How to get things done, Ecuador style

#1: How to get Internet

1. Take taxi to internet company.  Hope you can find it even though you have been there 5 other times in the past, because no taxi driver ever seems to know where the hidden street is.

2. Find out that a lot has changed in 4 years and be glad to quickly get internet set up with installation set for 2 days later.

3. Wait on appointed day in time slot of 8am-12pm.  At 11:50am call guy who sold you internet to ask if they are coming because you are hungry.  Guy tells you of course, they will be there any minute.

4.  11:59am 4 guys show up to install internet.  It should be noted that the internet office is approximately 7 minutes from our house.  The following process occurs: show them where you want the modem, guys take ladder and put it on power lines to connect internet cable from the street pole, guys drill giant hole in the front of your house into the front room (no big deal, I wanted a giant hole there in the house that I do not own, thankyouverymuch), and then connect the cable precariously tied to the power lines to your modem.  One hour later internet is functioning and your husband has to sweep and mop the front room.

(This was actually much easier than last time when we had to go up on the roof of the building we were living in and help them install the receiver piece and then thread the cable down 4 floors into our apartment where they also drilled a hole into the wall.  It was a much smaller hole that time though.)

#2: How to buy a fridge

1. Walk 8 blocks to first store.  Carry toddlers entire way, then try not to go insane while looking at fridges while they try to break everything.

2. Decide to look at another store 8 blocks away.  Carry toddlers entire way, then try not to go insane while looking at fridges at 2 more stores.  Decide fridges at first store were cheaper and better.

3. Instead of going back to the same store, decide to go to the far away mall to look at fridges even though you know they are more expensive.   Walk 16 blocks home carrying toddlers, one of which falls asleep with her hand in her chip bag and wakes up when you try to take it way.  Eventually she falls completely asleep and chip bag falls to the ground.

4. Get home and taxi to the far away mall.  Spend 2 minutes determining that fridges really are more expensive there.  Get some groceries and taxi home.  Make everyone take a nap.

5. Around 5:30 realize that you still haven’t got a fridge and walk quickly while carrying toddlers to first store, hoping it isn’t closed.  It isn’t.

6. Tell salesman you want to buy the fridge.  Go to cash register to pay with $100 bills and everyone looks like they want to murder you.  6 employees are now required, one makes you initial all the bills and then the cashier is sent DOWN THE STREET with your money to make copies.  10 minutes later he returns, and while you have been biting your nails your husband has been trying to stop the children from destroying everything in the store.  20 more minutes pass and your bills are deemed not counterfeit, and you are given your change and a tiny regular receipt.  Maybe it’s just me, but when I am buying a fridge I want a big receipt.  I got a bigger receipt 10 minutes later when I bought $1.50 worth of candies.

7. Schedule delivery for the next morning.  Confirm 6 times that you want it in the morning.  As you are walking out salesman says “ok by noon then!”  Suddenly you wonder when you will get your fridge.

8. Wait all morning for your fridge.  At 12:15 call the store and ask where your fridge is, because it is no longer morning.  Salesman assures you that it is on it’s way.  You assure him this is not ok, because you have sat at home all morning waiting and there is no fridge at your house.  He tells you the transport company was all full and you tell him that he should not have told you he could have it delivered in the morning if he could not make that happen.  He says it’s not his fault but the transport company’s and you tell him that it is his fault and you are not especially pleased with him.  He says he can give you the transport company’s number and you tell him he can call them himself.  He then is suddenly sure that the fridge will be there any minute.

9. Wait 25 more minutes and suddenly your fridge arrives.  (It almost seems to be the right amount of time it would take to wrap your fridge in thick plastic and strap it into a ‘truck’ and drive it to your house.)  You laugh really hard because your fridge has just arrived in the back of an el camino.  Your husband tells you it is not an el camino, and is much smaller than an el camino.  You don’t care because your fridge is here and the nice “transport company” carries it up the stairs for you and now you don’t have to panic that someone has your $100 bills and you won’t be getting a fridge.

The End.

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3 Responses to How to get things done, Ecuador style

  1. Heidi Brower says:

    Thank you. hahahaha. That was the best story ever. Maybe because I could picture you, in Cuenca, with your kids and the lovely people there. It really makes me miss that place and the adventures that naturally come along with it. Keep these posts coming. I am vicariously living through you as I sit in my home where the power keeps going off and on and outside is the snow/ice storm of the century. (according to King 5, and every other station around here.) Sometimes I miss that simple life. It was so great. I love my life now, but you know what I am talking about. Especially since you are there. :)

  2. natalie says:

    Oh bless you. You are going to be so thin walking blocks holding kids. You still remain at super woman status in my book.

  3. Momo says:

    I really must say, you sound like an American living in Ecuador.

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