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Author Topic: My new life in the Republic of Georgia  (Read 166831 times)

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Online Maxx2

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« Reply #975 on: September 20, 2019, 01:33:35 AM »

If you wanted to pay someone to build you a rocket to get you into space, for increased chances of success, would you choose a rocket scientist with 40 years experience to lead the project or a guy with little or no experience? What's your and the unemployed American's experience in the restaurant business? You'll need more than just a good cook to be successful.

Before choosing a business partner you know little about and dumping money in a business, cook up some food with your partner and have people try it out. Figure out if they'll pay for it and pay for it more than once.


He ran a Tex-Mex family business with his father in southwest Texas.


 I did some test marketing at the Expat event. So I sam, planning on doing more.


Also I was in business for 24 1/2 years. I know you really got to watch your costs and monthly overhead. And I know when to quickly get out out if it suddenly becomes a money pit. It gives me something to do and maybe I'll meet somebody.

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« Reply #976 on: September 20, 2019, 01:37:28 AM »
A week ago from last Sunday I attended an expat event in Tbilisi. Too bad they don't have any here in Batumi. Anyway I met three ladies. One was a Brazilian of Japanese decent. I would say early 50s. But she was there to meet a particular guy.


She just contacted me and wanted to know if we could meet at the event tomorrow. But I am not in Tbilisi.


She told me she had been very busy with work and that she found an apartment. I invited her to Batumi. Who knows?

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« Reply #977 on: September 20, 2019, 07:12:48 AM »

He ran a Tex-Mex family business with his father in southwest Texas.


 I did some test marketing at the Expat event. So I sam, planning on doing more.


Also I was in business for 24 1/2 years. I know you really got to watch your costs and monthly overhead. And I know when to quickly get out out if it suddenly becomes a money pit. It gives me something to do and maybe I'll meet somebody.

Maxx,

Straight up. IMO, you are in no condition (emotionally, financially, health-wise, etc) to embark in any type of biz, especially one that has a very high turnover ratio (failure rate), in a foreign land no less. There are reasons why things are cheaper where you are. All things in life are relative.

Think this over rightly.
~Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people~ Gator :P

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« Reply #978 on: September 20, 2019, 07:45:08 AM »
Maxx,

Straight up. IMO, you are in no condition (emotionally, financially, health-wise, etc) to embark in any type of biz, especially one that has a very high turnover ratio (failure rate), in a foreign land no less. There are reasons why things are cheaper where you are. All things in life are relative.

Think this over rightly.


Thank you GQ. I was in a bit of anxiety today at lunch thinking over some of the things you touched upon. I thought of them myself.


Today I had lunch with Michael the Tex-Mex guy. He told me about rents. He had checked. Apparently I can get get a small place for about $250-$300 a month. Last year in Tbilisi I spent about $3000 on kitchen tools. Things like a convection oven, a microwave, cutlery and deep friers. I have some savings and a budget for this of about $3-4K. If I spend my SS wisely I have enough left over every month for the rent. One thing I will not do is dip into my emergency fund to start my life up in the the US if I have to return.




Offline ML

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« Reply #979 on: September 20, 2019, 11:35:11 AM »

 One thing I will not do is dip into my emergency fund to start my life up in the the US if I have to return.

You will return to US eventually for your health care.
Winston Churchill.  “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.”

Offline BC

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« Reply #980 on: September 20, 2019, 02:02:18 PM »
Thank you GQ. I was in a bit of anxiety today at lunch thinking over some of the things you touched upon. I thought of them myself.

Take your well-calculated business plan and double the startup costs, calculate a third of the expected turnover and at least two years before being able to put anything at all in your pocket.  Employees always come first in line, always paid on time and fairly (in that order) they are your real capital.  Any biz in the service and hospitality sector will take 200% of your time. JMHE

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« Reply #981 on: September 20, 2019, 04:17:20 PM »
Last year in Tbilisi I spent about $3000 on kitchen tools. Things like a convection oven, a microwave, cutlery and deep friers. I have some savings and a budget for this of about $3-4K.


