Saturday, September 18, 2010

Weak Week

Grab this related post Widget!
I wish I could entertain you with lots of funny stories about being "Home Alone" in a foreign country, but it really hasn't been that kind of a week. Once each entry is published I honestly don't read my own blog so I can't remember if I mentioned this, but the reason Cynthia is in the States is because her sister is dying.

And this isn't one of those, "Well, she's old and had a good life" situations. No, we're talking mid-forties and leaving behind a loving husband and 6 (tomorrow) year old daughter. Very, very tough. And casting a l-o-o-o-n-n-n-g shadow over all of us, even reaching from LA to Ecuador.

My coping mechanism for "alone-ness" has been to be overly busy. You saw that the refrigerator finally found its way home. That was only Monday morning. Since then curtains have been installed, electricians have almost moved in they've been here so much, measurements were taken for the handrails on the staircase, plasterers have been plastering, and our damaged dining room table has been shipped out for repairs.

So I've pretty much been kicking ass and taking names. And in between all that furious activity I've also been accepting every possible invitation--3 hour lunches, late night dinner and drinks--pretty much anything to one-thing-at-a-time suspend the reality that I'm on my own in Cuenca, Ecuador.

Today and tonight for the first time I really am alone. On purpose. During another dinner last evening I actually turned down an invitation to go out of town for the weekend because I realized my overcompensation is both understandable and unsustainable. There's 3 1/2 weeks until my sweetheart returns and my body absolutely cannot take the abuse like the old (young) days.

This morning I slept late, cooked myself some bacon and eggs, then went to the gym. I got out the recipe book, strapped on the backpack, mounted my bike and went to the mercado for produce, a deli for meat, and the SuperMaxi for everything else. Made egg salad, barbeque sauce (ribs tomorrow, baby--yeah) and from-scratch Caesar dressing (fyi--all the bottled salad dressing here sucks!). All the while drinking vodka and belting out some Journey and Eagles. Found time for a long nap somewhere in there.

It's raining right now and the streets are quiet. I'm enjoying a glass of vino and noticing, really for the first time, how excellent our apartment looks at night with strategic lights on here and there. Would be much better if I were enjoying the moment with my bride but pretty damn good nonetheless.

Our new microwave is on the fritz for the 3rd time; 2 "blog buddies" are in town; I'm joining a local biking group; I'm opening a checking account and maybe investing in an Ecuadorian CD; I need to get our TV up and running---hopefully the coming week will produce more of those entertaining stories I very much enjoy writing and you seem to enjoy reading!

I don't even know many of you who follow my blog, and I can't begin to express how much your interest and support mean to me. Thanks for everything.


Patrick said...

Hi, this may sound rather goofy or stupid (and no it does not take me an hour and a half to watch the TV show 60 minutes) But....

I follow your blog quite a bit, I look usually once per day hoping for a post. No I'm not stocking you the dryer ate all mine.

I enjoy your perspective, whit and candor.

So be advised your cyber 1011001010010's are heard.

I do want to say thanks because I one day want to move to Cuenca and out of several blogs enjoy your writings most of all. That's the truth or I would just tell you otherwise.

Hey, I hope all turns out ok for your wife with what she has to go through.
Oh, and...
When he get's their he knows if the stores are all closed with his own fridge he can get what he came for.


Karen Kimbler said...

I hope that you find a good balance until your "bride" comes home. Its times like these that I always wish I still had my favorite teddy bear, it always made me feel alittle less alone. Of course, Randy thinks more vodka and louder music with a cigar is a better idea. Take care

Deb said...

My Georgia Tech hubby and I are tossing around the idea of retiring in Cuenca. We currently live in Chattanooga, having escaped Atlanta, now looking to escape the rat race. I have learned so much from your journey, as well as from the other expats that have paved the road, or at least have attempted to map out the potholes. I had planned to ask you about your corporate Visa, but will hold that for another time. Now, I just want to say that my heart goes out to you, your wife and family.

Edd Staton said...

Patrick, I appreciate you artificially inflating my readership #'s with the daily visit, but if you prefer you can be notified by email each time there's a new post or sign up for an RSS feed right on the blog.

Karen, I'm so incredibly thankful to be "home alone" in Cuenca instead of Las Vegas. In 4 months we have a contact list here of over 100 folks; we left Vegas after 4 years with one new friend.

Deb, I feel your pain. We lived in Atlanta most of our lives. Kept moving further and further out--finally we gave up and fled to Charleston. Email me about the visa questions when you're ready.

indel said...

No, you are not alone. It might help if you brought the refrigerator back, to the second floor, so you would have another two or three days of activity (including the photos):-)
Our thoughts are with you, your wife, and the family in these difficult times.

Anonymous said...

If you're curious about readership you can install a free visit counter at Even the free version is easy to install and gives you an idea of what is being read and when we are reading.
... and know that another stranger's prayers are with your family.

Jim said...

Edd, I'm very sorry to hear about Rachel's sister, and to leave a six year old behind--not easy on the family or the little girl. My prayers are with both of you. Rachel will be home soon enough. Until then may I suggest you use this time to learn to be comfortable in your own skin with yourself when you are alone. Being alone does not mean you have to be lonely.

Anonymous said...

OK. Drinking vodka alone, attending party after party, and writing parodies of Led Zeppelin, while doing yoga.

Sounds like the caricature of a directionless gringo 'going native'… and here I had so much hope that someone conservative would be telling other Americans in the Obamanation why it's better somewhere else….