everywhere with at home micro businesses.  We call this our “Live Well and Free Anywhere Program”.   The program contains a series of courses and reports that show ways to earn and be free. These courses and reports are:

  • “International Business Made EZ”
  • “Self Fulfilled – How to Write to Sell”
  • Video Workshop by our webmaster David Cross,
  • The entire weekend “Writer’s Camp” in MP3
  • The report “How to Raise Money Abroad”
  • Report and MP3 Workshop “How to Gain Added Success With Relaxed Concentration”
  • The course “Event-Full – How to Earn Conducting Seminars and Tours”

This program is offered at $299, but is available to you as a club member free.  You save $299 more.

Next, club members participate in an intensive program called the Purposeful investing Course (Pi).  The purpose of Pi is finding value investments that increase safety and profit.  Learn Slow, Worry Free, Good Value Investing.

Stress, worry and fear are three of an investor’s worst enemies.  These destroyers of wealth can create a Behavior Gap, that causes investors to underperform in any market good or bad.  The behavior gap is created by natural human responses to fear.  Pi helps create profitable strategies that avoid losses from this gap.

Lessons from Pi are based on the creation and management of a Primary Pi Model Portfolio, called the Pifolio.  There are no secrets about this portfolio except that it ignores the stories from economic news (often created by someone with vested interests) and is based mainly on good math that reveals the truth through financial news.

The Pifolio is a theoretical portfolio of MSCI Country Benchmark Index ETFs that cover all the good value markets using my 50 years of global experience and my study of the analysis of four mathematical investing geniuses (and friends).

There are seven layers of tactics in the Pi strategy.

Pi Tactic #1: Determine purpose and good value.

Pi Tactic #2: Diversify 70% to 80% of portfolio equally in good value developed markets.

Pi Tactic #3: Invest 20% to 30% equally in good value emerging markets.

Pi Tactic  #4:  Use trending algorithms to buy sell or hold these markets.

Pi Tactic  #5:  Add spice speculating with ideal conditions.

Pi Tactic  #6: Add spice speculating with leverage.

Pi Tactic  #7:  Add spice speculating with forex potential.

The Pifolio analysis begins with a continual research of international major stock markets that compares their value based on:

#1:  Current book to price

#2:  Cash flow to price

#3:  Earnings to price

#4:  Average dividend yield

#5:  Return on equity

#6:  Cash flow return

#7:  Market history

We combine the research of several brilliant mathematicians and money managers with my years of investing experience.

This is a complete and continual study of what to do about the movement of international major and emerging stock markets.  I want to share this study throughout the next year with you.

This analysis forms the basis of a Good Value Stock Market Strategy.  The analysis is rational, mathematical and does not worry about short term ups and downs.  This strategy is easy for anyone to follow and use.  Pi reveals the best value markets and provides contacts to managers and analysts and Country Index ETFs so almost anyone can create and follow their own strategy.

The costs are low and this type of ETF is one of the hardest for institutions to cheat.  Expense ratios for most ETFs are lower than those of the average mutual fund.  Little knowledge, time, management or guesswork are required.  The investment is simply a diversified portfolio of good value indices.  Investments in an index are like investments in all the shares of a good value market.

Pi opens insights to numerous long term cycles that most investors miss because they have not been investing long enough to see them.

The Pi subscription is normally $299 per annum but as a club member you receive Pi at no charge and save an additional $299.

Profit from the US dollar’s fall.

In the 1980s, a remarkable set of two economic circumstances helped anyone who spotted them become remarkably rich.  Some of my readers made enough to retire.  Others picked up 50% currency gains.  Then the cycle ended.  Warren Buffett explained the importance of this ending in a 1999 Fortune magazine interview.  He said:  Let me summarize what I’ve been saying about the stock market: I think it’s very hard to come up with a persuasive case that equities will over the next 17 years perform anything like—anything like—they’ve performed in the past 17!

Club members receive a report about opportunity in the  current strength of the US dollar is a second remarkable similarity to 30 years ago.   The dollar rose along with Wall Street.  Profits came quickly over three years.  Then the dollar dropped like a stone, by 51%  in just two years.  A repeat of this pattern is growing and could create up to 50% extra profit if we start using strong dollars to accumulate good value stock market ETFs in other currencies.

This is the most exciting opportunity I have seen since we started sending our reports on international investing ideas more than three decades ago.  The trends are so clear that I created a short, but powerful report “Three Currency Patterns for 50% Profits or More.”   This report shows how to earn an extra 50% from currency shifts with even small investments.  I kept the report short and simple, but included links to 153 pages of  Good Value Stock Market research and Asset Allocation Analysis.

The report shows 20 good value investments and a really powerful tactic that shows the most effective and least expensive way to accumulate these bargains in large or even very small amounts (less than $5,000).  There is extra profit potential of at least 50% so the report is worth a lot.

This report sells for $29.95 but when you become a club member you receive the report, “Three Currency Patterns For 50% Profits or More” FREE.

Plus get the $39.99 report, “The Platinum Dip 2018” free.

With investors watching global stock markets bounce up and down, many missed two really important profit generating events.  The price of silver dipped below $14 an ounce as did shares of the iShares Silver ETF (SLV).   The second event is that the silver gold ratio hit 80 and has remained near this level, compared to a range of the 230s only two years ago.

Now there is a new distortion ready to ripen in the year ahead.

These two events are a strong sign to invest in precious metals.

I prepared a special report “Platinum Dip 2018”.   The report explains the exact conditions you need to make leveraged precious metal speculations that can increase the returns in a safe portfolio by as much as eight times.  The purpose of the report is to share long term lessons about speculating in precious metals gained through 30 years of speculating and investing in gold and silver.

The low price of silver offers special value now so I want to send you this report because the “Platinum Dip 2018” offers enormous profit potential in 2018.

The report “Platinum Dip 2018” sells for $39.95 but club members receive it free as well.

The $39.95 new “Live Anywhere – Earn Everywhere Report” is also free.

There is an incredible new economy that’s opening for those who know what to do.  There are great new opportunities and many of them offer enormous income potential but also work well in disaster scenarios.

There are are specific places where you can reduce your living expenses and easily increase your income.  Scientific research has shown that being in such places actually make you smarter and healthier.  Top this off with the fact that they provide tax benefits as well and you have to ask, “Where are these places?”.

Learn about these specific places.  More important learn what makes them special.  Discover seven freedom producing steps that you can use to find other similar places of opportunity.

The report includes a tax and career plan broken into four age groups, before you finish school, from age 25 to 50 – age 50-to 65 and what to do when you reach the age where tradition wants you to re-tire.  (Another clue-you do not need to retire and probably should not!)

The report is very specific because it describes what Merri and I, our children and even my sister and thousands of our readers have done and are doing, right now.

Live Anywhere – Earn Everywhere focuses on a system that takes advantage of living in Smalltown USA, but earning locally and globally.

This report is available online for $39.99 but International Club members receive it free.

Save $418.78… “plus more” when you become a club member.

Join the International Club and receive:

#1: The $299 Personal investing Course (Pi).   Free.

#2: The $299 “Live Well and Free Anywhere Program”. Free.

#3: The $29.95 report “Three Currency Patterns For 50% Profits or More”. Free.

#4: The $39.99 report “Platinum Dip 2018”. Free

#5: The three $19.99 reports “Shamanic Natural Health”.  All three free.

#6: The $39.99 “Live Anywhere – Earn Everywhere” report. Free.

#7: A subscription to the Purposeful investing course… Plus more.

These reports, courses and programs would cost $767.78 so the 2018 membership saves $418.78, “plus more”.

What’s the “plus more”?

The International Club membership is $499, but we want to encourage our first 100 members for 2018 to join quickly so we are currently accepting discounted membership at $349. 

To encourage our first 100 members for 2018 to join quickly so we are currently accepting discounted membership at $349.

Save $418.78.  Join the International Club for $349 and receive all the above online now, plus all reports, course updates and Pi lessons through the rest of 2017 and all of 2018 at no additional fee.

Click here to become a member at the discounted rate of $349

Gary 

Golden Freedom


Merri and I always celebrate special freedoms in May, but this May is golden and special for us.  Let’s see if we can make it special for you.

There have been celebrations of freedom from winter as early as Roman times. The Romans celebrated the festival of Flora, the Roman goddess of flowers.  Ancient northern hemisphere spring festivals may have begun even earlier to celebrate the richness and fertility of this time of year.

A number of countries like Cuba and the former Soviet Union celebrate Workers’ Day on the first of May but May Day has been celebrated even earlier in the USA.  This day began in the 1880s when there was a drive to improve the lot of the working man.  Working conditions were severe.  10 to 16 hour days in unsafe conditions were common.  Frequent workplace death and injury led to books like Upton Sinclair’s “The Jungle” and Jack London’s “The Iron Heel”.

Workers felt that capitalism was for the benefit of their bosses.  The political process had become so controlled by big business and the bi-partisan political machines that tens of thousands of politicians left their parties, rebuffed the entire political process, which was seen as nothing more than protection for the wealthy, and created new groups throughout the country.

The goal was to put an end to the hierarchical structures (including government) that controlled industry and wipe away the bureaucratic political process. The aim was to give workers an eight hour work day and in the 1880s more than 300,000 workers in 13,000 businesses across the United States walked off their jobs in the first US May Day celebration.

Does that history sound familiar now?  Some things never change.

Politics have not changed all that much either.  The presidential election of 1880  (Republican, James A. Garfield – Democrat, Winfield Scott Hancock) began with the longest Republican convention in the party’s history.  There were three candidates but on the first ballot none were close to victory. After the thirty-fifth  ballot, two delegates switched their support to the new “dark horse” candidate, Representative James A. Garfield.  The bitterly divided Republicans chose Garfield.

The Presidential election was also highly contested but neither party had a clear plank on how they would improve the nation.  The contest was simply “Our man is better than your man”.

The Democrats campaigned on the character of the candidates and attacked Garfield for his connection with an earlier banking scandal.

The Republicans claimed that Hancock was uninformed on the issues, and gave critical speeches regarding his character.

Issues included:

* Immigration. This eventually led to the Chinese Exclusion Act, one of the most significant restrictions on free immigration in US history, prohibiting all immigration of Chinese laborers.

* Racial inclusion. The Republican party’s courtship of black voters threatened the white Democratic establishment.

* Labor rights and trade agreements.  Garfield’s campaigners called Democrats unsympathetic to the plight of industrial laborers, a group that benefited from a high protective tariff.

When all the ballots were counted, fewer than 2,000 votes separated Garfield and Hancock, the closest popular vote of any American presidential election before or since.

As Garfield entered office in March 1881, the Republican party schism that had been patched up for the election tore apart once more.  Within months Garfield was assassinated.

How does that history sound now?  Some things never change.

However many things do change as well, including my life when my global investing and business adventures began, five decades ago, when I joined Prudential Insurance Company in May 1966.

Then two years later, on May 1, 1968 I left the USA and arrived in Hong Kong May 2, 1968.

multi-currency-passport

passport2_25_07_2007_3.jpg

Here is my my first passport  and the first stamp issued May 2, 1968, allowing me to stay in Hong Kong until June 2, 1968.

I arrived in Hong Kong in the night, the tropical air so soft it was a velvet mist.  Thick evening scents in the fragrant harbor and mellow insects purring in rhythm with the cacophony of the great city!  What a an exotic adventure.

Kai Tak was Hong Kong’s airport then and being American born and bred, I knew nothing about investing aboard.

That was my first airplane trip, first time out of Oregon. Portland to Vancouver, Tokyo to Hong Kong.  I melted in my heavy woolen blazer, was weary and afraid but excited too. An incredible global investing journey had begun… and continues to this day.

I gained sales training at Prudential and used this to develop sales teams in Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Indonesia, Indonesia, Singapore and the Philippines at the same time so a month was plenty of time before I exited.

ecuador-global-investing

Here is one of my first sales teams… this one in Hong Kong led by John So Kwok Kee (far left).   You can guess which one I am!

I built teams from the north in Japan down through Indonesia.

I was 21 years old and had no idea how that trip would lead me throughout Asia for almost ten years and eventually led me to business and investing in Europe, London, Isle of Man, Florida, The Dominican Republic, North Carolina’s Blue Ridge and Ecuador.

In the last 50 years there has been a lot of change in our freedoms, and our goal at this site has been to share ideas that enhance three basic qualities of real freedom.

The first quality of real freedom is natural health.  None of us can be truly free until we wrest ourselves from the grip of the big pharma fueled health care system.

The second quality of real freedom is the ability to earn through service.  So many promises, purchasing power of money, savings, pensions, health care, social security, financial security, privacy, have all been broken so many times that no promise made by big business or big government can be trusted.  The only true form of wealth is to have some value, to be able to serve (or produce) in a profitable way.

The third quality is to mathematically seek investment value.   The only clear understanding of value of investments is that derived from mathematical based financial news rather than speculation based economic news.

A continual evolution based on these three qualities have helped Merri and me, our readers and our income continually grow… through good times and bad.

The reason we have progressed amidst never ending change is because we recognize that details and technologies change, but the fundamentals remain immutable.  “Plus ce change plus ce la meme chose”… the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Our business is totally online now… but the basics are the same… “to provide interesting, useful information and contacts that help make people’s lives better as they prosper from change”.

Life is a trip and we have an entire globe to enjoy the ride. Expanding our horizons beyond the education we gained within our local borders can help our visions penetrate the mists of tomorrow so we can adjust to gain opportunity in change and avoid dangers ahead.  This philosophy has reaped millions for Merri and me.  More important this approach has helped us follow our purpose and feel that we are doing more for the world than just making a buck.

The increased pace of change leaves all of us with a lot to do.

We feel healthier and more energetic than 50 years ago.  I might not be wiser… but am more experienced and seem in a better position than when I took that first trip to Hong Kong 48 years ago today.

We’ll keep looking for better ways to improve our natural health, energy and desire so we can profitably serve and wisely invest for the future.

Merri and I look forward to the year ahead… and we look forward to sharing it with you!

Gary

Make Safe More Profitable With the Silver Dip

May 2017 will be my 51st anniversary of being in the investment & finance business.  This is the 49th year since I started talking about international investing, (I started a Hong Kong mutual fund business in May 1968).

Since that time, my investing goals have been based around spotting contrasts and trends.

One current trend is that the valuations of US shares are dramatically overpriced  in every fundamental way.   The Morgan Stanley MSCI Index USA currently sells for 2.81 times book value, compared to the MSCI Europe Index that sells for 1.68 times book value.   The US PE Ratio is 21.2 versus 18.2 in Europe and the average US dividend yield is 2.15% versus 3.69% in Europe.  Shares in Europe on average are a far a better value.

When you use a long time dimension and diversify correctly, investing in value such as this has always created the highest profits and greatest safety.

I use this strategy because using a value strategy also takes the least work and has the lowest stress!

Then I look for ways to add spice and extra profit short term distortions.

