It seems like there is love at “first sight,” tell me about it.
L: I was the president of a small community bank in Alamogordo, New Mexico and
N: I worked for a local Red Cross Chapter.
L: We didn’t know each other but drove together to a Red Cross Board of Director’s training in Albuquerque.
N: With the drive and all that time together in the car talking, after 2½ days we knew we should be married.
After your 3-week honeymoon in Europe, what did life look like?
L: We got married in 1981 and lived in Alamogordo, NM for several years.
N: We then moved to Visalia, California for four years and then back to Las Cruces, NM.
L: I retired as a community bank CEO in 1995 and then started a small company to help small businesses become financially stable.
N: Loren was quite involved with Rotary International. He was President of the Rotary Club of Las Cruces (Rio Grande) in 1995-96. He worked as both the board secretary of the club from 1998-2015 and as the Executive Secretary of Rotary District 5520 from 2004–2015. He was named the District 5520 Rotarian of the Year for 2005-2006.
You moved down in March of 2015, were there any other countries on your list?
L: Yes, Panama, Costa Rica and France.
N: We visited the Galapagos and Peru for 3 weeks in 2004 and liked Ecuador. I think that is when we started thinking about living overseas.
L: We visited Ecuador again in October 2014.
N: Then went home and began making arrangements to move.
What made you decide on Ecuador?
L: The economy is based on the dollar and the less expensive lifestyle would allow us to save for travel. We wanted to travel before our age caught up with us.
N: And medical services are important to us.
L: We also were looking for a vibrant expat community.
N: And we wanted the ability to have an active social life.
What are your favorite things about Cuenca?
L: I love all the rivers and the wonderful views.
N: I love the temperature and the people.
What are your least favorite things about Cuenca?
L: I would have to say the bus exhaust.
N: I like the sunshine so it would have to be the cloudy days.
Now that you are here, do you have any special activities you enjoy?
L: As I mentioned, I had been very involved with Rotary International for almost 40 years, and since moving to Cuenca I have been working hard with a core group of people to start an English-speaking chapter of Rotary International here. It would be called the Rotary Club of Cuenca – International. I am still an honorary member of the Rotary Club of Las Cruces (Rio Grande). I still offer support to my club secretary and District 5520 executive secretary who both took my place when we moved.
N: Rotary has been a big part of our lives for many years so we both are involved with trying to start the new chapter here in Cuenca.
What does Date Night look like for you?
L: We don’t go out much so we don’t have date nights, but we love having friends over.
N: Well, sometimes we go out. We enjoy going to Joe’s Secret Garden with friends and meeting and making new friends. Some of our best new friends in Cuenca were made at Joe’s over a delicious dinner.
L: Nancy is such great cook we would rather stay in with friends. And nothing beats her chocolate chip cookies and apple pies for desert.
N: Yes, I do love cooking and having people over.