What about time? Do you have time? Are you ready to work 14 hour days, 7 days a week in keeping the restaurant open? What if the Tex Mex cook gets sick? Do you have others that can cook as well to take his place?

One big secret to McDonalds success is that they made it easy for dummies to make their food and it taste the same at any McDonalds you go to. If a customer has one bad meal, they will never come back and they will tell others never to go to that restaurant. Good food along with consistency is critical to be successful.

Not trying to be negative but being aware of anything that can take your business down will get you better prepared to be successful should you proceed.
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« Reply #982 on: September 20, 2019, 08:07:03 PM »
Take your well-calculated business plan and double the startup costs, calculate a third of the expected turnover and at least two years before being able to put anything at all in your pocket.  Employees always come first in line, always paid on time and fairly (in that order) they are your real capital.  Any biz in the service and hospitality sector will take 200% of your time. JMHE

Some studies years ago (I have no references now) showed that those who got degrees in business did not start new businesses at nearly the rate started by those who had no education or experience in business.

Reasoning was that when persons study about what it takes to start and run a business (as you would in business school) then they see the tremendous work and risk involved . . . and decide not to do it.  Instead they seek out more stability with already established firms for their career.

While those with no knowledge or understanding of the risks . . .

Note:  I realize that our man Maxx has operated a business . . . I am just talking in general here.
Winston Churchill.  “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.”

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« Reply #983 on: September 20, 2019, 11:48:20 PM »



Just a recipe for burrito and taco shells from Michael



Flour Tortillas
Made Approximately: 14 tortillas


1/2 - 3/4 kg flour
Oil - 3 tablespoons
Baking Powder - 2 teaspoons
Salt - 1 - 1. 1/2 teaspoon


Tortillas


Flour Tortillas
Ingredients
* 3 3/4 cups unbleached all purpose flour
* 3 tablespoons lard or shortening
* 1 to 1.5 teaspoons salt
* 1 1/3 cup warm water
* 2 teaspoons of Baking Powder - if lard is not available.


Instructions
* Add the salt to the flour and mix well.  Use your fingers to crumble the lard into the flour mixture.  Add 1 cup warm water and stir as much as you can with a spoon, then dump onto a flat surface and knead into a cohesive ball.  Let rest for at least 30 minutes.
* Tear into golfball sized chunks, rolling between your hands to shape them into smooth balls.
* Use a rolling pin to roll them out approximately 5-6 inches in diameter.
* Heat a comal/griddle to medium high temperature and add a tortilla.
* Cook each side for 45-60 seconds or until light brown spots form.
* As one tortilla cooks, roll out the next to expedite the process.
Notes
If the tortillas are springing back and not holding their shape as you roll them out, then let the dough (or dough balls) rest for a little longer.


It can take a few tries to get the heat of the stove right.  If you're quickly getting black spots then your temp is too high.  If it's taking too long to get brown spots then your temp is too low.


Corn Tortillas
Ingredients
* 2 cups masa harina
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1.5 cups warm water


Instructions
* Add 2 cups masa harina and 1/2 teaspoon salt to a mixing bowl.  Add 1 cup of the warm water and stir until the water is absorbed.  Add the rest of the water incrementally until the flour melds into a dough.  Use your hands to knead the dough into a cohesive ball.  If the dough is sticking to your hands, add a bit of masa harina to dry it out.
* Separate the dough into golf ball sized chunks, this will make tortillas approximately 4 inches across.
* Flatten the dough balls using a tortilla press or a flat bottomed pan. Be sure to line each side of the dough ball with plastic or ziploc pieces.
* Heat a skillet or comal to medium-high heat.  (Lately I use a tad over medium heat and this will have brown spots forming in about 60 seconds.)
* Add a tortilla and flip after 10 seconds. Then cook each side for 1-2 minutes or until light brown spots are forming.
* Continue cooking the rest of the tortillas.
* Serve immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge.
Notes
Sometimes it can take some fiddling to get the heat right on the stove. If the tortillas are getting singed black spots quickly, then dial down the heat. Ideally each side takes about 1-2 minutes before brown spots start forming.