For example in 2015 I spotted two distortions.  They were contrasts that  had reaped huge rewards for me and many of my readers 30 years ago.  I quickly issued two reports, one for each trend.  After a  year one of the distortions has already returned 210.58% in the last year.

A new contrast has even more potential in 2017.

One of the reports released, “Silver Dip 2015” looked at potential profits in silver because when the US stock market falls, the price of gold and silver rise.  I have been a gold bug for almost 50 years and spotted this fact long ago.

The “Silver Dip 2016” report reviewed a way to profit from silver and gold because of a mathematical, historical fact.  When the silver/gold ratio rises over 80, silver is more likely to rise than gold.  That ratio is even higher now than it was in 2015 so silver may not create the extraordinary profits this year.

The “Silver Dip 2017” offers a new ideal speculation.

The second distortion, explained below, has greater long term potential and all but guarantees short term profits in gold, silver and the currenct hot speculation.

There is no question that a long term correction is coming.  Only the full timing can be in doubt.  The question we must ask is, “Could the big break come in 2017 and could it break upon us right now?”  The answer is “Yes”.  When the bubble bursts, it can cause the perfect economic storm that makes a few investors, who are ready, rich.

I have been warning readers about this stock market correction (and how to profit instead of lose), since  January 28, 2015.

Zero interest is the sucker punch that can devastate millions of investors.  This is a Ponzi scheme where governments rob money from the future and spend it badly in the here and now.  Each downward economic wave of the last 30 years has created a larger mountain of debt that brings the world closer to an economy where there is no more future money to steal.  The only way governments can afford to borrow more is to take it for nothing.  That’s zero interest.  In worst case scenarios, governments can charge you to borrow your own money.  In Europe some bonds now have negative interest.

shouldn’t pay us anything.  Even worse they could charge a negative interest rate on our bank accounts and lock our money into the system.  The alternative is to invest in a risky, over priced stock market and morbidly weak currency.

Over priced stocks and an over priced US dollar are the third sucker punch!

To date we have been able at least to choose where and in what currencies we invest.  This is where we encounter the one-two-three punch.  The zero or negative interest rate destroys the purchasing power of our savings.  Capital controls lock us into a weak currency or market so we cannot take profits or protect our purchasing power from this inflation and currency loss.

Our savings, pensions and wealth can be floored by a combination of a falling stock market, crashing US dollar and inflation.

The purchasing power of the US dollar will fall.   Trading down is working in many ways.  Even if  pensions can pay what they have promised, the money in dollars won’t buy as much.  Coffee isn’t free with meals.  Many ordinary foods (tomatoes, peppers, almonds and walnuts as an example) and yes, maple syrup become luxuries.

Social Security won’t be as useful either, if it is paid at all.  Could Social Security really default?  The answer is “Yes, it could”.  An October 8, 2013 Reuters article at finance.yahoo said:  “President Barack Obama warned last week that Social Security benefits might not go out ‘on time’ if Congress does not raise the debt ceiling.  Should seniors and disabled Americans really be worried about their benefits if the U.S. government runs out of borrowing capacity later this month?  The answer is YES.”

I can make these predictions based on 30 year trends because I have been writing and teaching global investing for almost 50 years.  Long term experience helps me spot distortions and cycles that have been building for even as long as 30 years.   This experience has helped me steer my readers in the right direction again and again.

I invite you to join me and a small selective group who for the next year will participate in an intensive program called the Purposeful investing Course (Pi). The purpose of Pi is finding value to protect our savings, pensions, income and wealth from these two devastating economic conditions.

I’ve been watching this 30 year distortion take shape and believe that 2017 could very well be the year of a huge shift.

Slow, Worry Free, Good Value Investing

Stress, worry and fear are three of an investor’s worst enemies.  They create a Behavior Gap, that causes investors to underperform in any market good or bad.  The behavior gap is created by natural human responses to fear.   Pi helps create profitable strategies that avoid losses from this gap.

Lessons from Pi are based on the creation and management of a Primary Pi Model Portfolio, called the Pifolio.  There are no secrets about this portfolio except that it ignores the stories from economic news (often created by someone with vested interests) and is based mainly on good math that reveals the truth through financial news.

The Pifolio is a theoretical portfolio of MSCI Country Benchmark Index ETFs that cover all the good value markets using my (almost) 50 years of global experience and my study of the analysis of four mathematical investing geniuses (and friends).

The Pifolio analysis begins with a continual research of international major stock markets that compares their value based on:

#1:  Current book to price

#2:  Cash flow to price

#3:  Earnings to price

#4:  Average dividend yield

#5:  Return on equity

#6:  Cash flow return

#7:  Market history

We combine the research of several brilliant mathematicians and money managers with my years of investing experience.

This is a complete and continual study of what to do about the movement of international major and emerging stock markets.  I want to share this study throughout 2017 into 2018 with you.

This analysis forms the basis of a Good Value Stock Market Strategy.  The analysis is rational, mathematical and does not worry about short term ups and downs.  This strategy is easy for anyone to follow and use.  Pi reveals the best value markets and provides contacts to managers and analysts and Country Index ETFs so almost anyone can create and follow their own strategy.

A country ETF provides diversification and cost efficiency by spreading one simple, even small investment into a basket of equities in a good value stock market.  The costs are low and this type of ETF is one of the hardest for institutions to cheat.  Expense ratios for most ETFs are lower than those of the average mutual fund.

Little knowledge, time, management or guesswork are required.  The investment is simply a diversified portfolio of good value indices.  Investments in an index are like investments in all the shares of a good value market.

Pi opens insights to numerous long term cycles that most investors miss because they have not been investing long enough to see them.

For example, in the 1980s, a remarkable set of two economic circumstances helped anyone who spotted them become remarkably rich.  Some of my readers made enough to retire.  Others picked up 50% currency gains.  Then the cycle ended.  Warren Buffett explained the importance of this ending in a 1999 Fortune magazine interview.  He said:  Let me summarize what I’ve been saying about the stock market: I think it’s very hard to come up with a persuasive case that equities will over the next 17 years perform anything like—anything like—they’ve performed in the past 17!

I did well then, but always thought, “I should have invested more!”  Now those circumstances have come together and I am investing in them again.

The circumstances that created fortunes 30 years ago were an overvalued US market (compared to global markets) and an overvalued US dollar.  The two conditions are in place again!   There are currently ten good value (non US) developed markets,  plus 10 good value emerging markets.

Pi shows how to easily create a diversified, worry free portfolio in some of these good value markets using Country Index ETFs.

The current strength of the US dollar is a second remarkable similarity to 30 years ago.   The dollar rose along with Wall Street.  Profits came quickly over three years.  Then the dollar dropped like a stone, by 51%  in just two years.  A repeat of this pattern is growing and could create up to 50% extra profit if we start using strong dollars to accumulate good value stock market ETFs in other currencies.

This is the most exciting opportunity I have seen since we started sending our reports on international investing ideas more than three decades ago.  The trends are so clear that I have created a short, but powerful report “Three Currency Patterns for 50% Profits or More.”   This report shows how to earn an extra 50% from currency shifts with even small investments.  I kept the report short and simple, but included links to 153 pages of  Good Value Stock Market research and Asset Allocation Analysis.

The report shows 20 good value investments and a really powerful tactic that shows the most effective and least expensive way to accumulate these bargains in large or even very small amounts (less than $5,000).  There is extra profit potential of at least 50% so the report is worth a lot.

This report sells for $29.95 but you’ll receive the report, “Three Currency Patterns For 50% Profits or More” FREE when you subscribe to Pi.

Plus get the $39.95 report, “The Silver Dip 2017” free.

With investors watching global stock markets bounce up and down, many missed two really important profit generating events.  The price of silver dipped below $14 an ounce as did shares of the iShares Silver ETF (SLV).   The second event is that the silver gold ratio hit 80 and has remained near this level.

These two events are a strong sign to invest in precious metals.

I updated the special report now “Silver Dip 2017” about a leveraged speculation that can increase the returns in a safe portfolio by as much as eight times.  The purpose of the report is to share my 30 years of experience speculating and investing in gold and silver.

The low price of one commodity offers special value now so I want to send you this report because the “Silver Dip 2017” reveals how to gain enormous profit potential in the year ahead.

Save $428.95 If You Act Now

Subscribe to the first year of the Personal investing Course (Pi).  The annual fee is $299, but to introduce you to this online course that is based on real time investing, I am knocking $102 off the subscription.  Plus you receive FREE the $29.95 report “Three Currency Patterns For 50% Profits or More”, the $27  report “Silver Dip 2015” and our latest $297 online Value Investing Seminar for a total savings of $428.95.

Triple Guarantee

Enroll in Pi.  Get the first monthly issue of Pi and the report “Three Currency Patterns For 50% Profits or More” and the online Value Investing Seminar right away. 

#1:  I guarantee you’ll learn ideas about investing that are unique and can reduce stress as they help you enhance your profits through slow, worry free purposeful investing.

If you are not totally happy, simply let me know.

#2:  I guarantee you can cancel your subscription within 60 days and I’ll refund your subscription fee in full, no questions asked.

#3:  I guarantee you can keep “Three Currency Patterns for 50% Profits or More” and “Silver Dip 2015” plus the Value Investing Seminar as my thanks for trying.

You have nothing to lose except the fear.   You gain the ultimate form of financial security as you reduce risk and increase profit potential.

Subscribe to a Pi annual subscription for $197 and receive all the above.

Gary

 

 

Ecuador Investing & Business Idea


Here is an Ecuador investing and  business ideas for Ecuador or anywhere you live.

In a moment, I am going to show you how to own this 16 room hotel in Otavalo for almost nothing… maybe even free.

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First let’s look at a business idea for this hotel… rootlessness… a growing global problem.

Problems create opportunity so there is business opportunity in rootlessness.

Technology has given mankind the ability to work, live and invest globally… a wonderful benefit.   Yet this mobility has created a problem as well.

One of my messages many years ago (2002) outlined that there would be a growing market for friendship in this modern era.

That message said: The market for friendship has to grow because technology has made society so  mobile. I for example have lost nearly every single really good friend from school.  I haven’t seen most of the friends I grew up with for forty five years. I imagine they still live in Portland, Oregon, but maybe not. They might all have become travelers like myself. Out of a six pack of school buddies, Steve is the only one with whom I keep in touch.

When I moved to North Carolina, I visited the local car mechanic named Jay Dee to have some work done on my 1986 Suzuki Samari Jeep. This is the perfect farm car but often needs work.  Jay Dee’s garage is a barn by his house and local people sort of collect around that barn to shoot the breeze, spit a little tobacco and talk over old times. “Remember old Johnny Blevins and that time he threw you in the creek,” one of them might say. “Well darn that must a been fifty years ago.”

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My Samari… 23 years old and only 62,000 original miles.

I love being with these wonderful mountain people and their easy going, friendly ways. They have such deep roots and ties and are comfortable and at ease with their friends. They know who they are, where they are and who their friends are because they have been with them their entire lives. These people aren’t hanging around Jay Dee just to get their cars fixed. They are enjoying a ritual of friendship that has united them since they were kids.

I love this! My friendships are scattered and far flung all over the world. I sometimes don’t get to see my friends for years!

A huge segment (much of the wealthiest) of the population no longer lives where they were brought up. They have lost touch with their roots.  The more technology removes us from our origins, the more the market for togetherness and friendship grows.

Friendship is an extension of togetherness and can develop around many themes. For the mountain folk of North Carolina or anyone who remains rooted in their birthplace the theme is mostly “down home”.

These friendships are tight and if you have ever heard the phrase “You ain’t from around here are ya, boy,” you have experienced the reverse side of this type of friendship. The implication is that with these long term, locally based friendships, the only way to be a friend is to have been there for years.

Some of the years I lived in Gloucestershire, England were spent in a tiny village named Chalford. I lived over  a local pub there, “The Mechanics Arms.” Though I was a newcomer to the area I was accepted as an old timer because of family ties. One man in his sixties, who visited the pub every night however wasn’t quite part of the crowd.

Many of the locals talked about him as the new man in town. I was surprised later to learn he had lived in Chalford for nearly thirty years!  The locals would always view him as less trustworthy because he had not been born and raised there. Childhood experiences were the basis of their deepest friendships.

Many of us will never have this type of long term familiarity friendship.We have moved around too much. This creates markets for many types of new friendships.

Networking is a form of business friendship. The theme of the friendship is scratch my back and perhaps I can scratch yours or we will both be better off scratching each others’ backs. Such friendships can be local, state or country wide or as mine span the globe. They can be very informal or very formal.

The market for formal friendships has already exploded.  Incredible growth of support groups such as AA are a sign of the momentum in the friendship market. Such groups offer a format for formal friendships and range from disease support groups to abused support groups. Each offers an organized way to have friends. The growth of these groups is not because there are more problems than thirty years ago. The growth is because of the increasing market for friendships.

We can see this trend spreading everywhere. For example one telephone company has recognized this growing trend and has successfully built its business around the idea of calling “family and friends.

This thought (that a market for friendships would grow) was correct.  We see this on the internet with one of the biggest trends being social networking sites.

A recent New York Times article, “Invisible Immigrants, Old and Left With ‘Nobody to Talk To” by Patricia Leigh Brown reveals a sliver of this problem.

Here is an excerpt from this article:   They gather five days a week at a mall called the Hub, sitting on concrete planters and sipping thermoses of chai. These elderly immigrants from India are members of an all-male group called The 100 Years Living Club. They talk about crime in nearby Oakland, the cheapest flights to Delhi and how to deal with recalcitrant daughters-in-law.

Together, they fend off the well of loneliness and isolation that so often accompany the move to this country late in life from distant places, some culturally light years away.

“If I don’t come here, I have sealed lips, nobody to talk to,” said Devendra Singh, a 79-year-old widower. Meeting beside the parking lot, the men were oblivious to their fellow mall rats, backpack-carrying teenagers swigging energy drinks.

In this country of twittering youth, Mr. Singh and his friends form a gathering force: the elderly, who now make up America’s fastest-growing immigrant group. Since 1990, the number of foreign-born people over 65 has grown from 2.7 million to 4.3 million — or about 11 percent of the country’s recently arrived immigrants. Their ranks are expected to swell to 16 million by 2050. In California, one in nearly three seniors is now foreign born, according to a 2007 census survey.

Now let’s look at this 16 room hotel in Otavalo that you can have for almost nothing… maybe even free and how it could offer a business that solves this problem.

First, let me detail the hotel and why a fabulous bargain has come up… and how this hotel can fit into the friendship market.

This  is an really good Ecuador income opportunity, a…

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hotel for sale in Otavalo.

The owners have had this on the market for a number of years at one million dollars. We thought this price was too high and never wrote about it.

Earlier this year they dropped the price to $750,000 and offered us $150,000 commission if we sold it. I wrote then:  The owners offered us a $150,000 commission to sell the hotel. We are not brokers and do not take commission so our reply was “cut the price for our readers”!  This would place the price at $600,000… an interesting value.

