I love our new house in Costa Rica.
We haven’t lived here long enough to make it home yet, but it won’t be long.
So far, here’s what I love about our new house in Costa Rica:
- The countryside, living in the country, living where the farmers live. I never thought I would find myself living on a gravel road, let alone in Costa Rica. In Allen, Michigan, there were gravel roads all around us, but we lived on U.S. 12, formerly a major highway between Detroit and Chicago. It still had plenty of truck traffic. Visitors would remark on how difficult it was to sleep with the windows open (no a/c) because of the truck noise. We lived at the edge of town so the trucks were either upshifting or downshifting as they passed our house. At our new house in Guacimos de Atenas there are no trucks. Only an occassional bus, car or motorbike and then only until dark.
- Bruce and Frances Jones. Everybody who moves to a new country should have a Bruce and Frances! They would be the first to tell you they don’t know everything about Costa Rica, and they don’t pretend too. But they sure know a lot. They have lived here long enough to know people and places. They are our mentors. Could we have done it without them? Yes, but it would have been so much more difficult. We can never repay them, but we will try. At least, we will try to “pay it forward.” There have been others, but Bruce and Frances were the first gringos we met.
- Sunrises. I haven’t seen a sunrise (other than on vacation) for years. It was a struggle to roll out of bed at 7 a.m. to head to work. Now I am awake at 5:30 and watch the sunrise out our bedroom window at 6:00 am and I’m ready for a new day.
- The animals. Aside from the cows and horses and chickens, I love the parrots in the tree beside the pool, the monkeys in the trees just down the hill, the huge variety of birds and their calls, the butterflies.
- People. So far, we have yet to run into anyone that wants to make our life more difficult. Everyone wants to make our life more pleasant. From the grocery clerk, the hardware store guy, the butcher…
- The house itself. It is small, very small. Half what we had before. But since we only truly lived in half of that house, our house in Costa Rica will be fine – until we expand. 🙂 – which will be very soon. We will be adding a master bedroom, changing the guest room into a media room, carport with bodega, and of course, dog fence. A general contractor came within hours of me leaving him voice mail and will have the estimate “soon.”
I have adapted the “tranquilo” life easily. It doesn’t HAVE to get done right now, it will be OK if it gets done later. Internet for example, for a guy that has lived and died by the web, I’m OK that our innerwebs is unavailable here at home. If we need it bad enough, I can drive into town “sometime” and access somebody’s wireless.
Enough sappiness. Here’s the crapola about living in Costa Rica – so far.
- No friggin’ internet. OK, I gotta take some responsibility – let’s say somewhere in the range of 100% responsibility. When we looked at the house, the guy was using a computer on the internet. Access had been so ubiquitous via wireless or cable that I didn’t give it a thought. Turns out he was using a WiMAX card, which is 512 bps (or something) which is OK for email, but not much else. So we are looking for suitable alternatives.
- Outrageous car prices. We ended up paying $11,500 USD cash for a 1999 Mitsubishi Montero Sport XL Limited. There are very high duties on cars (to offset low property taxes) so every car is ridiculously priced (compared to the U.S.)
Aside: I’m trying to avoid comparing prices to the U.S. because we. don’t. live. there. anymore. 🙂
- Paperwork. Jeez they love the paperwork in Costa Rica. We paid for the car yesterday (Wednesday), but can’t take delivery until Monday at the earliest because of all the paperwork. After 2 hours with a lawyer to do the deal, the used car guy will call us when we can pick up the car.
I love my new house in Costa Rica. Is there crapola? Claro! There is crapola where-ever you live.
But, it won’t be long before our new house in Costa Rica will be our new HOME.
I love my new house in Costa Rica.