If you don't want to do the 'quick flip' method, then you can simply cook each side of the tortilla for 1-2 minutes, or until brown spots are forming.

Online Maxx2

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« Reply #984 on: September 21, 2019, 12:33:59 AM »

Note:  I realize that our man Maxx has operated a business . . . I am just talking in general here.


I am hearing what everyone posted above loud and clear. It is morning here and I am drinking my coffee. That always picks up my mood.


The long hours... I remember those. When I ran my gold refining business (1990-2014) I slept on my couch in my office more often that in my bed at home. The people who I refined for wanted their purified gold back as soon as possible. I worked every other weekend and holidays.


People are potential problems. When I was in Tbilisi a week ago I stayed with a Georgian family. They are a 34 year old Georgian man and his 41 year old American wife (She was born in Michigan and grew up in Ohio and Florida. She got some experience in fast food both in the States and in Georgia). I'll call them 'Joe' and 'Kathy'  They live with his mother 'Katy'. 'Katy' stayed with her daughter when I was there but came to the apartment during the day to cook meals and clean. Anyway Joe is expecting Kathy will be my business partner. That was what put me in a bit anxiety yesterday when I was having lunch with Michael. I don't want to get into details about the family dynamic. Lets just say Joe wants Kathy to be home when he gets home at 7:30. They are newly weds married about a year and a half. He is very protective of her. Doesn't want her working alone and so on. So I see problems there.


AND the biggest potential problem, a partnership, could would come around and bite me. Of course I would take all the risk financially wise and would have three people (including the mother) trying to make decisions. So a partnership is definitely out.




 
« Last Edit: September 21, 2019, 12:36:08 AM by Maxx2 »

Online Maxx2

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« Reply #985 on: September 21, 2019, 01:40:02 AM »
You will return to US eventually for your health care.


I sure hope not. My biggest hope is to have a Georgian wife and family and die at home. They'll take my corpse and stick it into a refrigerated coffin. On the third day I will be lifted out and carried around in a circle 3 times (Clockwise) and taken to the family plot. There will be toasts of 'chacha' and speeches made of what a good guy I am/was. Maybe a fight will break out as often does at funerals and weddings? Then exactly a year later there will be another food and drink celebration at the graveyard. That is when my spirit goes off to heaven according to Georgian belief.  I get to hang around earth for a year but I am not sure what I will do. Maybe I'll get to haunt some of you?
« Last Edit: September 21, 2019, 03:46:12 AM by Maxx2 »

Online Maxx2

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« Reply #986 on: September 21, 2019, 03:18:27 AM »
Does anyone know how to post photos from Flickr? Used to be able to do it. But now nothing comes up. Perhaps it is the board? I have some photos in my account of kitchen tools I would like to show.

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Online Maxx2

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« Reply #989 on: September 21, 2019, 03:41:38 AM »

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« Reply #990 on: September 21, 2019, 03:43:14 AM »

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« Reply #991 on: September 21, 2019, 03:44:56 AM »



And I got a real big stainless steel stock pot. I bought all of this last year. My mom taught me to cook when I was seven years old.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2019, 03:48:59 AM by Maxx2 »

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« Reply #992 on: September 21, 2019, 10:15:43 AM »
Maxx,

Straight up. IMO, you are in no condition (emotionally, financially, health-wise, etc) to embark in any type of biz, especially one that has a very high turnover ratio (failure rate), in a foreign land no less. There are reasons why things are cheaper where you are. All things in life are relative.

Think this over rightly.

While I'm sure you are correct in your assessment of Maxx, I'd say he should get his business off the ground if that is what he wants to do.  He may fail of his own accord, but it is simply something he needs to do.  And what difference does it make if he does fail?  He isn't getting younger and the likelihood of him pulling him self out of his current mind set isn't all that good.   Perhaps a line of work he apparently loves will pull him together.  It is better than stagnating with a bottle of vodka in the evening.

Fathertime! 
I just happened to be browsing about the internet....

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« Reply #993 on: September 21, 2019, 10:16:44 AM »

Put that stuff to use immediately!

