A former high school classmate and cherished old friend when reconnecting with Roger through Facebook quoted the old saying: "When God closes a door, he opens a window." The years have seen a number of life changes for us that make that adage ring true. After being blessed with good fortune, a wonderful son and great experiences, we decided to look out that window and prepare for more of what this wonderful life has to offer. We hope through our blog to share our journey from this point forward with family, with friends and with many others. Hopefully we'll make some new friends along the way. We hope you find our tales of some interest, even amusement and perhaps an inspiration for you to treat each and every day as an opportunity and an adventure to share with those who are an important part of your life.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

OMG! It's Brennie!

Brenda Eddy had no reason to think that it was anything but another typical morning in Cuenca as she left Edificio La Quadra II following a visit to a pair of good friends. It was then her thoughts were interrupted by an excited shout "Oh my God, it's Brennie!".
Suzanne hadn't reacted like that to seeing someone in person for the first time since the 60's. As a young teen she had screamed when she saw Peter Noone of Herman's Hermits in his first Chicago concert. What had prompted this groupie-fan style outburst decades later at the entryway to an otherwise quiet condomiumium residence in Ecuador?

A recap of the events since our last blog may shed some light: Since then we boarded a flight from Atlanta to Quito enroute to Cuenca for our planned two month stay. The flight went well, arriving late in the evening in Quito. Our first experience with altitude adjustment occurred on a near breathless hike to baggage claim and customs. Things appeared to be going better when 3 of our 4 pieces of checked luggage came off together in the first wave. Our last piece was literally that...last. Needless to say, that led to some quality anxiety time. The anticipated hotel shuttle was not to be found, cell phones were inoperable and no courtesy phones were to be found so we invested an extra half hour arranging transport. It was early am when we finally hit the sack. It appearred booking the later flight to Cuenca on LAN was a wise choice. Not so wise was failing to read LAN's baggage restrictions which were roughly half the weight restiction for Delta. Oh well, a few trips back and forth (not to mention a few extra dollars) and we were on our way. In Cuenca, Roger nearly tripped over the luggage cart laughing as we exited baggage claim. He had immediately recognized our host landlord Bob (of Bob n Rox fame). To insure we could find our ride, Bob was waving a sign that read "The Wine Guy". Bob got us to our apartment and we settled in, armed with some names and phone numbers we could use if we needed help (our landlords were leaving shortly, but more about that to come on their bean spilling from us!) We didn't have working cells, but we had taken the step of having them unlocked and ready to receive a local sim card, hopefully from the provider convenietly located next door. (Don't wager real money on how that worked out). O.K. We'll just email some local expats we've been in contact with for advice and help. Ooops, we traveled with an I-pad which requires wireless and the apartment only has a direct modem. There were also no unlocked wifi networks showing on our computer. No problem, have the security desk guy call everyone's favorite guide and facilitator Fabian (Bob had wisely written down his name and number).

This brings us to morning in question. Roger is in the parking lot discovering the driver who has arrived is not Fabian, doesn't speak a lick of English, and when inquired about where to go for cell phone service pointed to the Mission Impossible store where Roger had already failed. Suzanne was on her way back into the building to at least retrieve Fabian's name and number when she spied Brenda Eddy on her way out.

Although we had never met, we've been reading her husband Clarke Green's blog for nearly a year and Roger and Clarke connected recently on Facebook. Imagine the excitement at seeing a familiar friendly face. It was a welcome sight in a tempest of confusion. Brennie turned out to a sweet and gracious samaritan, phoning Fabian who in turn sent brother Miguel who got us phone equipped and later that day helped get us oriented to our new city. Brennie even got us introduced to our new neighbors Val & Will. With phones in hand, we advised Mick and Kathy another bag of dog food had found its way to Ecuador. Later Roger found a computer store with wireless modem. We shopped, got to meet George and family plus Rick and Nancy at the California kitchen. We were able to let family at home know we were safe and even began to catch our breath (literally as well as figuratively).
As we watched fireworks from our balcony this evening, we felt exicited and blessed to be here. With a little help from new found friends, we remain juntos en el camino de la vida.


  1. So happy you got here safely, and "fell" in with good folks! Enjoy your stay!

  2. was fun running into you two 'groupies'. We were group singing "Henry the VIII" at some friend's house just recently! Is our age showing??? Glad you made it safely and also glad I could lend a hand to help you across the rocky part of the stream. All I ask is that you 'pay it forward!' Looking forward to getting to know you both~

  3. I'm glad to hear that you managed, through all of the difficulties, to get settled in Cuenca. My husband and I will be making the same trek, from Atlanta, in August for a 2 week look-see. If it's alright with you I may be contacting you for some advice once I'm ready to nail down our reservations.
    I enjoy your blog. Thanks


  4. Thanks for giving such an in depth description of your travels to your new home for 2 months (and maybe longer.) It's an adventure......