I'm sitting here sipping a Bailey's, vodka, and milk over ice (what would that be? A White Irishman?) to celebrate an exceptional day. Cynthia left for the States on Wednesday, a week ahead of my departure, and my days when we're apart rarely reach the stellar level. Ah, but today was an exception.
It seemed like a good omen when my propane gas guy showed up just as I was leaving for the gym this morning. I had paid for the tank six days ago, but still-----. After a vigorous workout there was a knock on the door, which was surprising because our building has two gates (and at least one of them is occasionally locked, sad to say). Outside was my landlord and another chap I knew must be a maestro. That's a fancy word here for a handyman.
I had reported a leak behind the shower in our spare downstairs bathroom yesterday afternoon. Those of you who live here know that a repairman showing up the next morning is right up there with Bigfoot and Loch Ness monster sightings. The only way to contain the leak was to turn off all the water to our apartment downstairs outside the building. That meant afterwards letting dishes pile up in the sink, not flushing the toilet, and delaying my shower until it was time for #2. Then back downstairs (we live in a 4th floor walk-up, by the way), turn on the water, go back upstairs, quickly take care of all agua-related business, go back downstairs, turn off the water, and go back upstairs.
Knowing Cuenca's award-losing service reputation I had mentally prepared myself for an entire weekend of this madness, so I was cautiously overjoyed by the unexpected appearance of my two visitors. I say "cautiously" because the arrival of a maestro only means just that---he has arrived. Him actually accomplishing anything is a crap shoot, especially if he has to leave to get a part. How many of us have misunderstood that his promise to be back in two hours really meant two days? The "mañana culture" in all its glory.
So guess what. He had to go get a part. Oh, boy-----.
And then he came back with the part! HE CAME BACK!! And he repaired the shower. And for good measure he fixed a funky light fixture in the kitchen. Wow!
Had nothing else happened the rest of the day I would have been very happy, but "the hits just kept on coming." I was so pumped I sat down and cranked out rough drafts for our next three GringoTree columns. If you're not reading those I wish you would. Cynthia and I collaborate on weekly conversations about expat life, and since you read this blog I think you'll find them entertaining.
Then my phone rang. It was the technicians who were scheduled to come by this afternoon to pick up our dryer for maintenance. When I made the appointment earlier this week I calculated the odds of them actually showing up as none and none, yet here they were. Now I actually think we may get our dryer back!
I had some towels in the washer that I hung up to dry on the stair railing upstairs. I felt so Ecuadorian, so culturally immersed. If only I could say all that in Spanish.
The evening ended with a productive business dinner meeting downtown. I walked home feeling really good about life. After finishing this post I'm off to bed, ready for an uneventful recovery day tomorrow.