SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise by Gary Davis – plumitapacifica.com

2 Sep

This is the continuation of a series of posts on my blog to promote the e-book SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA – which is a Guide to… the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise… This is a guide book that will give you the kind of insider’s knowledge that you might wish you had before you made your decision to move or not move to Costa Rica.

Every blog entry will start with the appendix because that way when you read whatever else I have posted it will 1. make sense (I hope) and 2. give you a point of reference in case you realize you need to read something that is “archived”.  Because if you read every blog I enter you will have eventually read the whole e-book and won’t need to order it for $2.99 from Amazon or B&N.  All you’ll be missing are the photos that show what you might expect if you choose to undertake the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise.

As I said, I will start each blog with the appendix so that the reader can reference important elements of the book to archived blogs.  The page numbers shown are the actual page they appear on in the book. Here is the Appendix – and these are all the nuggets and their corresponding page numbers:

Definition of “nugget” – 3, Doors & Windows – 7, Manufacturing – 11, Real Estate – 11, Shipping – 12,Maps, – 15, Corporations – 20, Traffic Cops – 23, Know basic Spanish – 30, Panama – 33, Roof Line – 42, Plumita Pacifica Web Address – 65, Getting the Best a Tico has to Offer – 84, Power Surges – 86, Liberia Airport – 88, Attitude – 104, Cellular Phones – 117, Newspapers – 18, Your Embassy – 137, Buying & Selling Cars – 154, Drive Slowly – 161, Arriving at the Airport – 168, Wages & Prices – 170, Undertows – 226, Life Ring – 230, Avoiding Customs Confiscations – 234, Driving Rules – 236, Walking in the City – 249, Purchasing Anything – 258, Buying Fresh Produce – 263, Bus Tickets – 272, to “Bribe” or not to “Bribe” – 313, Traffic ticket Prices – 315, Exiting the Country – 337

And just in case you’re interested… here’s the table of contents:

Introduction and Preliminary Comments – 3, My First Trip -15, Lost in Guanacaste – Playa Coyote – 20, Trust with a Child – 26, Lost in Panama – 29, Attorneys – 35, My Contractor – 38, My Security Guard – 61, My Toldo – 67, Getting a Land Line Phone and Internet – 76, A Cellular Phone – 115, A Country Doctor – 124, A Lesson Well Learned – 130, A Little Green Frog – 138, A Little Brown Frog and a Bat – 146, A “Murphy’s Law” Day – 153, Driving in the Rainy Season – 161, Drunk Drivers – 174, Fiesta del Toros – 185, Getting a Drivers License – 195, INS and a Minor Accident – 203, Lifeguards – 224, Passing through Customs – 232, Rules of the Road for Tico Driving – 236, San Jose – 241, Shopping and Making Tamales – 250, Taking the Bus – 272, Turtles in My Front Yard – 281, Untitled – 287, When it Rains it Pours (sometimes) – 294, She Found My Lot – 307, My First Traffic Ticket – 312, Ticket # 2 – 316, My Radar Detector – 318, Ticket # 3 (after a slow speed chase) – 324, A Christmas Parade – 338, Sex (the truth about ticos) – 343, Photo Album – 347, Appendix – 374

chapter 9 continued

Speaking of security guards, here’s the clincher.  At the beginning of the month I went to the ICE payment office to pay my cell phone bill.  It seemed logical, since I now had a functioning land line, to pay both bills at the same time.  Even though I had only had the land line (functioning) for a couple weeks I figured there would be basic service charges due and I wouldn’t mind paying a small amount in advance.  But the girl behind the glass said no.  I could pay it the 22nd of the month at the earliest.  Well, it turns out I’ll be passing through Santa Cruz that day on my way to the airport to go the U.S.   I’ll just pay both then so I can get the payment synchronized.  Oh, the best laid plans…  I went in on the 22nd… she said no. 

I could pay the land line but the cell phone had not been a month yet since the last time I paid it.  And here’s where the security guard comes in.  When I walked into the office she had, literally, piles of money spread out on her desk.  There were stacks of bills with a paper band around them and loose bills.  She was counting.  She continued counting during my transaction, which took a few minutes because I thought I just didn’t understand her. 