$600,000 may have been interesting but the owner now just emailed us and dropped the price to $495,000.  This places the price beyond  an interesting value into the bargain range.

Plus the owners again offered us a commission.  We do not take commissions so whatever (how much commission was not clear) amount they would pay could be deducted from this price.

This makes the hotel a real bargain.

At $750,000 the commission of $150,000 was 20%.  We don’t know of course about the commission, and I didn’t want to wait to verify this because this hotel is valuable, beautiful and it could  work out at about $35 a foot on the building and leaves you the land (which right next to Otavalo market is worth a lot).

Yet there is more. I believe you can get the land and the 16 room hotel for almost nothing.

I’ll explain how below.

First: the hotel details. The hotel is right next to Otavalo Market, one of the largest tourist attractions in Ecuador.

The property has these characteristics:  Appx. 30,000 sq. feet of  land and 12,000 sq.  feet of  building in 3 apartments and 16 hotel rooms.

Property Details:  The property consists of approximately 30,000 square feet of land, with trees, gardens and many types of exotic birds.  The gardens…

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are large… well groomed and…

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have a wonderful patio.

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Ma too likes it there.

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There is approximately 12,000 square feet of solid brick and cement construction.

On the property, there is plenty of room for expansion and development, especially in a town where there is absolutely no land left to develop.  The building is built in the old colonial style with finely crafted hardwood arched windows and doors, rustic floor tile and traditional clay-tiled roof.  The building is constructed according to U.S. anti-seismic standards.

The owner claims this is one of the best built constructions in Otavalo—and one of the prettiest in the city!

The building boasts excellent water pressure on all four floors. (Please don’t pooh pooh this quality!) The building has a powerful, propane gas-fueled boiler system capable of producing up to 700 gallons of hot water a day.  With access to the land/building from two streets, the property has frontage on 3 streets, which have been newly paved by the City of Otavalo.

Characteristics:  16 rooms, large social area (restaurant), large working kitchen, two medium-sized apartments, one large penthouse apartment, small building in back (approximately 250 square meters) that serves as a laundry room and storage facility, which also has a full bathroom and a working fireplace.  This could easily be converted into a small rental property.  Adjacent, yet private, to the main property, and which consists of 350 square meters of our total property, is a working area and parking garage (which can accommodate approximately 6 cars), with clothes lines, and general storage area.

First floor: Consists of large working kitchen, with back door exit to outdoor enclosed pantry/food storage room, laundry area and herb garden.  There is a large dining room (approximately 2,500 square feet) with excellent working fireplace, and space to comfortably entertain 60 or so people.

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Reception.

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Restaurant is beautiful also.

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The dining room leads outside onto the tiled patio and garden where there are tables and chairs for serving and relaxing, and this area may be used to accommodate another 30 or so people.  Also on the first floor there are 8 rooms which have served as hotel rooms, each 55 X 45 feet  in size with large bathrooms.

All rooms face out into the garden and the property is in front of Mount  Imbabura.   Hundreds of hummingbirds and exotic birds roam the grounds.

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Patio seen from one of the three apartments.

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Hotel room…

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shots.

Second floor: There are two spacious apartments, each about 1,100 square feet in size, with glass windows looking down onto the garden.

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Apartment #1 view…

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Apartment#1 bedroom.

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Apartment #1 Living room

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and kitchen.

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Each apartment has a large bathroom and a kitchenette with small balconies in the back.  Also on the second floor there are 8 more rooms, equal to the rooms on the first floor, that open onto a balcony over-looking the garden.

Apartment #2 living room

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Bedroom.

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bathroom.

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Third floor:  There is a very large “penthouse” apartment, approximately 2,250 square feet with large glass windows and a large balcony overlooking the garden.  This apartment has one bathroom with a small adjacent room that may be converted into a sauna, large spacious kitchen and living room, two large bedrooms, and a large working fireplace.

Penthouse…

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views.

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Penthouse.

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Penthouse fireplace.

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Kitchen.

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Penthouse bedroom.

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Extra room.

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Penthouse bedroom #2.

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The Roof: The penthouse apartment has stairs that lead to the roof, where there are two 5,000 gallon reserve tanks for storing water (if needed), as well as more storage space.  As stated before, there is excellent water pressure on all 4 floors.  Also includes a solar hot water system which connects into the boiler system.

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Two 5,000 gallon water storage tanks…

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plus solar water heater.

This is an excellent facility with wonderful grounds in a high priced area..

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Let’s look at the owner’s explanation of why they have lowered the price… then we’ll see how to get this hotel for almost nothing.

Hello Merri and Gary,  This is Margaret from Ali Shungu in Otavalo. I have been living up here on the mountain for about 6 months full time, going back and forth to the Hotel.  I feel better up here in my little house with my projects.   I have been recovering from an illness and have been in the hospital in Quito. They said that if this diverticulitis does not clear up, and it has been bad for about 6 months with 3 months of vomiting, fever, etc.,–that I will need an operation to remove it.  I’m drinking all kinds of herbs and aloe vera cactus and only boiled simple foods, and hoping to heal without an operation.  Did 2 rounds of antibiotics, might have to do more…….I will say though, that the hospital bill was not that bad in Voz Andes for all the tests that I had and treatments, etc.   I will now take care of myself more, and do more praying!  I might need intravenous antibiotics but I do not want to go back to the hospital in Quito.

There you have it… a owner whose health no longer allows them to run the hotel nor wait out a high priced buyer.

Here is how to get this 16 room hotel for almost nothing. I believe that the three apartments, if separated from the hotel and sold on their own, are worth near the price of the hotel.   I do not know the Otavalo real estate market so well…but I have seen the apartments and penthouse and they are exquisite.

If they are and if you can buy this for hotel in the $400,000 range… this means the 16 room hotel, the grounds and the restaurant are almost free.

This will require some negotiating, some work and legal work  (Ecuador lawyers are not very expensive)… but could provide one heck of a deal.

We have put our Ecuador Living subscribers in touch with the sellers.  To gain this contact information you can subscribe to Ecuador Living here.

If the hotel is not under offer, we’ll show it on our upcoming October Andean Real Estate tour.    See tour details here.

Merri and I are not involved financially in any way with this offer.  We have not looked at the hotel’s financial accounts, legal situation, titles, nor had an engineering inspection, so be sure to take all normal precautions if you are interested.  Especially look at the labor obligations you’ll absorb.

Our recommendation for those who are interested in Ecuador is to come visit first… look around… rent and stay awhile… before you buy.  One reason for this recommendation is that when you are here awhile you’ll see bargains… like this and I believe for the reasons stated that Hotel Ali Shungu is now a bargain.

Now let’s see how this creates opportunity from the problem of rootlessness.

Americans and Canadians are flocking to Ecuador.  I know.  Our Ecuador Living business is going wild.  The subscription pace has almost doubled recently and the request for rentals in this area has skyrocketed past our ability to keep up!

The demand is especially strong at the lower income level… those who are retiring and can no longer have a decent life in Canada or the US… especially in places where there is winter sun.

There people are isolated… often not speaking Spanish and with little to do.   So Turn this hotel into a residence for gringos. Provide free internet… US papers…. weekly Spanish lessons… a support program… group tours, travel assistance etc.

There is one more value.  Yesterday’s message How to Make Money in this Multi Currency Era explained how, due to the falling US dollar, Ecuador real estate has become a 10% better value since this last February.

Gary

The greatest asset of all is the ability to earn globally in many currencies.

This is why we are providing a special three for one offer with our  course Tangled Web… How to Have an Internet Business that can help you create your own internet business.

Our emailed course “Tangled Webs We Weave – How to Have Your Own Web Based Business” is a continuing educational program.  You receive the first 28 lessons when you enroll and a new lesson every week or two.

This course teaches how to create a web based business and is developed from the ongoing experiences that we have from our successful and profitable internet business.

This course is well worth the enrollment fee of $299… but currently you also receive two additional courses FREE.

The other two courses are #1: International Business Made EZ, and #2: Self Fulfilled – How to be a Self Publisher.

These two courses have sold for $398 and thousands have paid this price. We add them to your course at no added cost as I believe they will help you develop a better business in these crucial times..

Even Better Get All three Courses Free

To make this offer even more compelling,  I am giving everyone who enrolls in our North Carolina or Ecuador International Business & Investing seminar in October or November all three courses, “Tangled Web… How to Have an Internet Business Course,”  “Self Fulfilled- How to be a Self Publisher” and “International Business Made EZ” free.

Join us with Jyske Bank and my webmaster David Cross in West Jefferson North Carolina. Learn more about global investing, how to have an international business at the seminar.

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina with our webmaster  David Cross & Thomas Fischer of JGAM

Or head south to Ecuador!

October 16-18 Ecuador Southern coastal tour

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Tour

Oct. 25-26 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Join us with Peter Laub of Jyske Global Asset Management in Ecuador. Learn more about global investing, how to have an international business at the seminar.

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador Seminar

Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Join us in the mountains and at the sea. Attend more than one seminar and tour and save even more plus get the three emailed courses free.

Attend any two Ecuador seminar 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

Read the entire article Invisible Immigrants, Old and Left With ‘Nobody to Talk To here.

Ecuador Longevity & Smalltown US Value


Ecuador has many valleys of longevity… but it is more than just the valley that enhances the long lives there. There are at least three longevity secrets.

Because of big value changes, in a moment we’ll look at real estate value in Smalltown USA compared to Ecuador property.

First, the three Ecuador longevity secrets.

Secret #1 is a restricted diet with a reduced caloric intake.

Secret #2 is live with ritual! Those who live extra ordinarily long lives seem to share this common trait. Whatever they do they do in moderation, in a very similar way and with great gusto. For example, if they drink an ounce of whiskey every day, at six o clock, they do not do this at five some days and eight others. They do not have a half ounce one day and two another. They tend to have one ounce at six p.m. every day. This instills discipline, keeps life simple (very important) and allows the body to get used to doing whatever it is it has to do.

Take Chris Mortensen one of the oldest documented men in the 1990s who at 113 said of his weekly cigar, “If you take my weekly cigar away from I am going to die”. The anticipation and ritual of whatever pleasure he received from this was far more life giving than the stress. The world’s oldest documented woman in the 1990s, Jeanne Clement, at age 122 drank cognac and ate a pound of chocolate a week (but never two).

One good ritual is to do EZ exercises that keep all the muscle groups flexible… such as the sun salute.

sun-salute

Here…

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are the…

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postures…

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of…

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of…

sun-salute

sun-salute

the…

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Sun…

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Salute.

sun-salute

You can see another example of the Sun Salute See https://www.garyascott.com/images/sunsalute.jpg

Ecuador shamans also exercise their legs.  One thing  I do when meeting an Ecuador shaman is observe his legs.  My experience is that the most knowledgeable taita yatchaks exercise their legs. They believe them to be man’s root to the earth… channels for the earth energy.

ecuador-shaman

I also notice that they walk barefoot a lot.

This taita yatchak is very elderly but his leg muscles are still highly developed and he is easily walking on rocks.

So…  whenever we can, Merri and I take off the insulation between us and earth and walk barefoot.

ecuador-shamans

An EZ leg exercise taught to me by an Ecuador shaman is called the Llama Walk.

This exercise…

LLama-walk

helps strengthen the legs.

sun-salute

Bend one knee to touch the heel of the other foot, but…

sun-salute

do not perform too many to start.  Otherwise you may have some very sore legs the next day.

Remember start EZ.

Longevity Secret #3 is to remain independent, challenged, active and needed. One of the most important features found in societies where residents are long lived is that old age is revered.

People at age 100, even 110 can still active and working!

I collect stories of long lived people… such as Max Zimmer of Los Angeles who came to the US from Austria in 1911 with only a two dollar bill. At age 103 he still had the same two-dollar bill and had built and still ran a multimillion-dollar business.

This is one reason why Merri and I focus on turning passions into profit!

Having something fun and interesting to do every day that also erases financial worries makes it fun to remain alive.

The greatest asset of all, is the ability to earn wherever you live, brings everlasting wealth. This is why we offer our course Tangled Web… How to Have an Internet Business.

SmallTown USA

Today’s message was posted much later than the norm because all last week we were in Oregon helping my sister and daughter get my mom out of the hospital system where she has been since April.  We were pretty busy taking her to assisted living homes, buying her new furniture and getting her moved from her house of 42 years to her new apartment.  We managed to get this all in and send my message at its normal time, but finally yesterday the Portland-LA-Cincinnati-Tri Cities trip threw us off schedule.

I mention this because I am sure that many of you who love Ecuador (or the idea of living abroad) have many ties (as we do) here in the US.   So it takes time to make your move or the best you can do is to live abroad (as we do) part time.

Though we have always lived a global life,  last February I wrote in an article Ecuador Shamans & Truth, why Merri and I are redirecting some of our focus back to the US from Ecuador.

Never Fear! The US, especially Small Town USA, is a great place to be.   Fortunately we sold all of our Florida property at the top of the market, in March 2007, so since this spring we have been looking to buy back a winter home.

There have been some substantial changes in real estate value since 2007 as you will see  below.

We find that Florida real estate prices are still falling!

Merri writes about this process and one house we have been tracking.

This house is in Winter Haven, Florida.

On the Road again…

For all of you out there who continue to ask, “Bought anything yet in Florida?”…the answer is NO.

We’ve had a few blips on the screen with necessary trips to Oregon for Gary’s mom and courses that we’ve conducted plus our daughter, Francesca, home from Africa for a visit.  Then Jacob, just finishing up law school, came over to NC for the summer.

It’s been a busy time but a good and productive one…but absolutely no time for house hunting.

We really are serious about buying that home on the lake in Florida…and we do have to have it by November.  I’ve been feeling guilty and a little nervous because there was no time to spend on the search.

Today, I finally had a tiny bit of time and jumped right back in.

Here’s what I discovered, of the original 21 we were considering from April, only one is sold or for some reason is off the market….nothing really lost there for sure.

The others have dropped in price since I’ve been looking $50,000, $70,000, $100,000, $300,000 and one a whopping $495,000!

Hey, I ceased berating myself for not spending enough time on this situation.

Here’s one below which we will not be buying as Gary would rather be on a smaller lake rather than this extremely large lake but wow is it beautiful and look at the price!

smalltown-USA

Side view.

We looked at it in April and thought the neighborhood was charming, wonderful for long private walks (Interlaken) and it has a feeling of being a settled neighborhood.  We loved the features of this house with its guest quarters (something high on our list), boat dock, and ambiance.

When I first spotted it, it reminded me of a house that we knew and loved tucked on a hillside in the French Rivieria…charming, low key and so so pretty.  (Actually, I fell in love with this house at its original offering price of $599,000.)

smalltown-USA

Lake view and dock.

