Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Gala Event!

Occasionally, we get dressed up in Cuenca, but not that often! I brought one little black dress and a pair of fancy heels and after two years, I finally got to use them!

Last Thursday (June 7th), we celebrated the 20th Anniversary of CEDEI (the language school where we teach). The invitation read "formal attire only," so I let out a "yippee" and ran to the closet and made sure my dress still existed. Sure enough, I even brought a sparkly purse to go with it. We were set, except Mark left his suit at his father's funeral. But one of our friends came to the rescue with a navy suit, tie and off-white shirt. We were set!

The event was held at the Quinta Lucrecia and exceeded our expectations. As soon as we walked through the doors, we were greeted and escorted to our seats and our coats were checked. I can't even remember the last time that happened. At every turn there was another bouquet of roses and more sparkles. I'm so thankful I made an appointment and Lucy's for hair, makeup and nails because everyone was dressed to the nines. It was a who's who of Cuenca, even the Consular General of Guayaquil was there along with the reigning queen of Cuenca with her red velvet sash.

Before dinner there were introductions and a few speeches and then a toast to 20 years of CEDEI. I didn't realize it, but a lot of colleges from the States have exchange programs with CEDEI, including Salisbury University in Maryland, St. Ambrose University and Illinois College.

One thing to remember if you're invited to one of these events is to be sure and bring your appetite. The appetizer looked more like the main course to me, so I forgot to pace myself. By the time the main course arrived, I was already full. Thankfully, our table had a lot of twenty-something teachers who came with an appetite, so we kept passing the food.


Main Course: Filet Mignon and Chicken

Dessert: Raspberry Meringue

The evening didn't end with dinner (things just started warming up around 10:00 p.m.). We all went into the courtyard where there was a castillo (fireworks tower) and globos (hot air balloons), each representing a different department or college associated with CEDEI. While the band played, canelazo (specialty drink in Ecuador) was passed, along with a tray of miniature desserts.

To work off all the calories we consumed, the band played louder and the dancing began. I kicked off my heels and joined the fun. The party was actually just starting when we left and that was a little after midnight (which is turning in early for Cuencano parties). There were several taxis waiting out front of Quinta Lucrecia, so we had no trouble getting home. Mark had to teach the next day, so it was "early" to bed for him.


I told Mark, "Don't put your suit away yet, we've got Father's Day coming up!" I made reservations at Mansion Alcazar's Father's Day Eve Wine Tasting for Expats (Saturday June 16th). There's going to be wine, hors d'oeuvres and music by Robert Brinkmoeller and a special presentation by the former host of "Fashion Emergency." I made another hair appointment at Lucy's and who knows...the little black dress might make another debut.

If you're coming to Cuenca, you might want to pack a few nice clothes for special occasions -- like a gala!

Until next time...hasta luego!

A special thank you to my team at Lucy's for making me feel pretty!



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