I couldn’t believe I couldn’t pay both phone bills so I kept making her repeat herself until I finally understood that yep, I have to drive down that rough dirt road twice a month to pay separately.  In the meantime a line was forming behind me of frustrated people who looked like they were tired of being held up by stupid gringos. 

And she just kept counting these stacks of money.  And there was no security guard.  He was down the street in the office that had no money. 

Government mentality at its best.

SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise by Gary Davis – plumitapacifica.com

1 Sep

This is the continuation of a series of posts on my blog to promote the e-book SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA – which is a Guide to… the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise… This is a guide book that will give you the kind of insider’s knowledge that you might wish you had before you made your decision to move or not move to Costa Rica.

Every blog entry will start with the appendix because that way when you read whatever else I have posted it will 1. make sense (I hope) and 2. give you a point of reference in case you realize you need to read something that is “archived”.  Because if you read every blog I enter you will have eventually read the whole e-book and won’t need to order it for $2.99 from Amazon or B&N.  All you’ll be missing are the photos that show what you might expect if you choose to undertake the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise.

As I said, I will start each blog with the appendix so that the reader can reference important elements of the book to archived blogs.  The page numbers shown are the actual page they appear on in the book. Here is the Appendix – and these are all the nuggets and their corresponding page numbers:

Definition of “nugget” – 3, Doors & Windows – 7, Manufacturing – 11, Real Estate – 11, Shipping – 12,Maps, – 15, Corporations – 20, Traffic Cops – 23, Know basic Spanish – 30, Panama – 33, Roof Line – 42, Plumita Pacifica Web Address – 65, Getting the Best a Tico has to Offer – 84, Power Surges – 86, Liberia Airport – 88, Attitude – 104, Cellular Phones – 117, Newspapers – 18, Your Embassy – 137, Buying & Selling Cars – 154, Drive Slowly – 161, Arriving at the Airport – 168, Wages & Prices – 170, Undertows – 226, Life Ring – 230, Avoiding Customs Confiscations – 234, Driving Rules – 236, Walking in the City – 249, Purchasing Anything – 258, Buying Fresh Produce – 263, Bus Tickets – 272, to “Bribe” or not to “Bribe” – 313, Traffic ticket Prices – 315, Exiting the Country – 337

And just in case you’re interested… here’s the table of contents:

Introduction and Preliminary Comments – 3, My First Trip -15, Lost in Guanacaste – Playa Coyote – 20, Trust with a Child – 26, Lost in Panama – 29, Attorneys – 35, My Contractor – 38, My Security Guard – 61, My Toldo – 67, Getting a Land Line Phone and Internet – 76, A Cellular Phone – 115, A Country Doctor – 124, A Lesson Well Learned – 130, A Little Green Frog – 138, A Little Brown Frog and a Bat – 146, A “Murphy’s Law” Day – 153, Driving in the Rainy Season – 161, Drunk Drivers – 174, Fiesta del Toros – 185, Getting a Drivers License – 195, INS and a Minor Accident – 203, Lifeguards – 224, Passing through Customs – 232, Rules of the Road for Tico Driving – 236, San Jose – 241, Shopping and Making Tamales – 250, Taking the Bus – 272, Turtles in My Front Yard – 281, Untitled – 287, When it Rains it Pours (sometimes) – 294, She Found My Lot – 307, My First Traffic Ticket – 312, Ticket # 2 – 316, My Radar Detector – 318, Ticket # 3 (after a slow speed chase) – 324, A Christmas Parade – 338, Sex (the truth about ticos) – 343, Photo Album – 347, Appendix – 374

chapter 9 continued

I get on line to grupoice.com.  With a little assistance from one of the employees at the internet café I now have a list of modems.  I call the store in Liberia that they refer me to as being the best place to go for my modem.  The employee at the store says they don’t have any (at least ICE wasn’t lying).  Maybe in two weeks they say.  Why do I sense that “two weeks” is the standard disclaimer?   In two weeks I’ll be in Ca.   I mention to the employee at the internet café that I could just buy one there while I’m in familiar California.  He reminds me that telephone equipment in C.R. is configured slightly differently than in the U.S. and suggests that I buy my modem in C.R.   Oh yes, he is correct.  That’s why my Ca. cell phone won’t work here.  It will work in certain other countries but apparently the government here wants to be sure you are forced to use ICE.   Heaven forbid you should be able to avoid this nuisance. 