It’s in Winter Haven in Central Florida which offers proximity to Tampa Airport (an excellent small airport with kindness and frequent flights) and not too far from Orlando Airport.  The town of Winter Haven is filled with lakes and seems very pleasant.  The county boasts 554 lakes and the famous Chain of Lakes…16 navigable together.  Winter Haven is also 146′ above sea level.  SmallTown USA with less than 25,000 people.

The house is situated on huge corner lot with 13,000 + sq.’ and the house (although not huge) has that wonderful guest quarters!

Here it is…straight out of a James Bond movie…at the new this morning’s price of $369,000 which probably could translate into $299,000.

smalltown-USA

I believe this is good value.

smalltown-USA

View of the lake from one of the patios.

I like the broker a lot, Christiana Bulow, who sent it to me.  She is very good about listening to what you like, and then sending you EVERY single listing in your area of choice that fits your requirements. Also, you can just click on your “Favorites” and she’ll keep those and do exactly what she did this morning, send me one of my Favorites with a Reduced Price!  It’s fun and helpful to just look at each one of them…I saved this one on her easy to use system back in April…also from a distance this helps to learn a lot.

Her service is a concierge service…very unique and interesting…which offers a number of great details including a free moving truck, free termite inspection and a Buyer’s Guarantee.

You can reach Christina Bulow:  Christina-vwbx30547239@centralflhomesnow.com    Her phone # is (863) 207-3929.

smalltown-USA

Maybe you’ll love this one…sorry we do love it and of course Gary loves the price but it’s the wrong situation for us…so I’ll keep looking and report back!  Merri

Here is the change in value we need to consider now. In 2007 the house above would probably have cost a million dollars.  Since 2007 real estate prices in Ecuador have risen as they have dropped in the US.

This is not to say that Ecuador no longer has good real estate value.  More work in finding good prices on Ecuador real estate is required.  For example yesterday’s message South Ecuador Beach Property looks at how to have a beach condo for $35,000.  Yet this is a riskier start up way to own real estate.

This is not to say that Ecuador does not offer a much lower cost of living… better climate… a happier gentler lifestyle… just one must continually examine value… and now Florida real estate prices may be comparable to real estate prices in Ecuador.

Whether you head south to Ecuador or just to Florida we wish you longevity and good value!

Gary

Your own small, global, independent business because this can bring freedom, fulfillment and a longer life.A clear mind and healthy body are vital assets… plus a second language is a powerful diversification tool.

This is why I am willing to pay you $300 to attend either our Ecuador Super Thinking plus Spanish seminar in September or our North Carolina International Business & Investing seminar in October.  Sign up for either seminar and I will email you our Tangled Web… How to Have an Internet Business Course (offered at $299) free plus I’ll knock an extra dollar off your seminar fee…. to round up the $300 savings.

Here are comments from one group who just conducted a seminar at our hotel in Ecuador wrote about the way we help: Wow.  We had such an amazing time in Ecuador.  That includes me, my colleague Jackie, the instructors, and all of the attendees.  Everyone enjoyed themselves immensely, and really, we owe it to you and El Meson for making it all run smoothly.  We felt so welcomed and well-treated.  Thank you.I’d also like to say that both Mauricio and Alberto went out of their way to make sure we felt comfortable.  The bus was always there for us when we were to leave, they hopped to it whenever we wanted to plan something, they made suggestions for things to do in town, and were very gracious and pleasing to be around.  Mauricio was particularly helpful when it came to making trips to nearby villages.  He was open and sharing with information about the ceremonies and ways of life of the Kichwa, and always willing to answer questions.  What a privilege for us, and a real delight. I’m hoping we’ll get to stay at Meson again some time. Thanks again.

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Super Thinking + Spanish Course

Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Learn more about global investing, how to have an international business and diversification in Ecuador at the seminar.

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina with our webmaster  David Cross & Thomas Fischer of JGAM

October 16-18 Ecuador Southern coastal tour (early sign up before Sept. 1, $499 per person).

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Tour

Oct. 25-26 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador Seminar

Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

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

Retire in Ecuador – Out of Cities


Retire in Ecuador… our wherever…out of town because isolated places may be out of the box bargains.

retire-in-ecuador-remote

Merri and I have purchased many isolated places.  Here is a shot from our North Carolina farm.

A reader, wanting to know whether to retire in Ecuador or not sent this note last week:

Dear Gary,

I have noticed that you have mentioned (a few times) that you and Merri are not residents of Ecuador —– and you do not want to become residents. Would you be kind enough to explain what brought you to this decisions? Thank you,

My reply was “Mainly grandkids”.

Yet there is much more.

Merri and I live both in Ecuador and North Carolina because we love the people, the way of life, the land and the value.

We did not choose Ecuador because it is outside the US, nor Ashe county because it is in America.

We chose them because they are both in our opinion great places to be… and they are isolated.

Change alters the value of places.

When I grew up living in the suburbs of Portland Oregon, I could walk miles to school when I was eight.  We let our doors unlocked.

When I was a young man, huge cities were great places to be.  I lived in Hong Kong, San Francisco and London as well as portland… at times walking late at night in many parts of the city alone.  Cities were fun!

Now cities are much more dangerous and crowded and inconvenient.

Traffic from my mom’s suburban Oregon house (the same one for 50 years) to downtown Portland is horrid and she has to double lock all her windows.

Great places bring opportunity and joy in our lifestyles… but great places change and now there are double benefits in Isolation

I have steadily increased my investments in three seemingly isolated places; high in the Ecuador Andes, in a remote Pacific fishing village and in Ashe County North Carolina.

I chose each for the same reasons.  They are isolated but have good internet and reasonable access to a good airport

There are several reasons why change has put a premium on isolation.

retire-in-ecuador-remote

Merri and I have purchased many isolated places.  Here is a shot from our Ecuador Hacienda.

One reason is food.  Ecuador is a small agricultural country and as such, huge national distribution systems are not required to feed the population.  The food is fresher.  Preservatives are not as required.

The residents in the Blue Ridge of Ashe county know how to feed themselves as well.  Our farm is dotted with old homesteads where the dwellers lived mostly off the land… not that long ago… so people here know how to create their own food supply if need be.

The second reason is that the cost of living is still low compared to cities in Ecuador or the US.

The third reason is health.  There are no big factories… the air is fresh… water is quite pure… and you are not surrounded by crowds… increased risk of crime and such.

Plus (fourth) lifestyle benefits are great. No traffic jams… not much traffic noise… far less stress.

Fifth, property prices are low compared to alternatives… yet for the reasons stated above… they offer potential of appreciation as more and more people want to get out of the cities and burbs.

At the beginning of this millennium I recommended investing in Ashe County, North Carolina and did so myself.

In the 10 years since, even with the real estate crash, the price of land in the area has risen five to 10 times. Yet these prices remain low compared to other similar areas.

The small towns in the area are safe, the people friendly.   Life is still good.  People still wave when you drive by.

I can now eat a hearty breakfast in Jefferson, North Carolina (our nearest town of any sort) for under five dollars.   Also when we go out to breakfast we can leave the house unlocked and cars, trucks and jeeps parked with the keys in them.

9/11 changed people’s values. Family, friends and quieter, more peaceful life is more important than before.

Having these fine qualities is harder to achieve in downtown Manhattan or Central Chicago or in the heart of L.A.

Life in America is changing due to the difficult economic and social times. There is a return to simplicity and the value of these small towns and their honest core values will grow.

If the economy suddenly recovers and the world’s economy rises, small towns will still not lose their appeal. The world’s population continues to grow.   People always want what they perceive they have lost… freedom from crowds, traffic jams, pollution and the hassle of city life.   I believe these qualities will grow in value.

Today, the portable computer, internet and cell phone have changed all the rules of real estate. The old maxim is still true that the three most important aspects that affect a properties value are location, location, location, but technology alters which locations will have greater value!

retire-in-ecuador-remote

Merri and I have purchased many isolated places.  Here is a shot of the land around the village where we have our Ecuador hotel.

Take for example, my own career in writing about international investing.

When I began, I had to live in London. This was where all the knowledge and information was held. To give timely advice I had to be there. Then as phone rates dropped and the fax came along, I was able to leave the congested city and move to Naples, Florida, then a sleepy fishing village and still have access to the data I would need. Finally as Naples became crowded, because of the Internet, we were able to move to isolated farms both here and in Ecuador and still have access to any international investment information.

I can call up market details, specific shares, global news, regardless of how remote I am.

retire-in-ecuador-remote

Merri and I have purchased many isolated places.  Here is a shot of the empty beah near our Ecuador beach condos.

Here is the key point.

The primary factor of real estate’s value used to be physical accessibility to many people. This factor is shifting to accessibility of information.

Remote places are gaining a new value if they have access to information.

Ashe county which adjoins Virginia and Tennessee was established and named after Samuel Ashe in 1799. It is often known as the Lost Province because until recently hardly anyone knew of the place.

The county seat is Jefferson and the county has a land area of 426.16 miles but only a population of 22,209 people. This population is wide spread as well. The only towns are Jefferson (1,300 population), West Jefferson (1,002) and Lansing (183).

This is a totally rural area with three commercial crops, Christmas trees, timber and tobacco.

There are several small factories in the county but tourist activities such as canoeing on the new river, scenic drives though Southern Appalachian Wilderness, leaf looking and camping.

Ashe county is isolated but sits almost equidistant from the north and south of the east coast of the United States.  We almost the same distance from Florida and  Maine.

Here are the signs I see that suggest to me that this area will boom:

1. The prices here are a fraction of the counties north and south.

2. The first cappuccino machines have arrived in Jefferson. When we arrived there was nothing like this and it was a dry county.  Now there are smart cafes… wine bars and art gallerys.

3. Prices as mentioned have already risen.

4. The major road from I-77 has being widened to four and even six lanes.

5. Wal Mart built a super store.

6. The first golf course community has been a success in Jefferson.

7. Lowes has open a large DIY store.

There are some other great benefits here. The nearest airports for commercial flights is Tri-Cities Tennessee.   This s one of the easiest airports I have ever checked into…a 15 check in allowee. Parking right at the front door and often the policemen will hel yu haul in your bags.  Yet this regional airport is just over a half hour to Atlanta or Cincinnati.

There is a great college town Boone just 45 minutes away, a chic, resort area, Blowing Rock the same distance and real cities, like Charlotte two hours drive.

Yet as isolated as we are we have great DSL broadband so I am as connected as if I lived in Manhattan.

This makes me more effective than some businesses in the center of major cities, as I avoid the delays from traffic jams, crowds, smog, missed parking places and crowds.

You can take advantage of great isolated places to be by creating an internet business and looking for places like Ashe county north Carolina that are short on people but long on data resources.

Retire in Ecuador because Ecuador real estate is inexpensive.

Merri and I have purchased a lot of Ecuador real estate in remote places as well.

See why at Ecuador Real Estate is Inexpensive

Wherever you plan to retire in Ecuador at home or elsewhere, think about leaving the maddening crowd.  Isolated places may be the bargains of the future.

Gary

Our 2009 course and tour schedule.

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

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

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.

Buying Tickets To Ecuador


Buying Tickets To Ecuador

There are many reasons to buy a ticket to Ecuador… miles of sunny empty beach is one.

ecuador-air tickets

When I took my first flight to Hong Kong 41 years ago, I was 21 years old and few on a cheap ticket that was called a student fare.

While in Hong Kong I met a travel agent. Charlie Kwok was his name and he had an office in the Miramar Hotel, Kowloon, not far from the Star Ferry. Charlie was the master of the low cost air fare and over the next half decade he amazed me with some of his great deals…. Especially for people under age  27.

Next decade in London, John Dragonas, a Greek travel agent continued showing the way to get deals. Back then they had VUSA (Visit USA) where prices were really low.

By then Merri and I had met and she became the maven of amazing air fare deals.

In short I have always enjoy incredibly low costs air fares.  However Merri added another dimension because not all low cost air fares are great.

I recall one flight Honk Kong to Portland Oregon that Charlie Kwok arranged… really cheap, because it was a charter with two empty seats and otherwise full of doctors returning from Thailand. What Charlie forgot to mention was that the actual fare went Hong Kong, Seattle, Minneapolis, San Francisco and then I had a connection back to Portland… adding about 24 hours to the flight!

ecuador-air tickets

There are many reasons to buy a ticket to Ecuador… such as the high Andean lakes.

John in London ignored the human part of travel to get the cost down once as well… a special VUSA fare. Merri and I wanted to fly London, Miami, Chicago, Portland, London.

To get the lowest fare, the actual flight turned out to be London -Denver, Miami- Denver, Chicago-Denver, Portland-Denver, London…or something like that… low fare but not a great deal.

ecuador-air tickets

There are many reasons to buy a ticket to Ecuador… including wonderful colonial architecture.

It was about then that Merri took over finding our fares and she is good…  Let me be humble and say she may be the best. Recently our son visited us from London, Charlotte, London for $17.  That is correct, seventeen dollars.

ecuador-air tickets

There are many reasons to buy a ticket to Ecuador… big cities and…

ecuador-air tickets

quaint villages like… Cotacachi shown here.

Recently one of our articles Ecuador Air Fare Update mentioned a $316 Miami Quito fare that Merri found and explained that readers should visit www.farecompare.com

So many readers asked for help on how to get this fare that I asked Merri to prepare an article on how she does it.

Here it is:

Buying Air Tickets

Gary often asks me to write about how I buy airline tickets and especially those to Ecuador…so this is the first in a series of hints including safety, price, ease…

Well, first of all…it’s a tricky business for sure. And to top it all off, it rarely is quick and easy.  I start out with that in mind and sometimes days later I’m still at it!  But there is a pattern that I always use that helps me sort from the beginning the good, bad and the ugly.

Malcolm Gladwell’s newest book, “The Outliers, The Story of Success” clearly states that most people are really good at something, really successful after about 10,000 hours.  Well, for sure I have my 10,000 hours in on travel and tickets.  For over 4 years, Gary and I crossed the Atlantic commuting from our home in London to our home in Naples, Fl every three weeks.  It was always different, always a surprise and very often extremely challenging to buy tickets for Gary’s mom, our 5 children to all our destinations all over the world ON A REGULAR BASIS.  We had homes in London, Gloustershire, Naples, North Carolina, the north coast of the Dominican Republic and…oh, it makes my head spin just thinking about it!

Needless to say, just by the sheer act of plotting, planning and finally buying, I’ve learned a lot…earned my 10,000 hours over the last 25 + years of international traveling.

However, all the rules have now changed…it’s often hard to know which way to jump…some people book for instance a conference and tell me to confirm quickly so they can buy “that cheap ticket” that is 6 months out!  Whoa, I reply…that’s pretty risky…sometimes you can now buy a ticket at a week out for the same price or better than a month out.

Airlines are constantly shifting and changing and hedging their bets…so let’s look at a few things that we can count on.

#1. The internet makes it a lot easier than we’ve had it before.  There is plenty of data and solid information that we can gather from 100s of sources instantly.

