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

3 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

Ah ha!  I’ve figured out how to beat the system in regards to paying the bills.  If I wait until my cell phone is past due but before they cut it off (sometime after the 20th but I’m not sure of the exact date).  And if I go in after the 22nd, I can pay them both.

Meanwhile, back to the internet/modems.  It’s now September (ten months after the beginning of this ordeal) and there are still no modems in the country.  I’ve been to stores in the U.S. and they agree that if ICE offers DSL, which they do, that a modem from the U.S. most likely would not work in C.R.  And to top it off, I arrive back from Ca. and have a message from RACSA (the dial-up only internet service provider) to call them.  I do. 

I am informed that since I signed up for service in January but have not made any payments since (of course!) that I am now in arrears by about $15 and my service (which I have never had) has been terminated.  If I want service I must go to a bank, pay $15 to a certain account number; fax to RACSA the payment receipt along with proof of my existence (copy of my passport), proof of corporate existence, and a letter signed by me requesting reinstatement. 

Ya thunk a orta wait tell a got me a modem?

Well, here’s a new twist.  It’s a week later and I happened to be walking past the ICE office and noticed there were only six or eight people waiting.  So I thought I’d go in and ask about modems.  I walked up to the security guard and asked my question.  He said something, in rapid fire Spanish, the only part of which I understood was “wait here”. 

He disappears but comes back in a minute and motions me to come ahead of the people waiting and talk to the girl behind the counter.  I look around to see if I’ll be attacked.  They all look calm.  I sit down and ask if/when they will have a DSL modem.  Much to my surprise they have them!  They’ve always had them.  Now I’m confused.  It turns out that it’s the dial-up modems that no one has.  But I don’t want dial-up.  I want DSL, which is what I thought I had signed up for in January.  I get excited.  Then she prints up this notice with BIG numbers on it (like the one before).  Then she informs me that DSL is not offered in my area yet.  I ask why give me the paper with numbers on it.  She says it will alert them to install a DSL modem when they offer service in my area.  When will that be?  She has no idea.

 I find it interesting that ICE will put you on a list for a service that they have no idea when they will offer.  In the mean time, I also discover that if I have DSL I don’t need RACSA.  RACSA is only for dial-up. 

You would think this would have been explained to me in the beginning.  I guess I’ll just chalk it up to one more example of government inefficiency/don’t give a shit.


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