Expat Life

Editor’s note: The following is a sample of Cuencano opinions about English-speaking expats living in Cuenca. They were compiled by University of Cuenca graduate student Silvia Lara for a research project about immigration. The comments were translated into English by Carlos Fernando Flores. “I lived in the U.S. for 27 years and appreciate the way...
By Renee Onque Supplements, superfoods, and health hacks are advertised constantly to those looking to live a long, healthy life, but focusing on just those quick solutions is not very effective, according to leading longevity researcher Dan Buettner. On a recent episode of “Ten Percent Happier with Dan Harris,” Buettner, who popularized the world’s Blue...
For most people, taking a vacation and going to the dentist are mutually incompatible prospects. After all, the thought of sitting in a dentist’s chair with a drill in your month isn’t quite as appealing as sitting on a tropical beach sipping a piña colada. Adam Altholtz, the American owner of the “Find Health in...
By Michael Littmann If you have been reading CHL and other gringo publications over the past few months you will have read about the corruption and mismanagement within the Cuenca Social Security (IESS) hospital, Jose Carrasco Arteaga, and the members of the expat community less than satisfied with IESS. Cancer radiation machine broken. Knee problems...
By Elizabeth Heath If you’ve flown on a commercial flight more than a handful of times, you know the drill. Once the aircraft door makes that familiar “thunk” noise upon closing and that cold air starts blasting from overhead, the flight attendant will instruct passengers to switch their phones to “airplane mode.” And while it’s difficult to disconnect, especially...
By Simone Cannon de Bastardo Although the Galapagos Islands, Atacama and Torres del Paine National Parks are well known among travelers from North America, most people don’t know that there are more than 300 other beautiful national parks, protected sanctuaries and nature reserves in South America. Some are more accessible than others, some are quite...
By Tamara Hardingham-Gill When Ruth Harrison and Dan Phillips relocated from the US to Ecuador two years ago, their main goal was to enjoy a peaceful retirement. Just as the couple – who have chosen to use pseudonyms for this article – were settling into a new chapter in a more affordable country that offered...
By Rob Picheta “I don’t want to be a flat Earther,” David Weiss says, his voice weary as he reflects on his personal awakening. “Would you wake up in the morning and want everyone to think you’re an idiot?” But Weiss is a flat Earther. Ever since he tried and failed to find proof of...
By Rashmi J. Dalai Long before glitz and glamour came to accompany corporate packages and overseas retirements, Ernest Hemingway likened expats to addicts: “You’ve lost touch with the soil. You get precious. Fake foreign standards have ruined you. You drink yourself to death. You become obsessed with sex. You spend all your time talking, not...
By Brad Stulberg The other day, someone at my gym approached me and lamented that he could spend nearly every waking hour of his life executing the countless viral health and longevity recommendations popularized by internet influencers and podcast hosts, and he’d still feel that he is falling behind. He was alluding to a complicated and...
When we’re at our farm in Cañar Province, an hour-and-a-half drive north of Cuenca, I have my morning coffee beside the banana trees in the back yard. The neighbors can see me from the road and we exchange “Buenos Diases.” Most of them are on foot but a few ride horses or donkeys. Some lead...
By Caitlin Dow “You’d think we’d have a one-­sentence answer,” says Colleen Muñoz, assistant professor of health sciences at the University of Hartford. “But it’s much more complicated.” The usual advice to drink eight 8 oz. glasses of water a day—the 8-by-8 rule—seems daunting. But it was never about water alone. “The National Academy of...

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