But in the meantime, I’ve also had comical experiences around opening bank accounts in C.R., so I decide to go to B.N. to inquire what it is that they require for opening an account.  It seems that in the U.S. you just give your name and S.S. number and address to the bank and you’re set.  Not in C.R.  You need a lot of serious proof of your existence. 

Now, I’ve been in this branch of B.N. before and had as long as an hour and a half wait.  But it’s the only branch in town.  I need to get my oil changed too and there’s a place close to this branch where I can do that so lets kill two birds with one stone.  It works!  The oil change is done long before I get the list of requirements to be able to open an account with B.N. (it’s different with each bank) and I can finally head for home. 

Here’s the bottom line.  The only non “I’m trying to get the internet” time I spent today was a half hour for lunch and the stop to pick up the curtains.  I pulled up in front of my house at 5pm.  Seven hours and I’m not much closer to having the internet than I was this morning.  You see why ICE needs security guards?

SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise by Gary Davis – plumitapacifica.com

30 Aug

This is the continuation of a series of posts on my blog to promote the e-book SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA – which is a Guide to… the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise… This is a guide book that will give you the kind of insider’s knowledge that you might wish you had before you made your decision to move or not move to Costa Rica.

Every blog entry will start with the appendix because that way when you read whatever else I have posted it will 1. make sense (I hope) and 2. give you a point of reference in case you realize you need to read something that is “archived”.  Because if you read every blog I enter you will have eventually read the whole e-book and won’t need to order it for $2.99 from Amazon or B&N.  All you’ll be missing are the photos that show what you might expect if you choose to undertake the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise.

As I said, I will start each blog with the appendix so that the reader can reference important elements of the book to archived blogs.  The page numbers shown are the actual page they appear on in the book. Here is the Appendix – and these are all the nuggets and their corresponding page numbers:

Definition of “nugget” – 3, Doors & Windows – 7, Manufacturing – 11, Real Estate – 11, Shipping – 12,Maps, – 15, Corporations – 20, Traffic Cops – 23, Know basic Spanish – 30, Panama – 33, Roof Line – 42, Plumita Pacifica Web Address – 65, Getting the Best a Tico has to Offer – 84, Power Surges – 86, Liberia Airport – 88, Attitude – 104, Cellular Phones – 117, Newspapers – 18, Your Embassy – 137, Buying & Selling Cars – 154, Drive Slowly – 161, Arriving at the Airport – 168, Wages & Prices – 170, Undertows – 226, Life Ring – 230, Avoiding Customs Confiscations – 234, Driving Rules – 236, Walking in the City – 249, Purchasing Anything – 258, Buying Fresh Produce – 263, Bus Tickets – 272, to “Bribe” or not to “Bribe” – 313, Traffic ticket Prices – 315, Exiting the Country – 337

And just in case you’re interested… here’s the table of contents:

Introduction and Preliminary Comments – 3, My First Trip -15, Lost in Guanacaste – Playa Coyote – 20, Trust with a Child – 26, Lost in Panama – 29, Attorneys – 35, My Contractor – 38, My Security Guard – 61, My Toldo – 67, Getting a Land Line Phone and Internet – 76, A Cellular Phone – 115, A Country Doctor – 124, A Lesson Well Learned – 130, A Little Green Frog – 138, A Little Brown Frog and a Bat – 146, A “Murphy’s Law” Day – 153, Driving in the Rainy Season – 161, Drunk Drivers – 174, Fiesta del Toros – 185, Getting a Drivers License – 195, INS and a Minor Accident – 203, Lifeguards – 224, Passing through Customs – 232, Rules of the Road for Tico Driving – 236, San Jose – 241, Shopping and Making Tamales – 250, Taking the Bus – 272, Turtles in My Front Yard – 281, Untitled – 287, When it Rains it Pours (sometimes) – 294, She Found My Lot – 307, My First Traffic Ticket – 312, Ticket # 2 – 316, My Radar Detector – 318, Ticket # 3 (after a slow speed chase) – 324, A Christmas Parade – 338, Sex (the truth about ticos) – 343, Photo Album – 347, Appendix – 374

chapter 9 continued

I have never stood in so many lines with so many people who appear to be content to stand in line like they have nothing better to do.  Can you imagine the fidgeting and comments that would be flying around the room in Ca. if no matter which public place you went to there was always a line?

