By Ed Konderla
I don’t really have a clue of how to even start this. Even while I think of it, the whole thing sounds weird as hell to me. First of all an introduction is in order for those who don’t know me. My name is Ed Konderla and my wife of 25 years, Tresa and I have lived in Ecuador a total of 10 years and we are both Ecuadorian citizens. We are both originally from Texas. My wife is a retired public school teacher and I am a retired God knows what. If after reading this you think I’m a nut case, I can provide references.
To say my background is “varied” would be the understatement of the century. I attended Catholic School from Kindergarten to the 12 th grade where religion was a subject just like math. After graduation from high school I attended Belle and Howell Devry Technical college for a year where I took Electronic Engineering. I actually majored in pot, acid and partying. Being concerned that I was going to die young, I joined the Air Force where, God help us all, I had a Top Secret Security Clearance and was a Technician on the weapons control system of the F-4E Phantom fighter bomber for 4 years. I left the service with an honorable discharge. After that my life and career became so crazy that I if I put it all down you would think I was lying.
So, in order to make a long, tedious story as short as I, can let’s just say that somehow my wife and I ended up with a farm an hour and a half outside Cuenca in rural Ecuador. What we actually purchased was a view that required us to buy 16 acres. On a clear day from our deck we can see the Pacific 53 miles away. We are at the same elevation as Cuenca and from my gate I can see Santa Isabel and Giron below us.
Let me make a subtle segue here. I’m interested in meeting people that want to find the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything. I don’t have a real interest in dictating how you want to go about that endeavor, but at some level those are the people I am looking for. I’m a student, if you will, of the Yaqui Way of Knowledge and a number of other teachers and paths. I have recently become aware of a guy named Bernardo Kastrup who I think completely knocks it out of the park. Check him out on Youtube, but be forewarned, he has a Phd in computer science and AI and a Phd in philosophy so he will make your brain hurt. My neighbors all think I am Catholic and if you need me to say I am not, you and I might not gee haw.
Which leads me to my neighbors. We are the only gringos out here. Our neighbors are the damndestly amazing people I have ever met. They are all Catholic, although what that means to them who see a priest once every three months and what that means to me is probably different. We are probably told once a week how highly everybody thinks of Tresa and me and this means everything to us. Bottom line, not interested in people that look down on them and people that aren’t going to have a positive impact on this community.
Here is what I am knocking around in my mind. With the help of a couple of my neighbors, I have built two houses from scratch out here. Both are earthbag construction complete with earthen floors and plaster. One house is about 1100 sq. ft. the other is a round house of about 490 sq. ft. The round house is thought of as a guest house. We have WIFI in both houses probably at least as good, if not better than, you have in Cuenca. What I would like to do is start getting together with some folks and brainstorming some issues. There is a lot to do out here and in the area. The air is pure, as is the water. We have lots of trees and, if for no other reason, coming out will get you out of Cuenca. There will be no charge for anything, but you will need to bring your own food if you are staying overnight. My intent is to run this up the flagpole and see if anyone salutes. If there are no takers then the answer is easy. If however, I get a big response we’ll have to look at where we go from here. More details will be forthcoming about the logistics of coming out here, what there is to do once you are out here, what subjects you may want to talk about. As an example, in western civilization there is a real move in science and the media to deny any meaning in life. I personally think that is just flat out wrong and, even if I didn’t I think, it is a mistake for society to head down that path.
My email is firstname.lastname@example.org. Comment here or email me.
Cheers and Hasta Marijuana,