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

13 Jan

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 21 continued

I’m an “open ocean water certified” scuba diver but that’s because it’s hard to drown in a wet suit and a BCD.  But don’t ask me to do laps in a pool.  I never did figure out how to breathe and swim at the same time.

Oh well, back to the main story.

So this young tico (6’2” and the son of my lady friend), and I had been out there for awhile talking and enjoying the tranquility and movement of the ocean when I noticed that after the last swell passed I wasn’t touching the sand anymore.  Then the next swell came and I noticed that not only could I not touch the sand, my house was further away.  Uh oh, I immediately said to my tico friend that we needed to head for shore.  It was too late!  By this time his feet weren’t touching sand either and he was panicked.  I knew I could make it back to shore but I couldn’t just let him drown.  So I went over to him to get him to take my hand because I figured I could side stroke us both close enough to touch sand again.  But no, he was so panicked that he just threw himself around me, which of course sunk me.  Well, after being sunk four or five times and fighting him off, I was in trouble.  I was beginning to swallow water, was out of breath and was losing my strength.  I knew I could still save myself but I also knew I could never live with myself if I did that and he drowned.  I remember thinking, as I was losing it and watching my house get further away, that I couldn’t die now.  I’ve only had about a year to enjoy my paradise!  Thank goodness for Mario (see My Security Guard).  About that time a crowd had gathered on the beach, all of them ticos so none could help, to watch in horror as two guys drowned.  But Mario ran and got a child’s boogie board that I have.  He’s just a little guy but he went out to where the breakers were and pushed that board towards us.  I saw it coming and got back to it, then got back out to my tico friend, and here we are to tell the story.

It just so happened that the tico was here for a vacation which included visiting family.  They were part of the crowd on the beach.  I told him this would be one vacation he’d remember.  We clinked our beer bottles in happy agreement.

I now have a life ring with 100 feet of rope hanging on an outside wall of my house.  No lifeguard but at least a better chance of saving a life.

Since I first entered the story above in my journal, a chance to use that life ring has happened.   I was in Ca. when this occurred so I wasn’t here to witness it but two ticos were drowning just a little way up the beach from my house.  Mario saw them, ran and got the life ring and was able to pull one in.  The other, unfortunately…

Mario received a nice commendation from the Red Cross for at least being able to save one.


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