Anyway, I got signed up for internet service and headed off to the ICE office to get my modem.   Remember, at this point I’m thinking my phone line is right around the corner.

ICE says, in short, “you don’t have a line yet so you can’t buy a modem, come back when you have a line”.   Their office had a security guard too.

So back to today… it’s six months later and I have my land line.  I take off for the ICE office in Nicoya at 10am.  I make a brief stop to pick up some curtains I had made by the woman who made my toldo (see My Toldo).   I’m winning “la guerra de los zancudos”, by the way.   I arrive at ICE Nicoya at 11:45.   I only have about a forty five minute wait.   It’s my turn.  I tell the guy I’m just here to buy my modem.

He says they don’t have any modems.  I said “but in January this is where I had to come to buy a modem”.  He said “ah yes, in January we had modems.  Now there are no modems in the entire country.”  I’m incredulous!  But once again the security guard is ready.

But this is a good time to get as much information as I can because I want to make my forty five minute wait worthwhile.  I ask if I might be able to buy a modem in the U.S. and bring it back with me.  He says yes.  I ask “which modem”.

He tells me to go to the ICE website where there is a list of all the modems that work with their equipment.  And it turns out I also must open a bank account at Banco National so RACSA can debit my account automatically, monthly, for payment for service I don’t even receive yet.  There are other banks in C.R. but the one where I currently have an account, which is a major international bank (not government run like most of the banks in C.R.), is not authorized to handle that transaction.   As a matter of fact there is no other bank in C.R. authorized to handle that transaction.

There is a branch of B.N. in Santa Cruz.  I take off for Santa Cruz where the internet café I use is.  To make a long story short, I may be able to buy a modem from a private source.

SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise by Gary Davis – plumitapacifica.com

29 Aug

This is the continuation of a series of posts on my blog to promote the e-book SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA – which is a Guide to… the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise… This is a guide book that will give you the kind of insider’s knowledge that you might wish you had before you made your decision to move or not move to Costa Rica.

Every blog entry will start with the appendix because that way when you read whatever else I have posted it will 1. make sense (I hope) and 2. give you a point of reference in case you realize you need to read something that is “archived”.  Because if you read every blog I enter you will have eventually read the whole e-book and won’t need to order it for $2.99 from Amazon or B&N.  All you’ll be missing are the photos that show what you might expect if you choose to undertake the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise.

As I said, I will start each blog with the appendix so that the reader can reference important elements of the book to archived blogs.  The page numbers shown are the actual page they appear on in the book. Here is the Appendix – and these are all the nuggets and their corresponding page numbers:

Definition of “nugget” – 3, Doors & Windows – 7, Manufacturing – 11, Real Estate – 11, Shipping – 12,Maps, – 15, Corporations – 20, Traffic Cops – 23, Know basic Spanish – 30, Panama – 33, Roof Line – 42, Plumita Pacifica Web Address – 65, Getting the Best a Tico has to Offer – 84, Power Surges – 86, Liberia Airport – 88, Attitude – 104, Cellular Phones – 117, Newspapers – 18, Your Embassy – 137, Buying & Selling Cars – 154, Drive Slowly – 161, Arriving at the Airport – 168, Wages & Prices – 170, Undertows – 226, Life Ring – 230, Avoiding Customs Confiscations – 234, Driving Rules – 236, Walking in the City – 249, Purchasing Anything – 258, Buying Fresh Produce – 263, Bus Tickets – 272, to “Bribe” or not to “Bribe” – 313, Traffic ticket Prices – 315, Exiting the Country – 337

And just in case you’re interested… here’s the table of contents:

