Featured Post

Friday, January 24, 2014

Ends and Odds

I need a new computer (as does my Mom).  My laptop is missing the following keys:

  • F8
  • 4 (or $ sign)
  • 0 (or ) sign)
  • N
There's just tiny stubs left for me to press.   I think one of my kitties has been doing dastardly things to my laptop.  Revenge, maybe.

I have so many things to write about, they're piling up.   So, I'm gonna try to condense a few into one publishing.  Here goes:

Yet Another Celebration

Celebrations seem to continue well after Christmas here.   Taking the shortcut from my 'hood' to Banos, Cuenca for my weekly hot springs treat, I traverse a ridge comprising of a few small communities, Misicata being one of them.   

One particular night, the community was out decorating their streets.  They used long, skinny eucalyptus trees  (sometimes PVC pipe) to bend and create an arch over the street.  Then, they decorated it with boughs of green, flowers, or even cheerleader pom-poms!!!  Several arches were created, along with plastic streamers (of the high school prom variety) spanning fence lines or zig-zagging overhead.

Why?  It was all for the Virgin de Guadalupe (whoever SHE is!!!).   'She' would be passing through their community along with floats (pickups decorated in...ummm...whatever) and lots and lots of folks dressed up as various religious characters.   The VDG is a.....(ducking to avoid lightning strikes).... a

Whew!!!   I'm still alive.

Anyway, here's a few photos of what the preparations look like.  It's no Pasadena Rose Parade, but it's an event that brings neighbors and friends together and they take a lot of pride in what they do and no one judges them because it's so 'tacky' as so many from back home might say.  It's fun.  It doesn't have to be perfect.   Kinda like the 1950's.

A lot of bouganvilla used here.

The neighborhood of La Concordia welcomes the Virgen de Guadalupe.

Small bouquets of flowers hanging upside down.

The portal to the neighborhood was some sort of volcano thingy.

"Inch by inch, row by row, I'm gonna make this garden grow"

Ahhh....PP&M (Peter, Paul & Mary).   Mary was an acquaintance of mine (RIP sweetie).

I continue to expand my garden.  Recently, I decided to rip out the bathtub from one of my short-term rental apartments and convert it to a large shower.   What to do with the bathtub?

Answer...add it to my garden as a water feature!!!!

The before picture.  I don't know why it's not displaying correctly.  I ripped out a lot of rock to re-use in a new border.

Add one bathtub.

Create new rock border, add 10 bags of black dirt, paint bathtub black.

Mix in flowers and plants to fill as desired.  Add dog to background.

Add water plants to mix in well.

Take photos of results.

Add water pump and fountain head to create splishy-splashy sound.


My other flowers - Calla Lilly.

I love the dusty color of this red rose.

My bearded Iris's are starting to pop color.   This IS January, right?
My white Calla Lilies just keep producing tall white flowers, but the colored ones produce, die back, re-grow, and re-produce flowers.  I LOVE these colors!!!

This flower is called Angels Trumpet.  The blooms are about 10 - 12 inches long and hang upside down.   If you digest any part of the flower, it will cause hallucinations.  

A few more Churches

Everywhere you turn in Cuenca, there's another church.   Here's a few shots I took while enjoying the Innocentes Parade which I wrote about a few articles back.

San Blas anchors the end of Calle Simon Bolivar.

Night Skies

Needs no 'splaining.

Hosteria Santa Barbara

In the town of Gualaceo, about 30 minutes from Cuenca, is a 'new' hosteria where you can escape to, and enjoy the facilities for $12 a day for day-use, or stay a few nights and lose yourself in luxury.  The property was purchased for 1 million bucks, renovated, and in some cases new structures built.   They have rooms, a restaurant, steam rooms, jacuuzi, pool, turkish steam boxes, horseback riding, tennis, disco/bar, and gardens of perfection.

I was hired to drive a couple to the site to spend the day.  I was lucky to be able to walk through the premises and get a first-hand look of what they have to offer.  The setting was romantic, immaculate (I couldn't find one astray leaf!!!), and luxurious.   See for yourself.

The approach.  The walkway was so immaculate it was as if someone licked it clean.

This is what Lucy used when she tried to lose a dress size so she could fit into the outfit she needed to wear to perform in Ricky's show.

The hotel part of the hosteria.

Reminds me a LOT of my old stomping grounds....Palm Springs.
A Bit of a Facelift

Betcha I got your attention NOW, eh?    No, No...not me....I am perennially 39 just like Jack Benny.

My modern loft apartment I rent to short-term visitors.

I never liked the tub/shower combo because it was awkward when you stepped in....almost onto the slant of the back of the tub.   Plus, it looked drab.   I decided to have the tub ripped out and the vacated space re-tiled by my TDP (Team de Patricio) so it would end up a large shower space.   You'll see what I mean in these photos:

Before the transformation.

Patricio, after the glass shower doors and frames were removed....picking to remove the existing tiles.

This is what we found underneath.  Original construction debris used to 'support' the former fiberglass tub frame.   ICK!!

The tub removed.  Soon to see a new life as a water feature in my garden.  Who'd of thunk???

Patricio (right) and his slaves....errrr....workers installing the new tile for the shower.

Almost done.

Final product...a large walk-in shower.


Find Cuenca Vacation Rentals on FlipKey

Find Cuenca Vacation Rentals on FlipKey


  1. Looks good - garden I mean.. .and you sure those flowers for the Virgin and not you??? :-)

    Hope to meet you after I get there - 39 more sleeps

  2. Do you remember where in Cuenca you purchased the water pump for your fountain? Thanks

    1. Hi Ron. I got the pump at Coral in the area where they sell aquariums.


Wanna leave a comment? PLEASE DO!!

It's not very intuitive, so let me help you...
1. Write your comment
2. From the list of Comment As, just select Anonymous
3. If you want me to know who you are, simply type your name inside the comment box, at the end.
4. Press the Publish button
5. Click the box I'm Not a Robot
6. Press the Publish button again
7. If a 'test question' comes up, answer it and press the button
8. If you passed the 'test question' press Publish

About Me

My photo
Palma, Mallorca, Spain
This is all about my transition from an American lifestyle and culture to my newest adventure, life in Spain, in the city of Palma on the island of Mallorca in the middle of the Mediterranean sea!! I moved from the USA to Cuenca, Ecuador, South America and lived there for 7 years before moving here to Spain in early 2018. To read about my adventures in Ecuador, check out my other blog "Ahhh Cuenca!!". I'll be recapping some of my day-to-day experiences (and mishaps) to highlight what it's like to live in Europe....across the pond.

Total Views