Fathertime!
I just happened to be browsing about the internet....

Online Maxx2

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« Reply #994 on: September 21, 2019, 10:26:41 AM »
Put that stuff to use immediately!

Fathertime!


Have been. I hope to surprise everyone.


Frankly I am not too concerned about success or failure. To me it is just a game. Something to do. It is said at the end of life what we regret the most is not what we did but what we didn't do.

Offline ML

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« Reply #995 on: September 21, 2019, 10:41:17 AM »

I'll call them 'Joe' and 'Kathy'  They live with his mother 'Katy'. 'Katy' stayed with her daughter when I was there but came to the apartment during the day to cook meals and clean.

Maxx, I am lost here.

Joe and Kathy live with Katy who is Joe's mother.
Katy stayed with her daughter when Max was there.

- - - - - - -   

Why Katy moved away from Joe and Kathy just because you were there ?

Katy came to your apartment to cook and clean, or came to apt where Joe and Kathy are living?
Winston Churchill.  “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.”

Online Maxx2

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« Reply #996 on: September 21, 2019, 11:27:26 AM »
Maxx, I am lost here.

Joe and Kathy live with Katy who is Joe's mother.
Katy stayed with her daughter when Max was there.

- - - - - - -   

Why Katy moved away from Joe and Kathy just because you were there ?



I slept in Katy's bed for my 9 days I was there. I saved about $300 in hotel fees. It was Joe and Kathy's idea. It was good in that I got to know them better.


And the mother went to a holy woman who put a blessing on us. I was told she has special powers or a good connection with God.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2019, 11:47:54 AM by Maxx2 »

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« Reply #998 on: September 21, 2019, 08:44:03 PM »
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/retirement-crisis-economic-refugees-why-more-americans-are-retiring-abroad/

Maxx, the journalist and CBS News is messing with their readers brains. Since Trump is President, they need to report bad news such as people are financially hurting and need to flee America.

"The number of retirees who draw Social Security outside the U.S. jumped 40%, to more than 413,000, between 2007 to 2017, according to the Social Security Administration. "

Quote in bold from your article wants us to believe in 10 years the number of retirees have fled America jumped by a whopping 40%. Why did they choose to begin the math in 2007? That is because it's the year right before the baby boomers retire in large numbers.

Look at the chart in the link below. in 2007 about 6000 Americans retired everyday. In 2017, about 10,000 Americans retired everyday. So there's your 40% jump and while 40% more retirees fled America, 40% more retirees stayed in America. There's really no change to retirees behavior. The only change from 2007-2017 is there are more people retiring. The article is to plant a seed in the readers head that people are financially suffering in Trump's so called great economy. Don't drink the kool aid.

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/americans-retiring-increasing-pace-145837368.html
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« Reply #999 on: September 22, 2019, 01:27:55 AM »
The article is to plant a seed in the readers head that people are financially suffering in Trump's so called great economy. Don't drink the kool aid.


I try to stay out of political discussions and choosing sides here on this board. I posted the article that was linked by the DRUDGEREPORT to show why people choose a life abroad. Many of the points made in the article are points I have been making here.


The country noted in the article, Ecuador is one I have investigated to expat to. The pluses of living there have negatives I don't find in Georgia. And Georgia has positives that American expats in Ecuador could only dream about. As example the ease of starting a business. Many Americans etc have given up trying to get a business license in Ecuador. Inspectors jack them around. The police expect "cola money" A few bucks to supposedly buy a Coca Cola. The government in that corrupt socialist country throws down every road block they can think of. They make it hard to register a car or open a bank account. It takes weeks to do so. Here in Georgia those things can be accomplished in a few hours. And Georgia has much, much less crime. In Ecuador if you don't have a guard watching your property you can expect everything stolen right to the slab of concrete your house used to sit on. And you got to watch the taxis also. Sometimes they drive you to a corner where 3 guys get in and escort you to a ATM.


I'll just say this politically. 8 years of the past 12 years were Obama years. Those were the hardest years economically speaking of my life.

 

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