Introduction and Preliminary Comments – 3, My First Trip -15, Lost in Guanacaste – Playa Coyote – 20, Trust with a Child – 26, Lost in Panama – 29, Attorneys – 35, My Contractor – 38, My Security Guard – 61, My Toldo – 67, Getting a Land Line Phone and Internet – 76, A Cellular Phone – 115, A Country Doctor – 124, A Lesson Well Learned – 130, A Little Green Frog – 138, A Little Brown Frog and a Bat – 146, A “Murphy’s Law” Day – 153, Driving in the Rainy Season – 161, Drunk Drivers – 174, Fiesta del Toros – 185, Getting a Drivers License – 195, INS and a Minor Accident – 203, Lifeguards – 224, Passing through Customs – 232, Rules of the Road for Tico Driving – 236, San Jose – 241, Shopping and Making Tamales – 250, Taking the Bus – 272, Turtles in My Front Yard – 281, Untitled – 287, When it Rains it Pours (sometimes) – 294, She Found My Lot – 307, My First Traffic Ticket – 312, Ticket # 2 – 316, My Radar Detector – 318, Ticket # 3 (after a slow speed chase) – 324, A Christmas Parade – 338, Sex (the truth about ticos) – 343, Photo Album – 347, Appendix – 374

chapter 9 continued

Well, so much for prayer… and, I also held positive thoughts of expectation because I really thought getting the internet would go pretty smoothly.

Here’s the background.  In January (six months ago) when it seemed for sure I would have a land line soon, I did the research necessary to find out how to receive the internet.  I know cable doesn’t exist in my area so obviously it would have to come through my phone line.  I went to ICE in Santa Cruz, where I had been going for all these phone tribulations.  Seemed logical.  But no, the ICE office there has nothing to do with the internet.  Now, doesn’t it seem obvious that the same government controlled monopoly that controls both the phone and the internet would have the same services in all offices? 

Nope, they told me I had to go to the ICE office in Nicoya, where they said I would need to purchase a special modem that would allow me to receive internet service via phone line, and request internet service there.  Nicoya is the next town of more than 300 people  (it also has only one signal and that’s at the main highway where you enter the town) about a half hour south of Santa Cruz.  Ok, I’m off to Nicoya.  Coincidentally, Nicoya was also the nearest place I could sign up for the internet, which I was told would be RACSA.   RACSA (don’t ask me what those letters stand for) is the internet division of ICE.

The other place was Liberia, which is two hours from me.  Good grief!   But at least it’s a pretty drive and on relatively good blacktop.

 I decided to get signed up first and then go to ICE to buy my modem.  The ICE office had given me the name of a business in Nicoya that offered the internet sign up service with the state controlled monopoly, which is called RACSA (I saw someplace what those letters stand for but it’s unimportant).  Knowing that there are no address’s in C.R., I called the place to get directions.  This landmark substitute for address’s can present some interesting challenges to getting where you want.    I did finally find the place, after many calls to describe where I was at the moment to a female employee. 

The girl who had been giving me directions turned out to be a gorgeous little thing so I forgave her for being less than brilliant with her directions.  What the heck, in C.R. it seems that time is of no value.  So what if I spent an extra half hour trying to find the place?  I’m serious.  Time simply seems to have little value to Costa Ricans. 

Maybe that’s why they have the first or second longest life expectancy in the world (a fact I read about).  

SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise by Gary Davis – plumitapacifica.com

28 Aug

This is the continuation of a series of posts on my blog to promote the e-book SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA – which is a Guide to… the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise… This is a guide book that will give you the kind of insider’s knowledge that you might wish you had before you made your decision to move or not move to Costa Rica.

Every blog entry will start with the appendix because that way when you read whatever else I have posted it will 1. make sense (I hope) and 2. give you a point of reference in case you realize you need to read something that is “archived”.  Because if you read every blog I enter you will have eventually read the whole e-book and won’t need to order it for $2.99 from Amazon or B&N.  All you’ll be missing are the photos that show what you might expect if you choose to undertake the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise.

As I said, I will start each blog with the appendix so that the reader can reference important elements of the book to archived blogs.  The page numbers shown are the actual page they appear on in the book. Here is the Appendix – and these are all the nuggets and their corresponding page numbers:

Definition of “nugget” – 3, Doors & Windows – 7, Manufacturing – 11, Real Estate – 11, Shipping – 12,Maps, – 15, Corporations – 20, Traffic Cops – 23, Know basic Spanish – 30, Panama – 33, Roof Line – 42, Plumita Pacifica Web Address – 65, Getting the Best a Tico has to Offer – 84, Power Surges – 86, Liberia Airport – 88, Attitude – 104, Cellular Phones – 117, Newspapers – 18, Your Embassy – 137, Buying & Selling Cars – 154, Drive Slowly – 161, Arriving at the Airport – 168, Wages & Prices – 170, Undertows – 226, Life Ring – 230, Avoiding Customs Confiscations – 234, Driving Rules – 236, Walking in the City – 249, Purchasing Anything – 258, Buying Fresh Produce – 263, Bus Tickets – 272, to “Bribe” or not to “Bribe” – 313, Traffic ticket Prices – 315, Exiting the Country – 337

