Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Today is our 8th wedding anniversary. We always enjoy telling our story when people ask how we met... "on the internet".. ok, so its not so funny now, but 8 years ago internet dating us just hitting its heyday, and it was every mothers fear that her daughter was going to be swept off her feet by some creepy person. To my mothers relief I was not one of those, and I actually found a great guy, or rather I should say we were lucky to find each other!

I started my day by sleeping in till an ungodly hour, Randy said that was his present to me. I think he just likes the quiet and is able to "futz" around without me getting in the way or talk at him during his chill time when he listens to music. Well, for whatever reason I was a happy camper to take a leisurely approach to the day.

At 1:00 we loaded up at the El Nomad office and headed out to our cooking class being held at Ida's family country home in Paute, just 40 min. outside of Cuenca. Ida had offered to have us all over, and the 7 of us "students" were all up for a trip to see this place that Arturo & Becca had raved about.  We were not dissapointed. Its a 90 year old farmhouse that is HUGE, and with terraces that have a great view of the valley and the Paute river. There are flowers, trees, ducks, turkeys, geese, and we also saw a cute white rabbit.
We started with a wonderful dish that Ida made called Mote... ugh, I forgot the last part... well it had what we call in the US , hominy (mote).. onion, pork, sausage, chorizo and a to die for broth... so I am sure someone will comment and tell me what that name of the dish was as well as the recipe... Becca???
Now remember we haven't even started our class yet. This was just a "appetizer" that  Ida wanted to make for us! Next we had a little dessert. Of which I cannot remember the name. But the little round thing is fruit, and the cake it made from a flour made from the roots of the Canna Lily! The names here are all different but we were so amazed when they showed us the plant after we had eaten the "appetizer".
As we started out walk they showed us the really old oven outside that was and is still used to cook bread and even meat.
The next pictures are just along our walk. These are just one beautiful thing after another.
Air plant, they grow everywhere here
Randy posing...
Brennie found the perfect rock
Bougainvillea grows wild here!
rock wall made with pieces of petrified wood!
After our walk we went back up to start the cooking class. Let me say right here. Whoever invented the deveiner for shrimp should win some kind of award! Our class was shrimp ceviche and another shrimp dish...but as I may have mentioned before this is a hands on class. We all got to peel and devein the shrimp. Its a messy business and we all had some special comments about the whole process. Here is a dish we were using to wipe the veins off our hands so we could work on another shrimp.

We did enjoy eating the food, and we fell upon it so fast that I did not even take one picture of what we ate! I did get a few of the cute baby Kesha sleeping while we worked.
I forgot to explain that this house is built up on a 1st floor. We thought it was only for storage, but Chela showed us that there was a small chapel downstairs. Remember this house is 90 years old, so I image back then the country they would have small chapels in their homes if there was not a church nearby.

There were other pretty flowers, the river, palms, odd "plum" trees, lime and lemon trees. What a day. Here are some more pictures.
Canna's, leaves for tamales and ground root flour for cake!

Oh what a day, we were pooped. We got home about 7 and just plopped down. It was a fun day in the country, we got to celebrate our anniversary in a fun way, with fun people, and made new friends in the process. We are looking forward to more times like these in the days ahead!

If you have not noticed I added two new links to my favorite blogs list. They are the El Nomad Suggests and the Facilitators Cuenca Ecuador. These are Arturo and Beccas other services that they offer. I am totally endorsing them as go to people. They have assisted us several times and now I am happy to say they are looking to offer that service to others. Give them a try, you wont be disappointed!


  1. Yep, gotta agree. It was a great time. AND ....Happy Anniversary!

  2. What fun! Gorgeous scenery, good friends, exotic food (and look at that blue pottery! I could eat anything on that). Can't wait to visit Cuenca now . . . Happy 8th Anniversary!!

  3. Oh Karen, how much fun you are having. I am so happy for you. And happy anniversary! Missing you lots!