Traveling around the U. S. I find an inordinate amount of interest in Costa Rica. I probably shouldn’t be surprised at this, there has always been a reaction to saying “I live in Costa Rica”, but now… well it seems to be more than ever. Why is this? I am inclined to default over to observations I’ve made in past articles.
“End of the Worlders” is a handle that I give to the smaller of the group categories that I use to define those moving to Costa Rica. So many say that they feel like it “is all coming down” or, “I need to slow/quiet down” and so on.
Here are some notes of my observations from the road.
I traveled from Davis, which is in the northern part of California, to southern Utah where I camped in Zion National Park for about a week. Despite not being at all what I expected (I was set up to backpack), this was an extraordinary trip. Zion is pure magic.
I showed up in a cab that I had caught in St. George, so I found myself in “South” campground in Zion. I was essentially car camping without a car. All around me were spacious and NICE tents, trailers and motor homes. One of the tents that I saw had a lanai. I noticed the elderly gal sitting in her lanai, all screened in, nice & cozy, reading a book.
After being there for a while, I had determined that everyone, and I mean everyone, was interested, or at the very least, available to stop and converse a bit. So, later on, when I saw the owners of the aforementioned lanai-equipped tent stepping out of their tent, I felt compelled to approach them and tell them of my gawkings of their abode. They were more than happy to tell where they got it and make expressions of how much they loved their tent (they bought it through Cabellas for those who are curious).
It soon became evident that lanai equipped tents were not so rare. That older couple must have wondered at the guy that made such a fuss about it.
Anyway, my camping trip ended up being as much a social visit with people I had never met before as it was a visit to an extraordinary National Park with mind blowing hikes, views and sandstone configurations that stagger the mind.
Now, getting back to the topic at hand: there I am, out in the middle of remote desert in the southwest of the US, engaging in LOTS of conversations on the trail and in the campground, and I re-affirm that there is indeed a general interest in the country where I live – Costa Rica.
I wrote about my evening giving a talk on Costa Rica here in Davis. It was an experiment to see if the reported interest really was true. “Reported” being what visitors to Costa Rica tell me. “Everybody is talking about Costa Rica” they say. This they say to a guy while there in Costa Rica – to a guy that lives in Costa Rica – while the conversation is about the topic of moving to Costa Rica. Hmmmm, is this unbiased, truly objective positiveness about Costa Rica?
One has to wonder if it is true, and if, outside of that particular setting there really is anybody the least bit interested in Costa Rica.
You’re from Costa Rica?
- “My wife and I are considering moving there.”
- “My son is going to honeymoon there for a month.”
- “We have wanted to simplify our lives. Would a move to Costa Rica be a good way to do this?”
- “I used to live there.”
- “I own some land there.”
When I say that part of my work there in Costa Rica is consulting with folks that would like to move there, they ask for a card.
Here are some of the discussion points.
Is it less expensive there?
Yes, and no. There are some specifics here that are actually more expensive. Gas is more expensive. I’m paying a little over $5.00 per gallon for diesel. Electricity for the home is quite expensive. Cheese is really expensive and not that good, IMHO (look it up).
Overall you can make a fixed income go further here, but it requires one to let go of some of the comforts so common in the good ole’ US of A. Things like medicine and dental are reasons for at least visiting Costa Rica, if not living there.
Can I quiet my racing mind there?
Yep, you can. (Read up on the “4DOTS” theory here.)
I can only speak first hand of the air in the States, but I have had some Canadians and Europeans tell me it is the same there. The air in the States is saturated with fuss. Mental fuss. The powers that rule the air-waves are telling us what to think about, and they are good at it. As much as we might like to think that we are immune, I don’t think so.
To get away from that, to unplug, and to then think a thought that originates from whatever propensity we were born with… well this is the stuff that 4DOTS is made of.
Costa Rica provides an opportunity, not only to unplug from media, but to connect with nature. There have been studies that suggest that as we humans grow past the age of 45 (give or take), we have a decreasing ability to manage stress, and an increasing need, and beneficial result from, getting out into nature.
I think that these points made up the bulk of conversations in my travels around California and the southwest this trip. I became cautious of mentioning where I live when I would meet someone. If I had any interest in talking about something besides Costa Rica, I would say I live “out of the country” or some such. Then, if they asked, I’d try and say “Latin America” or “Central America”.
Although for the most part, I am more than happy to talk/write about my life in Costa Rica. It truly is a fascinating and wonderful place to live, and I totally get why so many would be interested in visiting, or moving to Costa Rica. But yes, there are times when I would like to talk about something different. Imagine that!