And just in case you’re interested… here’s the table of contents:

Introduction and Preliminary Comments – 3, My First Trip -15, Lost in Guanacaste – Playa Coyote – 20, Trust with a Child – 26, Lost in Panama – 29, Attorneys – 35, My Contractor – 38, My Security Guard – 61, My Toldo – 67, Getting a Land Line Phone and Internet – 76, A Cellular Phone – 115, A Country Doctor – 124, A Lesson Well Learned – 130, A Little Green Frog – 138, A Little Brown Frog and a Bat – 146, A “Murphy’s Law” Day – 153, Driving in the Rainy Season – 161, Drunk Drivers – 174, Fiesta del Toros – 185, Getting a Drivers License – 195, INS and a Minor Accident – 203, Lifeguards – 224, Passing through Customs – 232, Rules of the Road for Tico Driving – 236, San Jose – 241, Shopping and Making Tamales – 250, Taking the Bus – 272, Turtles in My Front Yard – 281, Untitled – 287, When it Rains it Pours (sometimes) – 294, She Found My Lot – 307, My First Traffic Ticket – 312, Ticket # 2 – 316, My Radar Detector – 318, Ticket # 3 (after a slow speed chase) – 324, A Christmas Parade – 338, Sex (the truth about ticos) – 343, Photo Album – 347, Appendix – 374

chapter 9 continued

Hallelujah!!… It has been a total of just over 6 months but I think I finally have a land line phone! On a rainy afternoon two days ago I happened to be in my car in an area where ICE (bless their twisted hearts) has a signal strong enough for my cell phone to pick up, when they called me. I couldn’t understand their rapid fire Spanish completely but it seemed they were telling me my phone had a problem.  Well… duh… I know it has a problem.  The problem is called ICE (but I didn’t say that). 

After a few minutes of me repeating to them what I think is the bottom line of what they’re saying, which is the way my communication with nearly everyone here goes because they have a tendency to say way more than I need to know to get the idea, I finally figured out they were trying to tell me they were near my house and wanted me there (for why I never did figure out).

Wouldn’t you know I was an hour away down the road that now has been slowed to a crawl because of the potholes?  I assured them Nidia would be there and that she could show them anything they needed to find and that I would be there ASAP. 

(When the government finally gets around to doing something that is not the time to try to arrange a more convenient time for you.) 

By the time I got to Junquillal their truck was parked in front of this building which has no windows, lots of towers and wires coming out of and next to it, and a 10′ chain link fence with razor wire on top surrounding it.  I think it’s their version of Fort Knox and I can understand why.  But the gate was open so I went up and pounded on the door.      I’m glad Costa Ricans are so friendly.  Because the look of fear and surprise on the guys face told me they don’t often get people pounding on that particular door. A smile goes a long way and I had one so the guy was at ease quickly.  I introduced myself, which brought a look of relief to his face (I think he was the guy who called me because I recognized his voice and he seemed to be familiar with my name), and in rapid fire Spanish I think he was telling me they discovered two problems. 

One was at the entrance to my property where all the new stuff is and the other in Fort Knox.  By the way, I got a good look inside the building.  I’m glad they have it protected the way it is because it was chocked full of electronics and definitely a control hub for the area.  He said they had fixed the problem at my end and were nearly complete with the second repair.  He told me to go home and he would call.  He called.  It works!!! … god I hope this is the end of the story but only time will tell.  The next step is to get the internet piped in.  Pray for me.

SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise by Gary Davis – plumitapacifica.com

27 Aug

This is the continuation of a series of posts on my blog to promote the e-book SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA – which is a Guide to… the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise… This is a guide book that will give you the kind of insider’s knowledge that you might wish you had before you made your decision to move or not move to Costa Rica.

Every blog entry will start with the appendix because that way when you read whatever else I have posted it will 1. make sense (I hope) and 2. give you a point of reference in case you realize you need to read something that is “archived”.  Because if you read every blog I enter you will have eventually read the whole e-book and won’t need to order it for $2.99 from Amazon or B&N.  All you’ll be missing are the photos that show what you might expect if you choose to undertake the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise.