#2.  The internet also makes it a lot harder than we’ve ever had it before BECAUSE THERE ARE SO MANY CHOICES!  We have more information so it is essential that we use this information wisely.

Here are a few ground rules that I am currently using that are working now.

1.    Don’t buy months out.

2.    Sit down with those who are traveling and have a general chat on days/possibilities/flexibilities that might be possible.  Right now, for instance, I am buying for Ecuador.  Gary and I will get a month’s calendar, list our IDEAL flight days and then see which ways we COULD be flexible.

3.    For the past year, it is cheaper (yes, cheaper) in most cases to fly from an outlying airport than direct.  I know a lot of people for instance who drive from let’s say Birmingham, Ala to Atlanta and then fly direct from Atlanta to everywhere.  Don’t do this.  CHECK YOUR POSSIBILITIES.

For example, Gary and I fly mainly from NC to Portland, NC to Quito, NC to London and NC to Copenhagen.  Well, we can fly from Charlotte, Greensboro (Triad) or from a nearby TRI Cities TN tiny airport.  I check out each of these easily and quickly to get a handle on the whole picture.  I don’t just assume that one is cheaper or more expensive, etc.

For instance for years, Charlotte has been very expensive to fly into our area than all the others, and suddenly last fall, it all shifted…now it’s the cheapest.  Well, it could be the aggressiveness of USAir after its near collapse that has caused them to price the lowest since it is their hub and therefore Delta, etc. have followed suit.

When flying from Florida, I look at Tampa (our favorite), Orlando, Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, etc.  Takes only a second and sometimes you can really find an el cheapo winner!

4.    Decide whether you are a frequent flyer who needs to accumulate miles or if you are just an occasional flyer.  We for instance are frequent flyers and use Atlanta as our hub to go to our common destinations…Portland, London, Quito, Copenhagen are our patterns.  Sometimes we fly from NC and sometimes from FL (according to the season)…but ALL of these flights are non-stop from Atlanta via Delta.  So, instead of looking at all airlines/all flights, I really just watch Delta.  We accumulate a lot of miles, use them for free tickets for our children and/or for upgrades.  My advice for frequent flyers is pick an airline and stick with it!  This gets the most bang for your buck…although sometimes I pay more for this, in the long run it works out well and suits us.

If you are lucky enough to be an infrequent flyer, then just look for the best deal!

5.    Frequent flyers can gain a lot from loyalty…although not everything as recently we found out on an emergency trip to Portland!  But usually, we can get what WE determine is important. (not that this might be your choice in the line of fire.)

What is important to us is not just the price but the Duration of the Flight…very, very important you might say!  I’ll pay a bit more to fly a total of 7 hours instead of a lot less to fly the same route with a totally of 11 hours or maybe 23 hours!

Another thing that is important to us is that we can upgrade.  We have logged so many miles and usually have to get off an airplane and go straight to work that over the years we have decided that if we can go first or business class (more or that later) we should.  We feel better if we are not cramped in and let’s face it (although we don’t drink alcohol and don’t eat on planes) there are some good perks.  Very important to us is that there is simply more oxygen up front than there is in the back…so we arrive in better shape than if we were tucked in on the last row.

Other things important to us is that we have a place where we can be quiet and not listen to a dozen cell phone conversations and 7 different TV stations.  We aren’t used to this type of confusion and noise and so we want to have the use of special rooms that airlines provide (Delta’s Crown Rooms) that allow quiet areas.  Often we travel with our service dog, and she too is allowed in these rooms.  We just rest and wait there.  IT DOES MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

ecuador-air tickets

Merri even makes sure that we have seats so we see the sunset at night and sunrise in the morning.

But on the other hand, we don’t want to pay for this privilege which can cost big change.

How do we achieve this?  Well, each airline has its own gimmicks, but Delta allows a cardholder of AMEX Sky Miles Reserve (which can cost anywhere from $295 up) to have free access with his/her companions to all Sky Mile Crown rooms at no cost.  You can now have a simple Gold AMEX Sky Miles card (sometimes without a fee) that allows more or less the same privileges.  We find excellent light food (that is fresh) and peace and quiet there.  We also find their quiet desk of agents that will do just about anything to make life pleasant (changing flights/redoing tickets/finding lost luggage, etc.). They will even wake you if you fall asleep in your comfy chair.  That same card allows us to have a free Concierge booking service (that means they will REALLY try everything to help you) as well as double miles for most of our travel…and (and this is a big one) the right to Pay with Miles.

And what is Pay with Miles?  Well, let’s discuss that under Award Ticketing later in this series.

Merri

Click here for Part Two on Buying Tickets to Ecuador

Join an upcoming Ecuador seminar or North Carolina Super Spanish course.

ecuador-air tickets

There are many reasons to buy a ticket to Ecuador… like the wonderful people.  This is a dancer entertaining delegates at one of our recent Ecuador tours.

Learn About Ecuador & Speak Spanish in Three Days

Learn Spanish in Three Days ONLINE

The “Learn Spanish in Three Day Course” is now available online.

Read below to see why we are offering our Super Spanish course online for the first time.

Speaking Spanish is a huge benefit on its own.  You can become one of the rare North Americans who can get along in Spanish speaking countries.  You can be one of the special people who can communicate with 10 million non-English speakers in the USA.  Spanish is the second most used language in the USA.  There are more Spanish speakers than speakers of Chinese, French, German, Italian, Hawaiian, and the Native American languages combined.  According to the Census Bureau, Spanish is the primary language of nearly 50 million people in the US.  This is the largest Spanish-speaking community outside of Mexico. Only half of these speakers also speak English “very well,” and 19% do not speak Spanish at all.

You can tap into all this potential when you speak Spanish.  Yet there are more benefits.

An article in England’s leading newspaper, the Telegraph, entitled “Why learn a foreign language? Benefits of bilingualism” (1) sum up the biggest benefit of learning a second language and increased intelligence.  The article says: “Learning a foreign language is more than just a boost to your CV or handy for traveling.  It will make you smarter, more decisive and even better at English.  Physiological studies have found that speaking two or more languages is a great asset to the cognitive process.  The brains of bilingual people operate differently than single language speakers, and these differences offer several mental benefits.”

The article then explains studies that show seven cognitive advantages gained from learning a foreign language.

#1:  You become smarter
#2:  You build multitasking skills
#3:  You stave off Alzheimer’s and dementia
#4:  Your memory improves
#5:  You become more perceptive
#6:  Your decision-making skills improve
#7:  You improve your English

Does it sound impossible to learn Spanish in three days?  Yes, it is impossible when you try to learn Spanish in the old, traditional way.

Though you may choose to take more time using this course to learn Spanish, thousands of our readers have learned at our Spanish courses.

There is a scientific method of learning… proven and described in numerous best selling books that create educational jumps by making education natural, easy and fun.   This course works because it is education without stress!

This method was created and refined by the Bulgarian educational master, Georgi Lozanov, who transformed the entire Soviet educational system to such a degree that this third world country beat the USA into space.

Merri was lucky to be one of a handful of students outside of Bulgaria who were allowed to be taught this system in the early 70s.  She practiced this unique and remarkable form of education for  four decades. It was a delight!

Merri and I began integrating these techniques with other shamanic and educational tactics we had gained in our global travels and then applied them to teach Spanish in three days.

The course has been proven again and again by the thousands who have used this system.  You can read a few of the many raves we have received from delegates who have learned from the Super Thinking Spanish course we created.

Here are a few quotes from delegates of the course.

One delegate from St. Louis wrote:  Hi Gary,  Just ended forty-five years in dentistry last week, and I’m on to a new career.  What is my new career?  Still formulating, but the eye -opening,mind expanding Super-Spanish course last weekend in St. Louis surely shows me the opportunity exists to expand my horizons.

Besides having a lot of nice people to learn our new language; the methods Merri and you developed proved to be just what you said they would be.  We all and I in particular relaxed our way to new learning.  I feel so very comfortable with the basis of my new language skills that I know I will be spitting out great Spanish sentences by the time I reach Ecuador in October.  Last year I spent six weeks in Ecuador and now I plan on conversing with the people.

Today’s excerpt of your newsletter really hit home. You do what you say you will. There are no surprises or hidden sales tricks. The only tricks are beneficial to our learning.  Thank you for a wonderful experience that I was quite unable to grasp how you would pull it off.  You did, however, and I look forward to other courses that you offer, and I have absolutely no doubt they also will work beneficially.  Best regards, Denis Molloy.

Another wrote about the Super Spanish course:   Buenos Dias, here is a testimonial for Super Thinking-Super Spanish.  Please feel free to use all or part in promotions for the course.  In addition, you may give my email address to any prospect “on the fence” about enrolling.  Yesterday, in Cotacachi, Ecuador, I finished Super Spanish.  I had high expectations for the course and they were exceeded.

After three days, I can speak Spanish in complete sentences. In simple conversations, such as buying groceries or ordering a meal, I can make myself understood. I think that’s incredible!

Although I am far from the competence level of a native speaker, I feel I’ve taken a giant step forward in learning Spanish so that I can experience the people and culture of Ecuador.  The foregoing benefits would have more than justified the time and money I invested in Super Spanish.  And learning some Spanish was not the most important benefit I got from the course.

Prior to leaving the USA, I had felt for some time that the pace of life there was unhealthy for me (and for most people) and I did nothing about it.

I’ve thought about the pace issue during the course.  One of the key elements Merri Scott designed into Super Spanish is placing the student in the optimal state for learning.  In class, the past three days, I’ve been re-introduced to guided journeys and introduced to the calming effects of Baroque music (www.sundaybaroque.org).  What a blessing! I’m inclined to make one or both a daily part of my life.   Rob Christi.  Cotacachi, Ecuador

Another attendee from a course wrote:   “I took this incredible class a few weeks ago, and I would like to tell anyone that is interested, that it is an amazing three days of learning with lots of laughs included. You leave everyday wanting to learn more and are so excited to do so.

“Other Spanish classes and tutoring made us feel like it would take forever to get to the point where we could put it into practice, but this method gave us a more fluent use for everyday life almost immediately AND the confidence to use it.  It is a fantastic way to show people how much they know and give confidence to learn and use Spanish creating a momentum.

“They made learning Spanish easy and fun in a very relaxed, comfortable atmosphere.  I would definitely recommend this course.  Even if you know some Spanish, this helps make it easier because of the less stress that no verb conjugations gives you.  This gives you more confidence in yourself to try and speak it more.

 “The stress free atmosphere and tons of interaction and participation were very conducive to learning.  The relaxation techniques alone are worth the price.  The fact that I can now feel more comfortable conversing in Spanish with my new friends and neighbors is priceless.  Muchas, muchas gracias.”

“I loved the relaxed environment.  I picked up quite a lot of new vocabulary.  I found this course very informative about how the language works, how I can make sentences and understand others better!  Muchas Gracias!  I had a call from Telcel (the local phone company) after our second class and I was able to speak and understand them for the first time. Despacio (meaning slowly) … a great word!  Everyone should take this course before they pick up bad habits.”

“I liked how simply the course was organized and the positive attitude about learning.  Thank you so much for helping me to learn Spanish!”

“I liked the laid back yet professional approach.  I highly recommend this new, relaxing method of learning Spanish,  I feel a lot more confident in the delivery of my words and sentences. It was taught in an excellent and very professional way.

“It was a very enjoyable class.”

How The Course Works

The first tactic is to use Baroque music in the learning process.  At least three best selling books, “Superlearning”, the “Mozart Effect” and “Superlearning 2000” have revealed insights about how to learn and think more powerfully based on systems drawn from the Bulgarian educational master, Dr. Georgi Lozanov.  Merri Scott was among just a few who learned directly from Lozanov.

The second tactic uses 17 unique lessons to provide Spanish fluency in a short time.   Let me prove to you how this tactic works by teaching you hundreds of Spanish words in less than 30 seconds.

Here is the proof.

“Most words in English that end in ION are almost identical, just pronounced differently.  For example action is accion, education-educacion, manipulation- manipulacion, etc.”

There you have it.  How long did it take you to read the sentence?  You now know hundreds of Spanish words that you will never forget.

See examples of the words you already know below.

How long would have taken you to memorize all those words?  How soon would you have forgotten them?

This is just one of seventeen Spanish lessons in the course.

The next lesson teaches how to pronounce each of the nouns.

Then, the third lesson teaches almost as many verbs, almost as quickly.

The fourth lesson shows how to avoid conjugating verbs by sticking with the infinitive (far easier than it sounds).  This simple lesson leaves a person sounding like a Spanish professor without ever conjugating a verb.

Lesson five shows how to sound infinitely polite and yet get almost anything desired in Spanish.

Lesson six gives valuable connectors and the seventh lesson triples the Spanish capacity with three words for “yesterday,” “now” and “tomorrow”.

By the end of three days you feel comfortable speaking Spanish.

Plus the system is Impro-Dynamic.  This means your Spanish keeps getting better even though you do not seem to be studying… practicing… or speaking Spanish.

I was amazed by this as I traveled back and forth from the USA to Ecuador.  The longer I was away from Ecuador… the better my Spanish became.  My second language was automatically improving The self improving feature comes because you learn to create Spanish sentences rather than remember them.  The portion of the brain that creates is more powerful than the portion that recalls.  When your mind creates something… it owns it!  You do not have to remember .

During the course you learn 4005 Spanish words that you already know .  

You then learn how to create Spanish sentences from these words.

Throughout the course you learn how to pronounce the sentences you create.

When the course ends… the mind keeps working… and creating… so next time you begin to speak Spanish you’ll be surprised .  You improve even though you have not actively worked on your lingual skill.

Due to the difficulty of getting groups together to learn this valuable technique, we created an online program for subscribers to use the Super Spanish course at home.   This is available at the highly reduced price of $79.

I’ll be in touch personally via email with each person who signs up for this course to see how it works or what is required to make it better.  Once this test is complete, we plan to offer the program on a larger scale and at a much higher price.

The ONLINE course has our, full satisfaction or money back, guarantee.  Try Super Spanish for 60 days.  If not fully satisfied, simply let us know for a full refund.

Learn Spanish online $79

Here are more testimonials from previous Super Spanish Courses.

Maggie wrote: It didn’t really seem possible that we would be speaking and understanding Spanish in only 3 days but the course made it happen in a very supportive learning environment.  I would highly recommend this course for anyone wishing to learn “practical Spanish”.  The teaching methods, use of relaxation, the use of native Spanish speakers for pronunciation and the teachers themselves who were approachable and helpful and always positive made this a very valuable class.

This course improved my self confidence in my ability to learn and retain a language.  It was presented with genuine enthusiasm, great energy and the style of learning is very effective. Gracias!  It was a great experience.

Nadine wrote: “Just spent the last 3 days in the most wonderful learning environment learning Spanish.  What an amazing learning experience!!  First day out of class and I could not stop thinking in Spanish WOW!!  I am amazed by how much I learned, retained and how much more is showing up now that I am out of class.  And the best part is THERE WAS NO STUDYING!! Indeed this is Super Thinking!!!  I would highly recommend this to anyone that has ever had a desire to learn another language or learn anything in record time.

