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

19 Mar

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 30


This is a “good luck” story because it ended up with finding my little piece of paradise.

As it was, #1 was not long gone yet.  As a matter of fact, she didn’t know she was gone.  But after several more trips I found that even though I enjoyed her company I began to be aware of the reasons why she would not be a permanent fixture in my life.  No need to talk about those.  However, because of those feelings I began to correspond with a few women on a Costa Rica connections website I had come across.  Coincidentally, I had also begun to feel like I may not find the property I was looking for in C.R. either.  I had enjoyed her company though for maybe six or eight more trips while exploring beaches on the Pacific coast from Panama to nearly Nicaragua while being led on wild goose chases by Realtors.

The Realtors in C.R. are higher in enthusiasm than they are in integrity and after responding a few times to “got just what you want, come on down” I began to realize I was almost looking for a needle in a hay stack with my parameters for the “perfect property” and so I thought I better start exploring other countries.  My parameters were quite simple and expressed very clearly to these disgusting money hungry gringo grabbers who call themselves “Realtors”… a lot that is beachfront with no possibility of any other structure or vehicular artery between me and the water… ever!  Now is that clear or is that clear?

You see, the problem with the real-estate industry in C.R. is that it is completely unregulated by any government authority and anyone can be a Realtor in C.R.  Just hang out your shingle and go for it.  It has no MLS and the Realtors don’t often travel outside their area of interest because the roads make it a very inefficient use of their time.  But, I had been referred to a Realtor, who was actually listening to me, by his associate in a different part of the country.  He would send me pictures (what a concept, none of the others ever did that) that actually looked like what I was looking for.  Finally, he sent me one last picture with the apology that this was the last lot of which he was aware in his area that met my parameters but couldn’t guarantee it would still be available in three weeks when I was due to arrive.  I wrote him back that I was very appreciative of his good work on my behalf and that I would come to Playa Junquillal in Guanacaste because even if it had sold I wanted to shake his hand, buy him dinner and thank him in person anyway for actually presenting me with what I wanted.

So this was to be a three part trip for me.  First, to C.R. to meet one of the women I had been corresponding with and go to Junquillal.  Second, to go to Panama and look around, and by the way, I like C.R. much better although you’ll see a good Lost in Panama story.  Third, was back to C.R. to hopefully connect with another woman from the website, who by the way, may just be a keeper (#4) and have one last go at #1.  Needless to say, I was going to have fun no matter whether I found the property I wanted or not.


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