Dec 28 2014

Misconception #6: Living in Costa Rica is paradise, right?

“What are some common misconceptions people have when they hear you are retired in Costa Rica?”

We’ve been living in Costa Rica for almost six years and have to admit, there are a few misconceptions some folks have about our lives here.

Misconception #6: Living in Costa Rica is paradise, right?

MonkeyOnBananasCosta Rica IS a country with great physical beauty. There are beaches with palm trees swaying in the breezes. There are lush, green forests with incredible bio-diversity. And the temperatures are spring-like, all year round – no snow to shovel or ice to melt. So yes, there are definitely elements of “paradise” here. But it’s not perfect. The lush green that we see all around us doesn’t come without a six-month-long rainy season, with anywhere from 40 to over 240 inches of rain annually. Where we live, near the town of San Ramon de Alajuela, we get about 120 inches each year. That’s a lot of rain!

But over and above the weather, we are living in Costa Rica, not vacationing here. So, all the challenges people normally face in life, we face here – what to cook for dinner, how to live on a budget, how to stay healthy, how to deal with government bureaucracy, and even what to do all day. It’s almost impossible here to accomplish one-stop-shopping. There aren’t super-stores on every corner, so we normally have to go to several places to find everything we want. And then there’s the language barrier. This is a country where Spanish is the official language and many Ticos don’t speak any English. While we can both speak enough Spanish to communicate, this can be a big challenge for folks who speak little to no Spanish. Bottom line – paradise, and life, is what you make it – whether you live in Costa Rica or anywhere else.

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