La Bella Crucita – 12/18/2018

It was warm sleeping last night despite the floor fan.  The steady surf providing a mariner’s lullaby.

This morning about twenty or so fishing boats just off the coast gathered together in what we assume is the best spot; it’s hazy but the surf is gentler than yesterday.

The malecon is decorated with holiday hanging, a magical transformation since last night.


Cafe con leche and rolls for breakfast at the Marinero Restaurante.


Once nourished back to Fremas Comercial which is open now.  Basic food stuffs, some hand towels, spices, limes, papel higenico, paper towels and a face cloth.  The remaining items will have to wait until the trip to Puertoviejo.

Our first ride on the trimoto returning to Las Dumas with the groceries.


The TV remote is still missing.  On our return there is a text message from Russell – the air conditioner is going to be replaced at some time this week – apologies for the inconvenience.  The replacement will occur a la hora conveniente for sure, knowing the “manana nunca viene”, “talvez, quizas” – all expressions of “vamos a ver” – “let’s see”, “whenever”, no rush.

Russell informs us that the remote has been missing since his last visit.  A button on the bottom right side of the TV will turn it on and then the cable box remote will control the rest.

The washer/dryer combination is more like thorough washing, damp drying.

“Nilla, look what I found in the back yard!  We can come hang out here with the laundry!”

Hanging out to dry – this is no fun, we’re not the laundry!!!

The limes have to be washed in a solution of water and Kilol.  Instead of using the bottled water, boiling the water for 15 minutes and then allowing cooling before the additive drops will work just fine.

Although some places in Quito and Cuenca tap water is safe to drink, here on the coast it is not.  Fruits and vegetables need to be washed in solutions containing Kilol, Vitalin, concentrated grapefruit extract, plus or minus vinegar and lemon juice.  There are many suggested formulas but, we’re keeping it simple.

In the afternoon, it’s time for a walk – we leave another small load in the laundry machine and take off down the malecon.  We notice evacuation signs in case of a tsunami.  Since 1906 there have been four tsunamis, the tallest of which reached 6.1 meters.  Most of the tsunamis have occurred along the northern coast shared by Ecuador and Colombia, however the last earthquake triggering a tsunami warning with significant loss of life, happened in 2016, a 7.8 magnitude quake, the strongest in decades, with a major impact in Manta, Portoviejo and Guayquil – hundreds of miles from the epicenter.  There was no tsunami, deaths were related to building collapse.


Fishing boats are still off the coast. A solitary sandpiper explores the sands looking for a tasty morsel and a lifeguard sits on his perch looking over the beach and sea.


On the way back we stop at Las Ramblas, a sushi bar, for a little refreshment and meet Joffre who is very friendly and informative.  Two girls arrive and order micheladas, both beer-based beverages with local fruit.


There is a beautiful creche along the walkway on the malecon.


Once back at Las Dumas we notice water coming from the front door!  The laundry machine has overflowed and flooded the utility room and the apartment next door.  There is little we can do except contact Russell and text Amarita.  We don’t have keys to the apartment – unplugging the washer/drier does not stop the continuous water – closing the hot and cold shut off valves finally stops the flow.

What’s going to happen next?

Again texting to Russell and Amarita – with minimal response, Russell is probably at work and Amarita may be away from her home and WiFi.

A call to the Kleber, the maintenance person,  the same one that was here yesterday. He is aware that the washer/drier is on the fritz and will look at it the same time he comes to install the new air conditioner – whenever that may be, he’s waiting for the unit to be delivered.

Others in the complex seem nonchalant about our trials – as these sorts of occurrences are bound to happen matter-of-factly.  While in the U.S. we expect things like this to happen in threes.

Amarita is waiting for her husband to come home from Puertoviejo and come to survey the situation – in about an hour’s time.

Dinner.  Back to Las Ramblas for some sushi.  Jeff and Jonathan are chatting at a table outside and are glad to see us return.  Tuna tataki, tuna cruda and Osaka roll are delicious.

Tito and Amarita are standing outside the property when we return.  They have opened up the apartment’s front sliding door allowing the water to be pushed out onto the sidewalk.  The rugs are draped over the small wall adjacent to the apartment.  After explaining what happened, Amarita tells us not to worry, there’s a warranty on the machine if it needs to be replaced.

Doors left open airing out the apartment and the utility room coupled with moisture is an open invitation for opportunistic six-legged critters. Mmmmm.

Rather than wait until the air conditioner and laundry machine issues are rectified, it is decided that tomorrow we’re off to Portoviejo – a text to Dina and confirmation from Jean Carlos for 10:00 pick-up is the plan.


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