And a few days after that ….  As I went through my day, just hanging out with my son, I could see myself starting to think in Spanish.  At first I thought it was amusing but as it continued and increased I thought “My goodness this is really remarkable amazing” It was really an effortless unfolding.  I wasn’t at any point “trying” to think in Spanish, just words I knew would fly across the screen in my mind.  And then this afternoon, my son cuddled up on the couch to watch some cartoons on his ipad and was watching Peppa Pig in Spanish…hmm coincidence?  I think not, I’m radiating Spanish so much that my son is being influenced!  Thanks a million again.  This weekend the best learning experience of my life!!

If you have ever had a desire to learn Spanish this is the way to do it!  By the end of the first day I had more confidence and more practical ability than I had from any previous courses I had taken.  It was fun and relaxed and full of laughter.  You will leave this class excited to use what you have learned.  Rather than leaving overwhelmed with how much you have yet to learn and master, you are equipped with the knowledge and know how to go out and communicate as well as the excitement to do it!”

Gary noted:  “The whole approach is positive and conducive to learning at a level that benefits ALL participants.  It is not intimidating and does not set up a pass/fail atmosphere.  The presenters are terrific and the results unbelievable.  It was relaxed, informal, friendly and effective.”

Twila said:  “This class provided a very refreshing and relaxed way of learning.  The atmosphere felt very safe to say the words you were practicing.  I learned a lot in a way that will make it easy to apply.  Starting with conversation is way more fun.  How quickly you can learn!  It was a great group, great instructors and great stories.

The atmosphere in the classroom was so relaxed that learning Spanish felt like a breeze and not like a painful task.  The relaxation exercises are really conducive to language learning.  We learned A LOT in a short time and it was fun and the environment was non-threatening.”

Brigitte sent this:  “Buenos Dias, Suzanne. su clase de espanol es excelente! Muchas Gracias!  
I have already done what you suggested and went into the program listening to the music and going over the lessons.  I know: Repetition……reinforcement…..thinking in the new language….it’s all part of it.  I loved your course and will certainly recommend it to friends.  Who knows….I might feel the urge and have the opportunity to repeat it at your beautiful place in Puerto Aventuras…..Quien sabe? Hasta otro dia y saludos a su familia.”

Marie wrote:  “I would highly recommend this course.  The amount covered in 3 days is amazing!  All with no stress.  The correlation lessons and pronunciation practice has greatly reduced my anxiety to go out and use my Spanish.  I really enjoyed the whole process and thank you for the take away tools.”

Learn Spanish online $79

Gary

Here is the English translation of a few of the many Spanish words you now know and will never forget.  How long would it have taken you to memorize them?  How soon would you forget?

“Most words in English that end in ION are almost identical, just pronounced differently.  For example, action is accion, education-educacion, manipulation- manipulacion, etc.”

Some more of these words:  Combination, Attrition, Education, Vacation, Petition, Lotion, Motion, Construction, Abduction, Pronunciation, Concentration and a ton of others!

Learn Spanish online $79

(1) www.telegraph.co.uk Benefits-of-bilingualism.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ecuador Travel Tip


Ecuador Travel Tip

Ecuador-travel-tips

This time of year is glorious in the Blue Ridge. Here is a shot of our front yard.  Yet soon we head south traveling again to Ecuador.

There is plenty of beauty in Ecuador too.

Ecuador-travel-tips

I took this shot from near our hotel Meson de las Flores. The difference is this green was in the middle of winter. Cotacachi’s weather is eternal spring!

Ecuador travel is easy from the USA… less then four hours from Miami to Ecuador about five from Atlanta to Ecuador.

However travel is travel and security procedures combined with airline cutbacks have added stress on travel to Ecuador or anywhere.

So I thought the note below about Ecuador travel was worth sharing with all.

Gary,  I know you and Merri must be very healthy to do as much time on airlines as you both do, and many other attendant exposures!  In all the years I have enjoyed your news letters, I have never heard of either of you being “down with the flu or cold”!   Do you eat airlines food?  or do you have any other tips for healthy eating on airlines?  Any other health tips for airlines will be appreciated and put to good use!

The reader is correct… Neither Merri or I are hardly ever ill.  Neither of us has been to an MD (for sickness) in over 20 years. I cannot recall missing a day of work because we were ill.

There are many things we do to maintain our energy and health.  We try to spend  our time and money on health preservation instead of medical insurance.  There are links to numerous health tips below.

Here let’s just look at some tips for health on planes.

In May 1968,  I boarded my first commercial flight Portland, Vancouver, Tokyo, Hong Kong on Canadian Pacific Airlines.

Merri (I did not know her then) at about the same time was headed Atlanta – New York – Frankfurt on Lufthansa.

Over the next 41 years, we’ve traveled to more than 70 countries researching business opportunities, exploring and enjoying new destinations.

We have lived and worked on every continent.

Many of you like ourselves are on the run, traveling thousands of miles and crossing dozens of time zones the year through. We have to perform well on these trips even as we put enormous stress on our bodies.

Here are a few tricks we have learned over the millions of miles we have flown. I hope they help you in your travel to Ecuador… or wherever.

First, avoid peanuts and other hard to digest foods on airplanes. In fact it’s better to avoid salted peanuts completely. Our friend, the Taita Yatchak, who lived with us at our hacienda in Ecuador  was amazed to see us eat roasted peanuts. “High in Uric Acid”, he said.

Our Indian (from India) friends who are experts in Ayurveda (the 5000 year old Science of Life) have also warned us away from peanuts as being very hard to digest. They are known as tomasic (meaning those things that destroy rather than build).

Then imagine getting on a plane and crossing the ocean and a half dozen time zones which will throw off our digestion in itself.

This is a dry dehydrating environment hard on the kidneys. These factors alone are hard enough. To throw in a hard to digest food high in uric acid is like the kiss of death.

Second, avoid alcohol on airplanes. Dehydrating as well, hard on kidneys,and liver. Mixed with roasted peanuts! Ahhhhhh!

Third, sleep when traveling towards the sun. Travel through time zones throw off our Circadian rhythm.

We find that it helps to stay awake when traveling away from the sun. We fly to Europe or South America numerous times every year when I speak at seminars there and to visit our children.

Often I have to get up the day after I arrive and conduct seminars… sometimes for  eight hours. This requires a clear mind and energetic body.  So we need to be sure that the flight has not drained us.

We have flown across the Atlantic with clients and observed as they tucked into cocktails (peanuts!) heavy dinner, desserts and after dinner liquors while we are settling down to sleep through the flight.

We awaken, have only a little breakfast on the plane, and meet the European morning refreshed and ready to have a full day (but we go to bed early the first night).   Those clients are dragging and beat.  “Where on earth do you get your energy?” they ask.

Can’t sleep on planes?

Buy some Valerian tea at the health food store, ask for hot water and make your own tea. It tastes like what I imagine dirty gym socks would taste, but is a natural way to get to sleep.

We also use melatonin to restore the natural melatonin that is lost on endless time zones. Just buy a bottle of liquid from the health food store and take 20 minutes before sleep.

I also bring along my Bose noise suppressing headphones and some baroque music.

Before I leave on a journey, I massage my feet with an essential oil blend.

When essential oils are applied to our feet, they stimulate zones on our feet that “mirror” the entire body. Stimulating these reflexes sends messages to the associated body parts that help reduce tension, improve circulation and help the body deliver oxygen and nutrients to the cells… important benefits on a flight.

I use my Essential Oil Blend Chart, created by Candace Newman and massage the oil blend in my hair, put it in my ears up my nose, on my face and on my collar and shirt cuffs.

The oil fights virus and bacteria plus helps balance the flighty feeling on a flight.

Here is Candace’s Essential Oil Blend Chart.

essential-oil-chart

We also avoid airplane water (except bottled).   We add a drop of Rose Otto essential oil.  This makes a tasty rose water that aids digestion and the time transition.

We make sure the oil we use is Rose Otto which is the steam distilled essential oil of rose petals. Otto is the term used to differentiate the steam distilled variety from the ‘Rose Absolute’ and “Rose Concrete”.  The extraction process for both Absolute and Concrete use solvents so Rose Otto from the Bulgarian ‘damask’ Rose, cultivated since the 16th century, is considered to produce the finest quality essence

Rose Otto is bright, alive, richly floral and complex and is more potent than the Absolute and Concrete so smaller amounts of Rose Otto are required.

You can order Rose Otto 4 ml here

We also spray ourselves (head and face and air above us) with lavender essential oil lavender misted with distilled water to combat dehydration and to refresh, cleanse and purify.

In Aromatherapy, mists and hydrosols are generally used to calm our emotions, lift our spirit, cleanse the air, and soothe the skin.

You can make your own mist with Lavender oil.

You can order Lavender  essential oil here 10 ml

Candace Newman has a four mist sampler pack that contains all four of mists.

Candace offers a sample of four 1 oz essential oil mist blends each in amber plastic bottle with zipper carrying case and includes an Essential Oil Mist Chart is included free.

1 ounce Lavender Mist
1 ounce Lavender-Peppermint Mist
1 ounce Lavender-Rose Mist
1 ounce Rejuvenation Mist

Essential-oil-mist

Learn more or order here.

Next we travel first or business class using our frequent flyer miles to upgrade ourselves. There is more privacy and room in this class and because we book as early as possible, we almost always are upgraded.

We do yoga (or stretching) before we get on and off… plus stretch during the flight. This helps keep spinal fluids moving. The spine is often perceived as just a stack of bones in reality it is our gateway of energy and it shifts with every thought we have about life. It is a precise mirror of who we are. With every stress we have, the interrelationships of bones, muscles, ligaments, and nerves are altered in and through the spine. These deviations are minute, often imperceptible, but no matter how small, the changes in the spine have gigantic effects on the body.

I then use a spinal tuner before and after each flight.  You can learn about Joe Culbertson’s spinal tuner at www.spine-tuner.com

On long flights we also  wear an ionizer around our necks. This purifies the air and  creates negative ions that makes us feel fresher and cleaner.

This is a shot of my well used travel ionizer.

Ecuador-travel-tips

Mine is old and about the size of a pack of cigarettes.  New ones are in the market for $119. They offer a Corona Discharge Air Purification technology to create fresh air while purifying the air with a stream of charged electrons (Ions) .  This Ionizer is worn around the neck so a continuous stream of ions flows toward the face.  A round magnet rests on the back of the neck to reinforce your body’s magnetic field (which is off balance in high altitudes).  Google the word Chionizer and you’ll see a number of sites offering this product.

We also try to arrive and leave via a small airport. When we are in North Carolina we fly Delta’s commuter partner in Tri-Cities Tennessee to Atlanta or Cincinnati.  Big airports like Miami or Atlanta create a lot of stress… crowds, noise, rudeness and pollution.  This is not a good way to start or end a flight.  By starting at a small airport, there’s not much stress, people remember us and it goes smooth and easy.

Finally we meditate when we get on the plane, often during the flight and before we disembark.

We do our best to eat little or nothing and avoid hard to digest foods on these long hauls…just some pure water, fresh fruit…. sometimes a boiled egg… a few seeds and nuts are very satisfying.  Rest and avoid stress as much as you can on the journey.

Every generation has had its health cross to bear. Neanderthal Man faced the Saber Tooth Tiger.  Medieval  Europe had plagues.  Today we face fast food, stress and long flights!

It is a miracle, privilege and responsibility that we have the freedom to travel almost anywhere on this good earth we choose. This gives us the ability to broaden our horizons and contribute more to the world. These few simple tips  can reduce the negative elements of the great joy of air travel.

Gary

Join us at an upcoming Ecuador or North Carolina conference or tour.

On our upcoming Imbabura real estate tours we’ll look at real estate on all three of the big lakes near Cotacachi. Here is a map of the area.

Ecuador-travel-tips

June 12-14 Shamanic Mingo Tour

June 16-17 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

June 18-21 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

We’ll  visit the sacred Quicocha lake for a shamanic study and perhaps a ceremony.

July 4-8  Ecuador Export Tour

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Ecuador-Lake-Property

View from San Pablo Lake property for sale.

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course

Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Lake Yahuarcocha

The lake is a historical site also known as Blood Lake because of a 13 year battle between the locals and Incas.

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

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.

More Health Tip Links

Natural Health One Step at a Time

Vision and Food

Here’s Incredible Power

Natural Awakenings to Secrets of Longevity

Foundations of Health

Investing Inspired by Raspberries at Dawn

Ecuador Shamans & Purification

Ecuador Risk


Ecuador has risks.

As does everywhere.  In fact our world has more risk then ever before.

ecuador-risk

Are quiet Ecuador streets like this Cotacachi avenue at risk?

ecuador-risk

The young Ecuadorian children who go to school early, alone don’t seem to feel much risk.  Yet?

Change creates risk and we live in an era of increasingly rapid change.

Those who welcome this fact are those who have the best chance of success. ahead.

This is the era of rapid change… the era of  extra risk.  The current time period within this era is of accelerated change and risk.

This is an important message about how to manage risk in Ecuador or anywhere.

ecuador-risk

Even young children play alone in the Cotacachi Ecuador streets without much risk

Yet we must always take care.

Take for example the US travel advisory for Ecuador… read  without perspective. Ecuador risk would seem high.

Here are excerpts from the US travel advisory for Ecuador:

SAFETY AND SECURITY: The U.S. Embassy in Quito advises caution when traveling to the northern border region of Ecuador, to include areas in the provinces of Sucumbios, Orellana and Carchi, northern Esmeraldas, and southern Esmeraldas, south of Atacames.  U.S. government personnel are under limitations with respect to traveling alone and over-nighting in these areas due to the spread of organized crime, drug trafficking, small arms trafficking, and incursions by various Colombian terrorist organizations.

CRIME:  Crime is a serious problem in Ecuador, and visitors should be alert and cautious.  Non-violent crime is common: hundreds of Americans are robbed every year in Ecuador.   Incidents of rape have increased, even in well-traveled tourists areas and when the victims traveled in groups for safety. Shootings, kidnappings, and carjackings are still relatively rare, but American citizens have been victimized by those crimes.  The Ecuadorian government has increased police patrols in tourist areas, but travelers should remain alert to their surroundings and maintain constant control of personal belongings.

Criminals sometimes use incapacitating drugs such as scopolamine on unsuspecting tourists in order to rob them.  These so-called date rape drugs are put into drinks in order to drug the unsuspecting victim.  This drug can render the victim disoriented and can cause prolonged unconsciousness and serious medical problems.  Never allow a stranger to “buy” you a drink and never leave your drink unattended.  Several American citizens have reported thefts of property following ingestion of such substances.

Does Ecuador sound risky?

