Keeping You In Stitches

Costa Rican Birthday – It’s today!

Posted on: June 21, 2012

One year ago today, I arrived in Costa Rica to live!  Can hardly believe that it’s been a year! Time flies, especially when you are learning to adapt to a new country and culture.

Seems like a lot has been accomplished this past year….the first biggie was the arrival of the sea container with all our worldly possessions.

A friend, Pat, was kind enough to go with us to get our Costa Rican drivers licenses – needed a physical and blood typed in order to accomplish this.

Around this time we received notification of our expediante – meaning we were in the system to become residents of Costa Rica! Woo Hoo!  Thanks to Monica, our residency attorney!

Construction began on the bodega and getting the fence around the yard; after those projects were completed, the addition to the house began.

Then October hit!  The dreaded October that we hope to not experience this year.  Over 35 inches of rain, on our little patch of the mountain!  And yes, during the construction….with the dogs and mud, and having no reliable internet….let’s just say things were a little testy!  At one point I informed Mark that if we didn’t have decent internet by Nov. 1, 2011, I was headed back to the states and when we had it, he could call and I would come back!

Alas!  It didn’t happen! The going back to the states, I mean.  CR WIFI came through – good internet, and the most delicious thing of all, I didn’t have to go into town to make phone calls!

Had two different sets of company during this time…felt badly that they experienced Costa Rica during this epic rain month!  Amy has since returned and been able to experience the beauty of the weather and scenery. When she and Todd were here last October, I don’t think we ever were out of the clouds. Now to get Todd back to see the beauty!

And Bill and Sandra were in Costa Rica for a nephew’s wedding and then spent a few days with us.  Sandra and I love putting puzzles together….I bought a puzzle table to bring down because I knew I didn’t have the “counter/table space” to work a puzzle….by the time the puzzle was done, the pieces were twice their size because of the humidity! LOL  Anyway, we hope they return to see Costa Rica in it’s finest.

Had a little Christmas party, which will be an annual event.  Yes, I put up 2 Christmas trees, one in the living room and one on the rancho – who cares if they were about 6 feet apart. It was festive!

We attended many parades in town, the Christmas parade being the highlight!  Talk about a “drum parade” – I thought opening a “drum store” would be a perfect business…all those broken drum sticks, etc.

In February we received notice that it was time to head to San Jose and receive our Cedula’s – our cards showing that we were now residents of Costa Rica! We DID NOT give up our U.S. residency.  This just means we do not have to make border runs every 90 days!  Because of Monika’s efficiency, as soon as you receive your expediante papers, you do not have to make the border runs….we didn’t have to do this, even one time! WOO HOO!  And yes, we will be voting in the presidential election!

We’ve met many new friends from all over the world since living here.  Quite a few of us are here because we couldn’t afford to retire in the U.S.  So far we are more than pleased with the health care – and the weather, it’s great!  Still hard to believe we are so far south and need no A/C….we do use fans. Having windows open is a novelty for us and we love it!

Do we miss “the comforts” of the U.S., yep!  But you know what, learning to get along with a little less isn’t bad – except when I’m in a creating mood and not sure of where to shop to get the “stuff” I need!  Then I do tend to throw a hissy fit!

Public transportation (buses) is efficient here and I’ve been learning to do this, thanks to a ladies group I belong to…now to get Mark on one.

Next year the goal is to be able to speak Spanish!  I know words and can usually get what I need across to whomever I am speaking to….I have trouble putting sentences together.

I’ve figured  that we’ve had “company” for 6 weeks so far since last October!  We’re not that far from the airport so it’s not a big deal to pick up people.  Our house is small but when most of your living is done outside….well, it’s a great big outdoor living space!

I never in a million years thought I would enjoy living in the country – on a gravel road!  But when we head into town and hear all the noise, horns honking, car alarms going off, music blaring….we are always happy to return to our little piece of the mountain and the quiet – we have adapted to hearing  the birds singing, the cows mooing and the howler monkeys howling – so much more peaceful…except for our barking dogs!

Pura Vida …..


2 Responses to "Costa Rican Birthday – It’s today!"

My husband and I are checking into retiring to Costa Rica and have read it’s expensive to retire there compared to the US. What is your experience? What part of Costa Rica are you living in. Sounds very nice. Oh yea, How are the bugs?

We live in a small town; are living quite nicely on Social Security and even have money left over at month’s end! If you want to live near the beach, yes, it will be expensive. Plus, you will absolutely need A/C. We live in the Central Valley near Atenas; have no A/C or heat. We do use ceiling fans and floor fans and are getting along just fine. If it’s too hot, we don’t do anything but sit by/in the pool. Everyone is different, Costa Rica is not for everyone. It works for us – we love it!

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