Sunday, April 18, 2010

OK, maybe not every day

Well, you all knew it (both of you). 
So without further ado, here's a rundown of some happenings of the week.

I went with Vincent and friend (Bruno Origgioni, Italian enough for ya?) to a concert of one of our favorite bands. Cuarteto de Nos are from right here in Montevideo. The drummer must live near us as we see him on the street quite often. The show was awesome even though their longtime leader has just left the band. His brother stepped in as front man and with the addition of a new guitar and a new keyboard player they sounded great as ever. Vincent and the group of friends he met up with and I were the rowdiest in our area. It was loads of fun and we walked there and back. A great open air venue , Teatro de Verano, right on the Rambla.

We also had an asado at a friends. Nice and easy, great food and company, a typical Uruguayan afternoon. The kids are a little shy and didn't interact much.


Today it's returning to rain again and there's a chill in the air. Ugh.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Square Feet vs. Sq. Meters: Round One

Ding. There's square feet in U$D, (what you are likely used to), sq. ft. in Pesos Uruguayos (frankly, not much call for that), sq. meters in Dollars and sq. meters in Pesos. Those last two being used here the most.
The major elements of property ownership; maintenance, renovation, and resale are populated with costs that vacillate between pesos and dollars constantly. Then there's the dollar/peso valuation, based on the purchase or sale cost of United States Currency here. Gotta keep an eye on that. A house you bought for $90,000 while the pesos was 24 to the dollar and sold when the pesos dropped to 19,  is then worth only about U$70,000.  Not so good.
All the converting can drive you nuts.
The price for square meter can vary wildly by street, let alone neighborhood. Throw in everybody's personal bias and you've got a mess. Anyone, who says they know is selling something and that can throw it off further.
We are thick in a sale of prime Parque Rodo real estate (U$1,200 sq. mt.), looking at a store to buy and building beach cabins (U$45 sq. mt.).

Check some prices for yourself at
I lost the original of this post once today. More tomorrow.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Don't know nothin'

Whatever you think you know, it usually turns out you don't. The cruel irony is that we acquire knowledge and ideally wisdom then only to relax our natural curiosity and skepticism.  Oh you think you don't, but you probably do.
Do you listen to people and think "yeah, I know" or even worse, wait for your turn to talk and then say "yeah, that's just like blah-bity-bloo and so and such thing", or "I used to know a", or "isn't that something like the ...."?
Do you follow this? It's what we do.
We respond with something pertaining to the subject matter, and delude ourselves into believing it's polite and engaging to add something relevant to the conversation. It's really so we can show that we've learned something too. We're proud of it and in many cases have good reason to be.
It takes years, patience and some degree of suffering to 'know' anything. Alas, we must share air time with folks spewing opinions, people with a blatant contempt for facts, the insecure, narcissistic and often dull. It's maddening.
So just assume the next time you open your mouth you'll say what doesn't need to be said and wouldn't matter one way or the other anyway.
Look here for tips on frugal living in Montevideo. That's if you live here. There will be no advice for those people "thinking about moving here". No posts on the cost of living here,  for your comparison. 
There is much to respond to in regard to some of the ExPat sites out there. I want people to know the truth, knowing how subjective that is, and what I read sometimes is far from it. Anyone who is skeptical is invited to discuss it in depth with me. You will read about how we live with in our budget and why I think anyone can.
I will do my best to keep this up. The challenges are many, rewards few. 
Let's see if anyone is interested.
All in all, a biased, unapologetic and hopefully lively discussion on living in Uruguay.