Aug 21 2012

A Day in the Life

There are three questions people always ask us about living in Costa Rica:

  1. What is the cost of living?
  2. How about health care?
  3. What do you do all day?

On our website, we try to answer these three questions, and we address the latter one in the first article of our monthly newsletter: “What’s Up with the Yeatmans?” On a monthly basis, we’re busy. But what’s a typical day like? Obviously, we’re not as busy as we were in the U.S. since we don’t have full-time jobs. In the States, Gloria and I both worked 40+ hour/weeks, me in job placement and Gloria at a university. Most of what we do now, we did after work and on weekends.

  • Food shopping
  • Laundry
  • Doctors visits
  • Cooking
  • Exercising
  • Restaurants
  • Reading
  • Napping
  • Working on our website

So much of what we did on weekends and evenings in the U.S., we do here anytime, usually during daylight hours. It may take longer here than it would in the U.S. — there isn’t such a thing as one-stop-shopping here. But that’s okay.  Part of the fun is the hunt for what we need. We weren’t necessarily looking for easier…we wanted different. Remember, in retirement, you can reinvent yourself if you so choose. We decided to write, read, cook, bake, give tours, nap, volunteer, and go to the beach.

A typical day for me starts at 5:30am when our cats wake us up to be fed. I open the door to a usually beautiful morning, and sweep the porch. At 6am, I feed our cats who have been patiently waiting, and then eat breakfast myself – either a pineapple smoothie or homemade yogurt and cereal, and then check my email and Facebook.

Most days, I meet some friends around 7am and walk 2-4 miles, up and down hills. When I return to the cabina, I am ready for a hot shower. My morning routine continues with cleaning the cats’ litter box and making the bed. On many days, I will then go into the town of San Ramon to run errands – buy groceries, pay my phone bill, go to the Macrobiotica for vitamins or the Farmacia for medications — talk with friends in the Central Park, or attend meetings. Often, I will have lunch in town at the little Soda Kendy in the Central Market – only $1 or $2, depending on how hungry I am. I am usually back at our cabina by 2pm.

In the meantime, Gloria has usually been working on our website or the Community Action Alliance website which she created and maintains on a volunteer basis. She loves spending time in the kitchen, baking bread, making yogurt and natural peanut butter, and preparing dinner. When she’s not busy in the kitchen or updating websites, she often comes into town with me to run errands and attend meetings.

Often, especially in the afternoons during the rainy season, we spend some time napping or reading. We have dinner about 6pm, which is when we also feed our cats and bring then in for the night. Gloria cooks and I wash dishes, a deal that works well for us both. We watch a little television or read after dinner and go to bed around 10pm. We’re busy here in Costa Rica, very busy, but it’s our choice. Everything is our choice. It’s a tremendous opportunity to explore our interests and explore our lives.

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