As I said, I will start each blog with the appendix so that the reader can reference important elements of the book to archived blogs.  The page numbers shown are the actual page they appear on in the book. Here is the Appendix – and these are all the nuggets and their corresponding page numbers:

Definition of “nugget” – 3, Doors & Windows – 7, Manufacturing – 11, Real Estate – 11, Shipping – 12,Maps, – 15, Corporations – 20, Traffic Cops – 23, Know basic Spanish – 30, Panama – 33, Roof Line – 42, Plumita Pacifica Web Address – 65, Getting the Best a Tico has to Offer – 84, Power Surges – 86, Liberia Airport – 88, Attitude – 104, Cellular Phones – 117, Newspapers – 18, Your Embassy – 137, Buying & Selling Cars – 154, Drive Slowly – 161, Arriving at the Airport – 168, Wages & Prices – 170, Undertows – 226, Life Ring – 230, Avoiding Customs Confiscations – 234, Driving Rules – 236, Walking in the City – 249, Purchasing Anything – 258, Buying Fresh Produce – 263, Bus Tickets – 272, to “Bribe” or not to “Bribe” – 313, Traffic ticket Prices – 315, Exiting the Country – 337

And just in case you’re interested… here’s the table of contents:

Introduction and Preliminary Comments – 3, My First Trip -15, Lost in Guanacaste – Playa Coyote – 20, Trust with a Child – 26, Lost in Panama – 29, Attorneys – 35, My Contractor – 38, My Security Guard – 61, My Toldo – 67, Getting a Land Line Phone and Internet – 76, A Cellular Phone – 115, A Country Doctor – 124, A Lesson Well Learned – 130, A Little Green Frog – 138, A Little Brown Frog and a Bat – 146, A “Murphy’s Law” Day – 153, Driving in the Rainy Season – 161, Drunk Drivers – 174, Fiesta del Toros – 185, Getting a Drivers License – 195, INS and a Minor Accident – 203, Lifeguards – 224, Passing through Customs – 232, Rules of the Road for Tico Driving – 236, San Jose – 241, Shopping and Making Tamales – 250, Taking the Bus – 272, Turtles in My Front Yard – 281, Untitled – 287, When it Rains it Pours (sometimes) – 294, She Found My Lot – 307, My First Traffic Ticket – 312, Ticket # 2 – 316, My Radar Detector – 318, Ticket # 3 (after a slow speed chase) – 324, A Christmas Parade – 338, Sex (the truth about ticos) – 343, Photo Album – 347, Appendix – 374

chapter 9 continued

Since writing that last line the airport in Liberia is now up and running.  What it will do to paradise still remains to be seen, but the airport is a dream compared to the original.

But back to the cell phone.  Turns out I had to buy a new phone also.  One that had an exterior port to accept the cable from the antenna.  The good news is that this woopdydoo phone is supposed to get the internet and supposedly has the ability to be linked via USB to my computer.  Now, that would be exciting because since my land line phone doesn’t work I have no access to the internet unless I go the sixty minutes down the rough dirt road to Santa Cruz to an internet cafe.  And that road has become Volkswagen sized potholes linked because the municipality only runs a grader down it once per year, at the end of the rainy season.  So traffic begins to create potholes all through the dry season and then when the rainy season starts they very quickly enlarge and get much worse.

Oh yes… cell phone… I bring everything home after I go to a hardware store to get a 20′ pole that will allow me to put the antenna up 30′ if I need to (because I can mount it 10′ off the ground on my house), get it all assembled, plug everything in… it still doesn’t receive a signal.  Did I say ICE sucks?!  (Not to be political, but what can one expect from a government controlled monopoly?)

SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise by Gary Davis – plumitapacifica.com

26 Aug

This is the continuation of a series of posts on my blog to promote the e-book SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA – which is a Guide to… the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise… This is a guide book that will give you the kind of insider’s knowledge that you might wish you had before you made your decision to move or not move to Costa Rica.

Every blog entry will start with the appendix because that way when you read whatever else I have posted it will 1. make sense (I hope) and 2. give you a point of reference in case you realize you need to read something that is “archived”.  Because if you read every blog I enter you will have eventually read the whole e-book and won’t need to order it for $2.99 from Amazon or B&N.  All you’ll be missing are the photos that show what you might expect if you choose to undertake the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise.