Ecuador sounds risky until you read the travel advisory for Italy.  Here are excerpts from the US travel advisory for Italy:

Some travelers are victims of rape and beatings.  There are incidents of drinks laced with drugs being used by criminals to rob, and in some cases, assault tourists.  Many of these incidents occur in the vicinity of Rome’s Termini train station and at major tourist centers such as Campo de Fiori and Piazza Navona, as well as in Florence and Naples.  Criminals using this tactic “befriend” a traveler at a train station, bus stop, restaurant, café or bar in tourist areas, then eventually offer a drink laced with a sleeping drug.  When the tourist falls asleep, criminals steal the traveler’s valuables.  There are also instances where the victim is assaulted, either physically or sexually.

Petty crimes such as pick-pocketing, theft from parked cars, and purse snatching are serious problems, especially in large cities.  Clients of Internet cafes in major cities are also targeted.  Tourists who have tried to resist petty thieves on motor scooters have suffered broken arms and collarbones.

The U.S. Secret Service in Rome is assisting Italian Law Enforcement authorities in investigating an increase in the appearance of ATM skimming devices.

Organized criminal groups operate throughout Italy, but are more prevalent in the south.  They occasionally resort to violence to intimidate or to settle disputes.

Italy could seem risky as well until you read the travel advisory for Spain .  Here are excerpts from the US travel advisory for Spain.

SAFETY AND SECURITY:     Spain and Andorra share with the rest of the world an increased threat of international terrorist incidents.  Like other countries in the Schengen area, Spain’s open borders with its Western European neighbors allow the possibility of terrorist groups entering and exiting the country with anonymity.  Spain’s proximity to North Africa makes it vulnerable to attack from Al Qaeda terrorists in the Maghreb region.  Americans are reminded to remain vigilant with regard to their personal security and to exercise caution.

In the deadliest terrorist attack in recent European history, in March 2004, Islamist extremists bombed four commuter trains entering Madrid, causing 191 deaths and over 1,400 injuries.  Spanish authorities tried the suspected terrorists and their co-conspirators in February 2007 and convicted in October 2007.

The Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA) terrorist organization remains active in Spain.  ETA has historically avoided targeting foreigners, directing their attacks against the police, military, local politicians, and Spanish government targets as well as attempts to disrupt transportation and daily life. However, foreigners have been killed or injured collaterally in ETA attacks.  Two examples of this are the Barajas Airport bombing in December 2006, in which two Ecuadorian nationals were killed and the bombing at the University of Navarre in October 2008, in which 17 students were injured including one American student.  In addition, bombs have been used as part of criminal extortion of businesses, particularly in the Basque region. The risk of “being in the wrong place at the wrong time” in event of an ETA action is a concern for foreign visitors and tourists.  U.S. tourists traveling to Spain should remain vigilant, exercise caution, monitor local developments, and avoid demonstrations and other potentially violent situations.

Street crimes against tourists occur in the principal tourist areas.  Madrid and Barcelona, in particular, report incidents of pick-pocketing, mugging and occasional violent attacks, some of which require the victim to seek medical attention.  Although crimes occur at all times of day and night and to people of all ages, older tourists and Asian Americans seem to be particularly at risk.  Criminals frequent tourist areas and major attractions such as museums, monuments, restaurants, outdoor cafes, Internet cafes, hotel lobbies, beach resorts, city buses, subways, trains, train stations, airports, and ATMs.

Thieves often work in teams of two or more people.  In many cases, one person distracts a victim while the accomplices perform the robbery.   Spanish authorities warn of the availability of so-called “date-rape” drugs and other drugs, including “GBH” and liquid ecstasy.  Americans should not lower their personal security awareness because they are on vacation.

We could go on… in Europe…  in Asia… or anywhere.

ecuador-risk

Parents in Cotacachi Ecuador do not feel much risk when they let their children play in the parks.

Mostly, places are not the cause of risk.  The causes of risk  are within,  our awareness, our actions, our  patterns and habits.

If one becomes aware of change and adapts accordingly… there is no risk.  There is opportunity instead.

Early adapters are called risk takers.   They are not.

Real risk takers are those who do not  adapt because…  we know…  there is change.

The real risk is living by OLD rules in a NEW world.

The real risk is believing in General Motors for example… because it is the biggest… oldest… so it must be safest.

ecuador-risk

Young lovers in Ecuador can meet safely in out of the way places.

The world is new every day and each day, some old rule no longer works.

The old rules used to say that the Western world was safe… and the emerging world riskier.   The old rules said that the Western world had low crime…  the emerging world had high crime.

Yet look at excerpts of a recent New York Times article entitled “Prison Spending Outpaces All but Medicaid” by Solomon Moore (See a link to the entire article below) says:

One in every 31 adults, or 7.3 million Americans, is in prison, on parole or probation, at a cost to the states of $47 billion in 2008, according to a new study.

Criminal correction spending is outpacing budget growth in education, transportation and public assistance, based on state and federal data. Only Medicaid spending grew faster than state corrections spending, which quadrupled in the past two decades, according to the report Monday by the Pew Center on the States, the first breakdown of spending in confinement and supervision in the past seven years.

This suggests that the US has quite a lot of risk… both in crime and health.

ecuador-risk

Ecuador people are by nature, caring, friendly and warm.

Sometimes I get letters like the one below from readers who have been victims of crime in Ecuador.  This reader lost her computer and camera when she forgot them in the business lounge at the Radisson hotel in Quito.

Dear Gary,  Can you believe, the Quito police, working with the Radisson hotel, found my  briefcase with the computer and other small items and had them sent by Federal Express to me.  I had provided them with the receipts of all the items stolen, for the items they were not able to send me  (camera and cellular phone) I was reimbursed via bank transfer. I still can’t believe it.  This was a good ending and so unexpected.  send you all love, and good thoughts. Laura

New rules about risk are being written every day and our daughter Francesca shared some thoughts on this when she recently visited us here.

Fran is quite a traveler.  Here early studies were in England… Gloucestershire and Birmingham.  Then she spent more for more than a year in Spain and Costa Rica, and moved to Naples and Delray, Florida which were bases for her to  manage real estate tours in Argentina, Belize, Chile, Ecuador and Uruguay.

She worked for several years doing human rights training in Geneva, Switzerland before returning to get her Masters degree at London School of Economics.

Then  she worked in London for the Crown Agents where she was assigned
as a project manager and consultant to governments in Nigeria,  Peru, Sierra Leone and South Africa.

She has worked the last several years  as a development planning, monitoring & evaluation consultant in Swaziland and is returning there now on a contract with the United Nations.

As a young, single woman (now married) she has had to be aware of risks traveling everywhere from Florida to London to Lagos.

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Here I am with Francesca on her wedding day.

Fran & Sam rode to their reception in Richmond Park on a bicycle built for tow.

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Riding a bike through London traffic… now that is risky!

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Here are some common sense thoughts that Francesca shares about living with risk.

Living with Risk by Francesca Scott

We’re living in risky times; from the economic collapse, to swine flu, to erratic weather conditions.  It sometimes surprises me when people ask me if I’m not worried about living in Swaziland (my current home), because, they say, Africa is such a dangerous place.  I figure that when I return to London, my risk of being attacked in a terrorist attack skyrockets.  And I am still dumbfounded by the fact that children are screened for guns at schools in the United States.  By the way in England for the first time screening for knives has begun in some inner-city London schools.

The issue of risk came to mind recently, when I was visiting my Grandma. One evening over dinner, the discussion turned to the security situation in Swaziland, and I mused that in certain ways I feel safer in Swaziland than I do in parts of London. My Grandma commented that gangs were increasingly becoming a problem in Portland, her home city, and that she didn’t feel that safe these days.  The next day, as we stopped at the local bank, I was surprised by the thick wall of bullet proof glass completely separating the staff from the general public. They don’t have that in banks in London, or in Mbabane, Swaziland’s capital city.

I began thinking about how easily we adapt to different risks within our local environments. In many countries, one would be crazy not to have bars on lower windows. In central London, I hold my bag very close to my chest – I value my purse and cell phone too much. My mother-in-law, who lives in Australia, actually leaves her keys in her car when she stops at a store to pick up groceries (gasp!).  Sadly, I doubt that will last for much longer.   So does my Dad in NC.  They have a policy on the farm that all keys remain in all vehicles…just in case someone needs to jump in one!

Each country has a different risk profile, from pick-pockets, to pollution, to drug barons.  I am not saying that Swaziland does not have its dangers – my house has been broken into several times, and I drive much more defensively than I would in the US or the UK (mostly to avoid wayward cows that have drifted onto the road).  The important thing is to be fully informed about the risks.  This might sound obvious, but sometimes people are scared off by unfamiliar risks or misinformation.

It’s also worth remembering that there are often a variety of ways to mitigate those risks through effective prevention methods, so long as you know the rules. Most of us are guilty of exposing ourselves to unnecessary risk as a result of ignorance at one time or other, and are lucky that we’ve lived to tell the tell. I was threatened at knife point by a drug addict in a park in Spain, when I lived there as a student.  When I recounted my story to my Spanish roommate, she told me that I was a fool to be in that park in the first place, ‘…didn’t you know that it’s the favorite haunt for heroine addicts in the city?’  Well, no, obviously I didn’t know at that time, but it was a valuable lesson for me about the importance of knowing the rules.

I must admit to being a little scared before I went to Swaziland.  After all, it’s in one of the poorest parts of the world, and only three hours drive from Johannesburg, a gang-ridden, violent city. I also couldn’t shake off all those awful images of Africa I’ve seen on the evening news. I told myself that I would try it out for six months (I figured I could survive for that length of time in an underground bunker living off tinned corned beef and bottled water if it was that bad), and make a decision from there about whether or not it was for me. Two-and-a-half years later, I still thoroughly enjoy living here and am very glad that I resisted my initial anxieties.

For those considering buying property, or even moving to Ecuador, or any other country – developed, developing or downright poverty stricken for that matter – I would recommend to take the time to become fully informed about the types of risks you might face.  You can find out a lot from the internet and books, but it would be a shame to be scared off by some of what you read or by the well intentioned comments of a neighbor who hasn’t ever lived away from their home town.

Everyone comes from a different starting point, and everyone has a different risk threshold.

Also, the dramatic stories tend to be more interesting to tell.  While reading around can certainly offer you a variety of different and valuable viewpoints, it’s also important to talk to people who have lived in the country. Locals can be an invaluable source of information, while ex-pats may be more appreciative of the kinds of risks unanticipated by a foreigner, risks that may seem glaringly obvious to a local. Also, find out what you can do to mitigate those risks. Often you can reduce your exposure significantly using the appropriate precautions. If you think that the benefits outweigh those risks, then go down and check out the country for yourself.  That’s the only way you can really know if the level of risk is one that you could tolerate.

It might be that the risks are in some countries and in some places, in fact, just too high, pushing you beyond your comfort zone, or that the restrictions necessary to reduce your risks would make you feel stressed and claustrophobic. It’s no fun lying restless at night at night because you’re worried over a break-in, even though you have an alarm, or resent the lack of privacy from having a guard permanently outside your house. If you’re looking for the exact replica of your own community, with the same level of risk, and a Starbucks around the corner thank you very much, then somewhere like an emerging country really may not be for you. There will inevitably be new and different risks in poorer countries, some to which you, as a foreigner, could be at much higher risk than a local.

But take a moment to reflect on the risks that you face in your daily environment back home, and you might find that such risks are relative. While some risks will be new when you move abroad, you will also leave some behind. Therefore, before making any decision of moving to a country other than your own, I recommend making sure that you are informed by the reality on the ground, not some misconception fed by the media or well-intentioned homebodies. Only with that information can you gauge whether you’ll be comfortable with the type and level of risk you might face. For an adventurous soul, you may well find that the benefits of living in a new culture, the fun of exploring a foreign terrain, make everything worthwhile.

Risk assessment is a vital part of survival and success in today’s world.

This has always been true so always consider risk… but when you evaluate danger… don’t  just look at the places where you will be.   Review your thinking, your habits and patterns to see how you can turn risk into opportunity.

Gary

Join us here at our hotel Meson de las Flores.  Learn more turning risk into opportunity at our courses and tours.

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June 12-14 Shamanic Mingo Tour

June 16-17 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

June 18-21 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 4-8  Ecuador Export Tour

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course

Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

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 the entire article Prison Spending Outpaces All but Medicaid at http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/03/us/03prison.html

Global Investing and Ecuador


My global investing and business began 41 years ago May 2, 1968 and eventually led me to Ecuador.

My background as son of a zoo keeper did not leave me prepared.

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Here is a newspaper clipping of my sister Sandra and me feeding a baby lion we kept at home… one of many lions and tigers we raised.

Let me share 41 years of multi currency investing and a couple of important facts I learned that may help you… including what’s happening with the swine flu in Ecuador.

I arrived in Hong Kong in the night, the tropical air so soft it was a velvet mist.   Thick evening scents in the fragrant harbor and mellow insects purrings in rhythm with the cacophony of the great city!  What a an exotic adventure.

Kai Tak was Hong Kong’s airport then and being American born and bred, I knew nothing about investing aboard.

That was my first airplane trip, first time out of Oregon. Portland to Vancouver, Tokyo to Hong Kong.  I melted in my heavy woolen blazer, was weary and afraid but excited too. An incredible global investing journey had begun… and continues to this day.

Here I was, 21 years old.

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Here is the first stamp in that first passport. That stamp you might say was my first international investment.

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That first stamp makes a point by the way about how to enter and initially work or invest in a country.  That first stamp was issued May 2, 1968 and allowed me to stay in Hong Kong until June 2, 1968.

I worked in Hong Kong for quite some time on tourist stamps… coming in for a month at a time.   I was developing sales teams in Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Indonesia, Indonesia, Singapore and the Philippines at the same time so a month was plenty of time before I exited.

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Here is one of my first sales teams… this one in Hong Kong led by John So Kwok Kee (far left – you can guess which one I am).

I built teams from the north in Japan down through Thailand.  One of the salesmen we worked with in Thailand, Brian Tracy, returned later to Canada and has had great success in the sales education field.

Starting a business, investigation or residence with a tourist visa is a pretty good idea. This is usually the easiest, most efficient, practical way to begin so you can be sure what you are doing and how you’ll develop a more permanent stay if you want one.  In many cases… such as mine… a permanent tourist system is simply the easiest and best.

I began my business in Hong Kong this way and for years I also lived and worked in England on tourist stamps before obtaining my permanent residence there.

A reader recently sent me this note about Ecuador tourist visas.

“Gary, When I was staying at the Hotel, someone mentioned that you do not
have a residential visa for Ecuador.  Is this correct?  How do you
spend as much time in the country as you do?”

Here is my rely:

“I spend less than 6 months a year in Ecuador.

“We have heard from others who come stay for 90 days, leave for just a day or two (especially just over the border in Peru or Colombia)  and come right back that there are difficulties.

