SO YOU WANT to LIVE in COSTA RICA the Adventures, Trials and Tribulations of Settling in Paradise

13 Apr

This is the continuation of a series of blogs 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

chapter 20 continued

Well, if you drive enough miles, no matter how hard you pray, Murphy will have his way with you and on June 9, 2008 he did with me.

I’m parallel parking my car on Santa Cruz’s main street, which is a comfortably two car wide one way street, but people park on both sides of it creating a treacherously narrow little passageway that you can only slowly thread your way through.  And drivers here ride your bumper making it difficult to parallel park and so just as I was cutting it to swing in close to the curb, which left my left front bumper out in the street, some guy tried to squeeze by and in so doing his car touched my bumper which put a little scrape mark on his rear quarter panel.  Whose fault was it?  Who knows?

Some people say it was his fault because he should have waited for me to finish parking rather than trying to squeeze by.  I just decided that it wasn’t worth arguing about in a language I’m not fluent enough in to conduct a good argument.

He went a little further down the street to park and survey the damage to his car and I walked up and said I had INS.  With relief in his voice, he said he was glad I did because he didn’t.  I wasn’t surprised because at the prices they charge there is no way the average tico can afford it.  Remember, this is the country where less than 50% of the people even have a car.

I get a signal on my cell phone in Sta. Cruz so I called INS and once again I ask for an English speaker but this time it’s a “barely able to”.  But between my “victim” and me we got all the information handled that the INS agent asked for over the phone.

Part of that information was my personal info including where my house is (Playa Junquillal) and where the accident did happen and where the vehicles are now located.  To answer the “vehicles located now” question I handed the phone to him.  Since there are no addresses or even street signs in C.R. I felt more confident letting a native speaker answer that.  Giving/receiving directions here even amuses the ticos.   As I listened to him describe the location he was very clear, precise and included all the landmarks that one would need to find us.   The INS person said an inspector would arrive in an hour and DO NOT move either vehicle.

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