As I said, I will start each blog with the appendix so that the reader can reference important elements of the book to archived blogs.  The page numbers shown are the actual page they appear on in the book. Here is the Appendix – and these are all the nuggets and their corresponding page numbers:

Definition of “nugget” – 3, Doors & Windows – 7, Manufacturing – 11, Real Estate – 11, Shipping – 12,Maps, – 15, Corporations – 20, Traffic Cops – 23, Know basic Spanish – 30, Panama – 33, Roof Line – 42, Plumita Pacifica Web Address – 65, Getting the Best a Tico has to Offer – 84, Power Surges – 86, Liberia Airport – 88, Attitude – 104, Cellular Phones – 117, Newspapers – 18, Your Embassy – 137, Buying & Selling Cars – 154, Drive Slowly – 161, Arriving at the Airport – 168, Wages & Prices – 170, Undertows – 226, Life Ring – 230, Avoiding Customs Confiscations – 234, Driving Rules – 236, Walking in the City – 249, Purchasing Anything – 258, Buying Fresh Produce – 263, Bus Tickets – 272, to “Bribe” or not to “Bribe” – 313, Traffic ticket Prices – 315, Exiting the Country – 337

And just in case you’re interested… here’s the table of contents:

Introduction and Preliminary Comments – 3, My First Trip -15, Lost in Guanacaste – Playa Coyote – 20, Trust with a Child – 26, Lost in Panama – 29, Attorneys – 35, My Contractor – 38, My Security Guard – 61, My Toldo – 67, Getting a Land Line Phone and Internet – 76, A Cellular Phone – 115, A Country Doctor – 124, A Lesson Well Learned – 130, A Little Green Frog – 138, A Little Brown Frog and a Bat – 146, A “Murphy’s Law” Day – 153, Driving in the Rainy Season – 161, Drunk Drivers – 174, Fiesta del Toros – 185, Getting a Drivers License – 195, INS and a Minor Accident – 203, Lifeguards – 224, Passing through Customs – 232, Rules of the Road for Tico Driving – 236, San Jose – 241, Shopping and Making Tamales – 250, Taking the Bus – 272, Turtles in My Front Yard – 281, Untitled – 287, When it Rains it Pours (sometimes) – 294, She Found My Lot – 307, My First Traffic Ticket – 312, Ticket # 2 – 316, My Radar Detector – 318, Ticket # 3 (after a slow speed chase) – 324, A Christmas Parade – 338, Sex (the truth about ticos) – 343, Photo Album – 347, Appendix – 374

chapter 9 continued

It’s been about six weeks since the electrician installed the phone lines. It hasn’t worked since.  I call ICE; they say they’ll be out.  I don’t know if they ever worked on the line or not.  I never see them near my place.  But the baffling part is that my line is new from the main road to my house!  The rainy season started about a month ago.

The phone didn’t work during the dry season and now the neighbors say it’s because of the rainy season. They say phone service gets really bad during the rainy season.  Did I say ICE sucks?!

Just yesterday I went to a cell phone store in Liberia (two hours away) because I had heard that I could get an antenna that would help my cell phone receive a signal in my house.   I’m thinking that maybe that would ease the frustration while I wait for ICE.   Liberia is the second largest town in C.R.   It also only has one traffic signal… at the only major intersection.  But it’s big enough to have an interesting shopping district.  (Well, maybe not for you ladies.)  And it even has a movie theater!  That’s exciting to me because I only turn my T.V. on about three times a year.  As a matter of fact, I’ve been here six months already and the only time I tried to turn it on it didn’t work.  Something to do with a malfunction of the Direct TV equipment I so graciously signed up for so Mario and Nidia (see My Security Guard) would have T.V.  Anyway, it’s the only theater north of San Jose (five and a half hours away).  I have trouble motivating myself to go there though because it’s mosquito infested… strange.  Maybe I’ll remember to bring my repellant next time.  Liberia is the hub for tourist traffic in the northern part of C.R. and has the only airport large enough to handle the major airlines.  It’s being upgraded now to be able to handle (I don’t know how many) people per hour.  Whew!  I wonder what that will do to paradise.

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