Monday, February 13, 2012


I have had a delightful time with my "friends" on Facebook. There are my regular folks who I have as friends on MY facebook page, and then there are those who are my Ecuador Expat friends. This is a closed group of which you have to be invited, or you ask to join. You are either a current resident in Ecuador or trying your "darndest" to get here. It is a very fun bunch of folks with lots of good questions, and even better yet, lots of great answers!  (you can ask to join here).

While chatting with folks I have become aquainted with quite a few folks who I have never met face to face. We all feel like we know each other, and to that end, when one of the group said they were coming to Cuenca, I invited them to spend the nite here.. well of course I did..(yes, once again, Randy was taken by surprise).

Graciella Wakefield and her friend Zenerida Gonzales came to visit. Gracie is from Guayaquill and Zenerida is from Piura, Peru. These two met on a tour that Gracie was hosting in her city, a few years ago, and have become fast friends. Since that time they have traveled to several cities together, Cuenca was one that both longed to visit.

  Zenerida understands English perfectly, and Gracie is totally bilingual so the three of us chatted away with perfect harmony, and they were so sweet to encourage me to stumble through my Spanish when I felt I had a few words I could put together!

Unfortunately they had a late start and were not able to arrive until late Sat. evening. We
 "wowed" them with our left overs and veggie tortilla rolls. Talked their ears off till about 9pm and then we released them to sleep. The next morning we were off to see the city..
We rode the bus in and walked up Calle Larga.. we stopped at the Panama Hat Museum..
Then we headed over to the Itur office so we could get the lowdown on the double decker bus times as well as trips to the Cajas. We ended up only going on the local tour as the bus to the Cajas was not going today.

While we waited to board the bus, we enjoyed the harpist playing out front of the Old Cathedral, now a museum.

The music definately spoke to Gracie.. as you will see in this video!

The view from Turi was beautiful.. Zenerida grabbed a few presents to take back home, and the bus drivers changed the flat that we had about an hour previously..guess there are two tires on each side, why stop.. whats the problem??

I told both of the ladies that I was happy to revisit these places with them, because when you live here you sometimes overlook the beauty that is around you.. today, on my 5th visit to Turi, I saw some of the cemetary, tucked away behind the Church.

After the tour, I left the two ladies to meander on their own, with written directions for the return taxi. They arrived back at the house, safe and sound, tired; but with big smiles and talking of when they would return to visit again!
Buen Viaje Graciella y Zenerida!


  1. Well said about FB & Expat friends (whether we've had a chance to meet them in person or not). So true!
    Glad you had chance to meet Graciela - just talked with her over the phone a week or so ago, and can't wait to meet her person too!
    Hugs to Randy and "hi" to everyone in Cuenca.

  2. Looks like you had a fun time with Graciela and Zenerida. I've seen Graciela's posts in FB Ecuador Expats and almost feel like I know her, too.

    Wonderful photos and video! I laughed at the two gentlemen walking by and doing a doubletake at Gracie singing and dancing...LOL

    Thanks for sharing, Karen.