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Aracari critiques my work!

A colorful aracari critiques my work!

(Mindo Ecuador)

Let’s start with a few birds that highlight every day I am on Jim and Julie’s property!

Quetzal often laughs over my shoulder!

Quetzals often laugh over my shoulder!

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A male and female quetzal perch on a tall tree on a hill near the house.

About a 30-minute drive from Mindo is the hub of “Los Bancos.” I was there last week to pay the car tag fee for Jim and Julie. After an hour’s wait in line at the bank, I was told, “The system is down,” and was dismissed.

I stood there with mouth agape, pondered my choices, and quickly decided, “I’ll go to the Mirador Restaurant and not let this bother me!”

Patricio, the owner of the Mirador Restaurant and Cabanas, has great hospitality skills and always has time for his guests. Not only is the food exceptional, there are stunning views to the valley below as well as an ever-changing cast of birds that visit the feeders near the tables.

(Aracaris) These stars often make an appearance at the Mirador Restaurant.

(Aracaris) These stars often make an appearance at the Mirador Restaurant.

Patricio’s nephew greeted me and said, “I saw you in the bank. That was a long line!” He could not help with suggestions for paying the tag fee, but Patricio came along and assured me that I had all month to pay it.
“I’ll try again in another week,” I smiled, then sat at a table near one of the bird feeding stations.

Flamed-faced tanager

Flamed-faced tanager

How do you like those trousers?

How do you like those trousers?

Coordinating attire!

Coordinating attire!

Food Fight!

Food Fight!

I once asked Patricio where one could buy hummingbird feeders. They are expensive and scarce in this country! He smiled and replied, “We use chicken feeders – what they use to water the baby chickens…”

Again my jaw dropped while my eyes opened! Eureka – chicken feeders!

Mirador Restaurant - Los Bancos,Ecuador

Mirador Restaurant – Los Bancos,Ecuador

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Bananaquits enjoy this watering hole, too!

Bananaquits enjoy this watering hole, too!

After enjoying a shrimp crepe (delicious!) and cafe con leche and a small jar of fresh ‘arasha’ juice, I was recharged. Before leaving town, I spotted two policemen in a patrol car. I politely showed them the paperwork, told them what happened, and they also said that I had all month to pay the tag renewal fee. Whew.

Meanwhile, back at the property, I’ve enjoyed experimenting with the inexpensive feeders.  Here are my last two attempts to make them more attractive.    These two are waiting a protective finish, so they can be easily washed.  What do you think – do you like the way they turned out?

Upgrade from chicken feeders to hummingbird feeders!

Upgrade from chicken feeders to hummingbird feeders!

Yes, there's another ongoing project (table) as well. Hopefully next week it will be finished!

Yes, there’s another ongoing project (table) as well. Hopefully next week it will be finished!

A tour group will be reaching Mindo any minute now, so it’s time to switch hats and share a few stories about my life in Ecuador!

Z

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