Saturday, September 12, 2015
"Plan A" Travel Preparations: Back to Cuenca Soon!
We received word via email Monday September 7th from our Visa Facilitator, Joseph Guznay of Quito, that my Permanent Visa is now approved. Carolyn Anne's was already approved late July.
What remains is the process of getting them placed in our US Passports. Joseph also informed us that he will present the US Passports to the EC Ministario de Relaciones Exteriores in Quito on Wednesday September 16th. On this date the new Visas will finally be affixed into the Passports. On this same day Joseph assures us he will courier our Passports/Visas to our abogados in Cuenca - per prior agreement - and Merci, our bilingual receptionist will immediately send them out to us via (prepaid) DHL international air courier to the USA at our specified address.
Looking at the calendar, I can see this is - once again similar to how we reobtained our US Passports to fly out of Quito - a "tightrope" of a schedule to get our US Passports with newly installed Visas back to us here in California. On Wednesday 9/16 the items are to be in country couriered using Coloaustro abogados' in house courier service. I'm hoping they use air service for that. Conceivably they arrive to Merci at Coloaustro in Cuenca Thursday 9/17, and she sends them out the same day or possibly Friday 9/18 at the latest. We already know that DHL is capable of delivering documents from Cuenca, Ecuador to the USA in 72 hours or less and vice versa. So that would mean a delivery date of Monday 9/21. Our airline tickets are set for a redeye hour of Tuesday 9/22, end of day before midnight. So not a lot of room for error on anyone's part - Joseph, Merci, or DHL. Just in case, I will have to be ready to "pull the plug" and call United Airlines and reschedule our flight back to Quito. . . but I pray that won't ever be necessary. Lord knows we need for this whole situation to be resolved, on time rather than with yet another delay.
All that said, we have been operating as if and preparing as if we are to leave the USA on schedule beginning Tuesday 9/22 from LAX. So visiting friends has been going on, making certain strategic purchases of items sold here in the USA and California has been done (yep - goods from China are still plentiful here as they are back in Ecuador) and our last activity will be to see how it all fits as planned in our suitcases. We bought one more large size suitcase from Costco in Oxnard for a very reasonable price, so our additional costs to ship some additional desired goods will be the $200 extra baggage fee United will charge us, plus the cost of the suitcase ($89.99 plus tax). Not too bad in terms of additional costs for what we will bring back.
Our health is better too from my cold and Carolyn Anne's pneumonia. One fly in the ointment for her is that she seems to have misplaced one prescription drug she started taking over a week ago. She probably left it at my cousin's in Cambria. Carolyn Anne is taking another over the counter (USA style) drug to replace that one. It alleviates cough symptoms she is still suffering from. I asked her if she wanted to go back to the LA County health clinic in Lancaster where they prescribed her misplaced prescription drug. She says she doesn't want to wait the three hours - again - for getting the doctor to write another prescription. In Ecuador, she'd have it in a jiffy by visiting any number of farmacias, with little to no wait time. Something she fumes about in the USA, and something she is grateful for back in Ecuador.