Baby Boomer

Posts to Come

We have a few projects in the works and wanted to let everyone know what will be coming in the next week, in no particular order:          X  Expat Travel Technology Series, Part 2: "How do I get my mail?"  Brad's weekly update on our tech tools.

        X  Setting up Daycare:  Two places that we've looked at, including our thoughts and prices for 5 half days per week in the post "Daycare Options"

        X  "Furnished or Unfurnished?" and why we chose what we did for our new home.

        X  Creepy Crawlies: Post took the form of “It’s The Little Differences"  to discuss lots of small things that are different in UY from those which we are accustomed.

  1. Firing up the Parilla: Our first attempt at an pseudo-Uruguayan Asado (pseudo because it was vegetariano)
  2. Photo/Video gallery via SmugMug

If there is anything you absolutely cannot wait to see, please send us a note.  We can pull some strings.

We will be updating this list to link to the topics after they are posted. 

Expat Travel Technology: An Introduction

Get Your own Toll Free Number

There are many challenges in moving abroad.  One is technology.  What do I bring? How will it work?  Will it work at all?  Do they sell that in Timbuktu? If yes, do I have to give up my first born to get it?  The answer to that last one is...maybe.  Technology abroad--for the most part--is expensive.  

expat-technology-helpTech--as it's always been--is a blessing and a curse.  There are an incredible number of options, but at least we have options.  I give Lisa's mom a hard time for coming over on "the boat" in the '50s from the Netherlands.  They actually flew with several stops, including one in Greenland. Either way, it was no picnic.  So even if my computer crashes or my VOIP goes down...I did not have to come over on "the boat".  Again, options. We can communicate locally and internationally even if that means I have to walk down to the nearest restaurant or McDonalds with WiFi (wireless internet) if my Internet crashes.  WiFi is even available in the parks here in UY and some buses  I'll have to try that albeit discreetly --if that's possible-- as I don't want my computer to be relieved from my possession.  You can even sit down at the McCafe and have a "meeting" across the table via webcam.  So you can continue those Starbucks-style meetings if you like.

One challenge involves staying in contact with your "home" country.  For some this may not be an issue if they are severing ties to the homeland.  In our case, we need to work with clients in the United States to allow us to maintain our expat lifestlye and keep up with family.  Thankfully it has never been easier to maintain this connection as an expat.   Even three or four years ago this transition was far harder than it is today.

There are many issues to consider: receiving postal /snail mail, personal and business phone, computer hardware, backing up your computer, power supplies, what technology to bring, watching your favorite TV shows from home, hiring developers or independant contractors. Fortunately there is a tool, a download, a website, or a physically piece of equipment that can address all of these issues. Even if you're a baby boomer retiring abroad and technology is not your best friend, there are still many tools that are worth the small investment.  I will provide information on several of the travel technology tools that I use everyday in Montevideo... many of these we were using well before the move because they're just great services. The technology we use untethers us from a physical location and thereby is perfect for a traveler on the go or an expat...well...that's flat out gone. 

I'm sensitive to you Mac folks...I have not yet joined your ranks, but most of these tools play nice with Mac...probably better.  

I will also talk about some of the challenges of limiting the interuption to my business while navigating the set up process in a foreign country.  There have been pleasant surprises and of course headaches.  I will share it all here.  I may not be able to wait until Monday...there's so much good stuff!!!

A Day with Friends

Today turned out to be a pretty terrific Sunday. It actually started on Saturday evening when we were invited to a Sunday morning excursion to the park by someone we met here last year (all names are removed- try to keep up!). With his wife away for the weekend and two young daughters at home, a crisp fall morning at the park would do everyone good. Brad, Geneva and I had a nice breakfast at the hotel (although after 3 weeks here, it is getting a little boring) and then received the call at about 10:30 AM that they were headed to the park shortly. We packed and walked the 10 blocks to Parque Biarritz where there is a large play area. On such a great morning, it was packed. After about a half an hour there with a very clingy Geneva, it was time to move on. Before we left though, there was an invitation to stop by their house later this afternoon to socialize some more. Thanks, we just may do that!

Out next appointment at noon was meeting some visitors from MN. We had met a couple before leaving MN who are planning to purchase retirement property in Uruguay withing the next couple of years. It is a funny, random connection. The husband works with my cousin's husband and really, how many people from MN are planning on moving to Uruguay? Well, at least a few of us and we were introduced. We met once for lunch in MN and have corresponded back and forth to plan a meeting while they are visiting Uruguay. Today was the day and it was great to see some familiar faces from home! I think we were a welcome sight for them as well because their first 24 hours in UY had been rough with missing luggage, a noisy hotel room leading to a sleepless night, etc. We talked and commiserated at Old Maz restaurant for a while before we were joined by many others there for the 1:00 Expat meetup.

Sunday at 1 PM there is a meeting of english speaking Expats at the Old Maz restaurant in the Pocitos neighborhood of Montevideo . They've been meeting every Sunday for three years, rain or shine, holiday or not (we were there on Easter Sunday). There are tourists, people investigating Uruguay for a future move, and those of us who are committed and are going to be here for a while. There is no formal meeting, it is just a group that gathers to socialize, share experiences and learn from each other. Today was absolutely packed! We stayed for a little while but with a baby that was growing more and more tired, we left at about 1:45.

Skip ahead through a late lunch, drama with a sleepy Geneva bumping her head and a long nap for all of us.... and 5 PM rolls around. We head out to see if the invitation to come by still sticks. It does and we apparently have perfect timing. Two little girls sit at the table, the older one who is 5 and is totally bilingual is doing homework (spelling and cursive) an in both languages. Let me say that again... 5 year old.... homework... both languages. I was stunned at the skill of this intelligent little girl. Very fun to watch. We all played and were invited for an impromptu meal. Wine was brought out, we talked, the girls played, the meal was amazing. It was really great to have a home cooked meal. It feels like it's been so long! There are only a few people we know who can deliver such an incredible, non-scripted dinner and evening of entertainment. It was really a nice time. While we were there, the Mom of the family came home and joined us for dinner, and we made our exit not too long after, as all the girls needed to get to bed.

A long, busy, very fun day with friends. What a good day.

NOTE: I'm learning that I am really bad at planning photos for my posts. Sorry for the wordiness and nothing to look at. I can't believe that a visual person like myself can't seem to remember the to grab the camera. If I could only hook you up to my brain...no wait. Dangerous!