- If, for some reason, I get stranded in Ecuador, they will lend me up to $2000 to get back to the states and to cover incidental costs in the meantime. They hang on to my passport until the money is paid back--it still sounds like a good deal--far better than being stuck in a foreign country.
- They can help with absentee voting.
- They will provide mailing services to get documents to places like Social Security and such. Apparently that's an important service.
- If you get locked up in prison, the guy from the Embassy will visit once or twice a month (now that's comforting).
- If we have to be evacuated, it's up to the pilot of the evacuation plane whether or not a pet is allowed to leave as well. He suggested finding a local who could take the pet for a short period of time in case that were to happen.
After that I went to Serendipity for lunch. It's one of two restaurants where you can generally count on English-speaking customers. I figured there would be more than usual right after the meeting and I was right. The soup of the day was cream of tomato and it was fabulous.
Sitting at the table right next to me were a couple from Wisconsin and their tour guide from Quito. We struck up a conversation (surprise) and it turns out the guide brings small groups of people up here to show them around and she asked me if I would be willing to tell her group why I love Cotacachi. Of course I would! I love telling people about all the fabulous things here.
I also discovered a shared ride service that goes from Quito to Otavalo for around $15 and then the bus from Otavalo is just 25 cents. That sounds a lot better than the car services. I have her email address and I'll be getting more information from her about that. It's great to have an alternative to either the bus or a very expensive car service.
It doesn't take much to make me happy, does it?