Lair Davis (Our Man in Costa Rica)
|August 6, 2004
As of 3:00 p.m. yesterday, I am retired from working a full-time job.
Today I woke up (after sleeping late) and thought, hmmmm, I do feel different. I don’t know exactly how, but there is definitely something different going on. As I write this, I keep glancing at the clock to see if it is time to shut down the computer and start getting ready for work. It isn’t.
My first Social Security check will arrive next month. They pay you one month behind (that way they can cheat you out of one month’s pay when you die — don’t you just love how our government operates? Makes one so proud, eh?)
This adventure, moving to Costa Rica, is really going to be a challenge. I will have so much to do when I arrive, besides going to Spanish school full-time for the first month. Things such as finding a permanent place to live (I have a place reserved for me now, near the school, but I don’t think I will want to stay there permanently); and buying furniture and household stuff — everything, from the refrigerator to curtains to salt and pepper.
You don’t shop the same way in Costa Rica as in the United States. In the U.S., you just go to Costco or Walmart or Safeway and get most of the stuff you need. In Costa Rica, you have to go to different stores, sometimes in different towns, for each little thing, including food.
You buy meat from the butcher, fruit from the fruit-seller, bread from the baker, spices from the spice-vender in the central market, shoes from the shoe-seller, clothes from the “Ropa Americana” (which is the name used by stores that sell used clothing from the U.S. From what I hear, these are the best places to buy good clothes in Costa Rica. Locally made clothing falls apart, they say, so even Costa Ricans buy most of their clothes at the Ropa Americana).
Where does one buy picture-hanging hooks, I wonder. Who knows? But it will likely be an all-day excursion finding out!
Well, I wanted an adventure, and I’m going to get one.
I’ve gotten rid of most of my stuff here in Santa Cruz, California. I am rambling around in an apartment with nothing in it but my bed, computer and five open suitcases in which I keep shifting stuff around, hoping that this time all of it is going to fit.
It isn’t working. And I have six days to make it work and I’m outtahere! I think I’ll take myself out for breakfast.
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