“Our experience is that every time we come to Ecuador we are given a 90
day visa.  However we do not stress this system. For example we may stay 70 days and then be away for weeks or even a month or so.  Then return for 20 days or so.. then leave for another month etc.   The immigration officers look carefully at the total number of days by the end of the year and to help them, I keep a list of each day we have arrived and departed and the page number in our passport… so they can efficiently see we have not been in more than 180 days the maximum allowed on a T-3 tourist visa).

Be careful not to overstay. One reader reported that having done so he was denied entrance upon his return and were not allowed to return to Ecuador for one year.

We have a full report on Ecuador visas and an immigration attorney who helps our Ecuador Living subscribers.

I am also preparing a report for Ecuador Living subscribers to answer this question from a reader yesterday.

“Hi Gary, Wonderful timing, we had tickets to fly from Guadalajara to Quito yesterday, but were stymied by the fact that Ecuador (and Peru) are refusing passengers from Mexico.  We understand Ecuador’s borders  will be closed for a month to non-residents flying in from Mexico.

We had thought about flying back to the States and then flying to Ecuador, but an electronic scan of our passports would show we’d been in Mexico and we’re not sure what would happen.  Any insights?   Thanks!

You can obtain these reports and answers as an Ecuador Living subscriber. Learn how to subscribe to Ecuador Living here.

Back to Hong Kong.  I began there selling US mutual funds.

When arriving there 41 years ago there is no way I could have known how exciting the next decades would be, how much information, facts, figures, ideas and insights on how to invest globally would be gained. Had I known the mistakes to be made I would probably have run!

Then I moved east again to England and Europe… trying many things.

Thankfully all the trials, tortures and errors were mitigated by much fun and an earnest endeavor to live right and learn.

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Here is a newspaper clipping of me  with a business partner in my London office on Artillery Row selling square inches of Graceland… not really a very good idea.

Later I imported Rolls Royces and Bentleys from England to the US… a better idea.

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One goal at this site is to share basics of global investing and living an international life learned over these 41 years. Global investing has changed so much during this time and is changing even faster now.  I am continually forced to rearrange my thinking strategy and tactics at a faster pace.

We offered health courses at our North Carolina farm. Here I am with our son, Jake, with one tactic we taught… a morning dip in a cold creek after exercise… yes that is snow on the banks and no… this not surprisingly did not sell very well either.

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Our food as medicine courses taught by Merri in her teaching kitchen at the farm had better attendance!

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For almost 15 years now we have been conducting courses in Ecuador. Here I am this year in the meeting room at the Cotacachi museum next to Meson de las Flores on an Ecuador export tour.

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This continual evolution has helped Merri and me, our readers and our income continually grow… through good times and bad.

Yesterday April 2009 for example ended with anoter record month for our internet sales.  Our 2009 sales (April month on month) were up 48.01% over April 2008, which in turn were up 24.04% over April 2007 sales.

Our sales in the first four months of 2009 were up 81.75% over Jan through April 2008 which was up 26.20% over 2007.  Learn how to develop an internet business that can grow like this here.

The reason we have survived and progressed amidst this never ending update is that the little stuff shifts and evolves, but the fundamentals remain immutable.

Investing globally is not a panacea, but expanded horizons are. Life is a trip and we have an entire globe to enjoy the ride.

Two years ago on May 2, 2007, I wrote:

History suggests that this is a time when chances are increased for panic and sudden drops in investment markets. Investors who have proven themselves nervous short term thinkers are highly leveraged, in thin, over purchased markets that are easily sinkable boats treading the dangerous waters of May though October when tradition says the currents will most likely be treacherous and surrounded with lots of storms.

Now, that this risk has proven true, history also suggests that we have a once in a life time opportunity.

The way to cash in on this incredible opportunity is the same way I suggested avoiding the collapse two years ago. I wrote then: “One way to get good international investments is to take a long term, expansive international view.”

My first trip abroad 41 years ago was significant because 1968 was the beginning of a new era for world stock markets. When I arrived in Hong Kong the world of investing was dominated by Wall Street. That was about to end. 1968 was the year when the Hong Kong Stock Market began to explode upwards along with Tokyo’s market. What a ride!

The Heng Seng Index was then 100 and rose to 18,000. Anyone who steadily committed money to this market then made a fortune.

I can sum up my investment basic investing and advice in seven sentences.

#1: 1970s. Invest in real estate, gold, silver Japan, Germany, Switzerland and Hong Kong.

#2: 1980s. Invest in real estate, the Tigers, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore Malaysia and South Korea as well.

#3: 1990s. Invest in real estate South America (which led me to Ecuador).

#4: 2000s. Invest real estate, China, India and emerging markets including Ecuador real estate.

#5: Always have an expansive view.

#6: Use stop losses during peaks.

#7: Have an international investment view. Never overextend. Don’t trade too much, just hang on.

This philosophy has reaped millions for Merri and me. Had we been more expansive, we would have an extra $20 million or so.  However our conservative approach to business and investing also protected us during the recent melt down of 2007 and 2008.

This may be time to begin taking advantage of the recovery. Panic is subsiding but values are still high. The huge excesses of the US and other government’s will at some stage begin to seriously erode the purchasing power of currencies.

I remain highly diversified from a currency point of view.  Here is my current currency breakdown in my liquid portfolio that represents 43% of my total portfolio.

An excerpt from a recent Multicurrencyinvesting.com lesson explains why when I wrote about the currency distribution of investments:

Here is my currency distribution:

Danish kroner    24%
Euro                     24%
British Pound      8%
US Dollar            12%
Canadian Dollar 3%
Norway kroner   4%
NZ Dollar             3%
Sweden kroner    7%
Brazil real             3%
Hungary Forint   6%
Turkey Try            6%

With more than a third of my liquid position in Danish, Swedish and Norwegian kroner, my Scandinavian  position is seriously over weighted in terms of global market size.

One reason is because these are such small countries located on the sea.  This means that their histories are composed of  travel and trade.

A nation’s heritage reflects in the value of its currency strength. This fact helped me answer this question from a reader.

“Gary, Will  future strength in DKK be bad for equities denominated in that currency?”

Here is my reply.

Most of the Danish companies you would buy are global companies.

Because Denmark is such a small market any large Danish company is doing most of its business out of Denmark  so a lot of their success depends on the type of business business and where the company actually manufactures and sells its products.

Plus look at the margins built into the product.

One benefit in Scandinavia is their very highly educated population. A recent Time magazine article shows that Finland (not Scandinavian but Baltic and Finland’s currency is the euro – otherwise I would have Finmark in my portfolio as well) ranked number one for educational performance of 15 year olds in math. Denmark was number 10, Sweden number 15 and Norway number 23… all ahead of the US (number 25).

Finland was number one for reading performance of 15 years olds as well.  Sweden number seven, Norway number 10 and Denmark number 16. The US was number 15.

This means that the products produced in these nations will tend to be high value.

For example, Novo Norsk makes insulin.  I suspect that the margins are substantially high.

Ditto for novozymes that makes enztymes for environmental purification.  These are firms where there is likely to be a great deal of value added into their product.

Vestas, makes wind turbines. and may be more affected by a strong kroner if they do a lot of manufacturing in Denmark but are having and sales in the US and especially if their competitors manufacture in the US or other countries where the currency is weak.

I am updating the value of major and emerging markets now at multicurrencyinvesting.com and will be revaluing our green and Danish portfolios in upcoming lessons.  You can subscribe to our Multi Currency Portfolios Course here.

I have increased my Ecuador real estate to 22% of my total property.  The balance is in US property and I am looking to add more US property now in Florida and or Savannah.

If you have real estate in central Florida or Savannah that you would like to swap for real estate in Ecuador… let me know.

I have held a high cash position for over a year but now agree with Warren Buffet who recently wrote about business and opportunity:

Clinging to cash equivalents or long-term government bonds at present yields is almost certainly a terrible policy if continued for long. Holders of these instruments, of course, have felt increasingly comfortable – in fact, almost smug – in following this policy as financial turmoil has mounted. They regard their judgment confirmed when they hear commentators proclaim “cash is king,” even though that wonderful cash is earning close to nothing and will surely find its purchasing power eroded over time.

Now is the time to convert cash into investments that will appreciate with the loss of cash’s loss of purchasing power… stocks… commodities… real estate or your own business.

This leaves all of us with a lot to do after 41 years of a global life.

I feel healthier and more energetic then 41 years ago.   Maybe I am not wiser… but I am more experienced and seem in a better position then when I took that first trip.

Merri and I look forward to the next 41 years… and we look forward to sharing them with you!

Gary

This is the schedule of Gary our 2009 Ecuador information tours, courses and seminars.

May 16-17 Ecuador Coastal Tour

May 20-21 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

May 22-24. Ecuador Amazon Herbal Tour

June 12-14 Shamanic Mingo Tour

June 16-17 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

June 18-21 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 4-8  Ecuador Export Tour

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course

Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

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.


Ecuador May – July 2009 Tours


In Ecuador we offer two 2-4-1 tours this May and June.

Economic downturn?

Yesterday’s New York Times article entitled “Jobless Rate Hits 8.5%; 663,000 Jobs Lost” said:

The unemployment rate reached its highest level in a quarter-century after 663,000 jobs were lost in March, the 15th consecutive month of job losses.

Yet our Ecuador and other businesses are expanding so fast that I can barely keep up.

More and more readers are wanting to know… “How do you increase affluence like this when so many are losing it?”

This fact creates potential profit and benefits for you.

Apparently the needs to… live in Ecuador… invest in multi currencies…  have a small international business and…  have low cost natural health secrets have all risen at once.

These are our four specialties and this creates opportunity for you. Let me explain why…

Our business has focused on these four areas for decades and as the global economic crunch is highlighting  the values of these ideas… our 41 years of  international experience has seen a growing demand.  This makes us leaders in these fields exactly when more information is required. But this also creates three dilemmas.

These dilemmas force me to (happily) create two 2-4-1 tour packages where you can attend two of our Ecuador information tours for the price of one.   2-4-1… plus a bit more.

Here are MY three dilemmas that create YOUR 2-4-1 opportunity.

Dilemma #1:  We are swamped. This May begins Merri’s & my 41st year of living, investing and doing business abroad. Here is the passport from my first airplane trip, first time out of Oregon. Portland to Vancouver, Tokyo to Hong Kong at 21 years of age.

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This is the first stamp in that passport, May 2, 1968.

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Yet we are going stronger than ever before.  This March I spoke to almost 400 delegates in Ecuador and we were involved in five tours.  Here I am speaking to almost 300 delegates at International Living’s Quito seminar.

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I spoke six times to this group.

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Then went on to conduct four more tours in Cotacachi.

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This, along with the four ezines I write, plus our investment and property management and life in general is keeping us… “kinda busy”.

Dilemma #2: We wish to remain small. This is the  fifth recession and market crash our business has thrived through (1968 – 1970s- 1980s – 1998 and now).   Part of our success is that we have remained a small (mainly just Merri and me) tightly run and controlled business.  We have had to expand some (especially with Meson de las Flores)  but overall we wish to remain a small, family business that we operate from our home.

Dilemma #3: We want to do more. I have friends and clients asking me to do seminars in May and June in both Ecuador and the US.  So I have been racking my brain to figure out how to be in two places at once.

This created the 2-4-1 concept that offers a special opportunity for you.

I cannot be in two places at once but I can make to possible for you to gain all the information I know and see what I am talking about for yourself by visiting Ecuador.

The first crunch comes in May and June when an exploding demand for information about multi currency investing and Ecuador living collide.

Jyske Bank has taken the trouble to qualify for US investors (thank God as most overseas banks are abandoning the US… with good reason).   I have agreed to help them conduct seminars in the US… the first in May when I’ll be joining Jyske Bank in Naples, Florida.

Yet we have many delegates who want to attend our real estate tours.  So we created our first 2-4-1 tour program where you can come to one of our educational courses in the US and one of two Ecuador tours for the price of one tour. 2-4-1

For example we have three Ecuador tours scheduled for May 2009.

Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour May 16-17

Imbabura-Cotacachi Real Estate Tour May 20-21

Ecuador Amazon Herbal Tour May 22-24

Merri and I will not be on these three tours and we do want to meet you. So to make sure we can meet, we will let you attend these either one of the May real estate tours free if you enroll in one of our three International Made EZ  courses, in July, October or November.

You get two courses for the price of one.  Enroll in any of these courses that Merri and I will conduct below and choose either May real estate tour free.

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina + Tangled Web

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina + Tangled Web

Nov. 6-8  IBEZ Cotacachi + Tangled Web

There is no need to  hurry either. If you are not sure about attending two tours,  sign up and attend the real tour now… then we’ll knock the tour fee off our IBEZ Cotacachi + Tangled Web course fee later.

You can also still take advantage three course discount as well.

For example, if you choose to attend all three of the May tours… both real estate and the Amazon herbal tours, then you can attend our July, October or November course free.

You can see some options below.

These three May 2009 Ecuador real estate tours are hosted by Alberto Verdezoto (a long term friend and guide as well as an expert on herbal medicine from the Amazon) and our staff.

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Here is Alberto leading our last real estate tour on the coast.

You could not be in better hands.  Alberto was in the Ecuador travel business for more than 10 years and has been our main real estate researcher for three years. He has helped us find most of the good Ecuador property deals and is doubly helpful because he bargains down the price!

Here is Alberto (left) leading our staff at International Living’s Ecuador seminar in March.

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On the coastal real estate tour,  you’ll see these houses near the beach for $19,500.

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Here is an interior shot.

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Plus on the Imbabura – Cotacachi real estate tour we’ll see these excellent houses.

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with these views and…

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with top quality finish.

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Plus on the Imbaburra – Cotacachi real estate tour we’ll look at (unless it has sold) a really well organized 12 acre avocado farm just minutes from Ibarra.  The owner has returned to Loja.  Here is the entrance.

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the main  house.

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inside living room and…

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kitchen.

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Here are both houses from the rear and…

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the back garden.

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Here, in front of the houses, is the fruit… the cash generator.

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The avocados are flowering for their first crop.

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We are told they will offer a $50,000 a year income after two years… $25,000 potential this year. (Be sure to check this out as we are not avocado farmers so cannot discern the truth.)

Asking price with these two houses, land and crops is $260,000.

You can enroll in one, two or three of these courses below

Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour May 16-17. $499 Enroll here.   $749 For a couple.

Imbabura-Cotacachi Real Estate Tour May 20-21.  $499 Enroll here.  $749 For a couple.

Ecuador Amazon Herbal Tour May 22-24.  $399 Enroll here. $499 For a couple.

Take Two for One. Attend any of the three courses below and select any one of the tours above free.

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina + Tangled Web

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina + Tangled Web

Nov. 6-8  IBEZ Cotacachi + Tangled Web

Or sign up for two or three of the May 2009 tours and attend any of the IBEZ Cotacachi + Tangled Web FREE.

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.

Learn about our July 2009 Ecuador export tour 2-4-1 deal here.