Some Much Needed Comic Relief

San Jose Travel Blog

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This picture is comic relief because of how repulsive I look.

My last blog entries have been long and centered on some serious topics. Thanks to those of you who read through them. I truly appreciate you bearing with me as I struggle to find myself and learn some lessons in a foreign country. For those of you who glanced at them, I assure you this blog entry is more your speed and your style… and I guess thanks for “reading” too.

I put together a list of things that I think indicate that someone has adjusted to life here in Costa Rica. These things are normal occurrences in my every-day life, but to those of you not living here, you will most likely be appalled by the things that I now consider ‘normal.’ Enjoy!

You know you’ve adjusted to life in Costa Rica when:

You hear “de nada” and you wonder what Spanish-speaking country the person is from.

Dancing at work!
It’s only “Mucho Gusto” here.

You start using the word “Mae” casually. (*Translation: Mae = Man/Dude)

You are used to a meal at a restaurant costing $4, but a value meal at McDonalds costing $10.

You are still convinced that your feet and hips cannot physically move in the way that the Latin dancers’ do.

You no longer run screaming out of the room when you see a cockroach, mouse, or a tarantula.

You refer to your homestay mom as Ticamadre.

You know that a meeting starting at 1 pm on Tico time really means it will start around 2 or 2:30 pm.

You are not surprised to find out that buying a 4-bedroom house here only costs $60,000 more than an SUV from 2000.

You find a fresh pot of coffee in any kitchen you enter.

Spiced rum at the company luncheon.

You are used to asking for directions and getting “go to that dog and take a right, then a left by the yellow car…” as a response because there are no street signs.

You hear “Malpais” and instead of thinking “bad country,” you immediately start singing one of their hit songs.

You high-five someone nearby when you feel the earth trembling and quaking beneath your feet.

You are confused when you see a meal served without rice and beans.

You see long lines of people waiting outside to use the ATM because only one customer is allowed in at a time.

You carry an umbrella and jacket even when the sky is clear, cloudless, and blue.

You help kids study for their English tests and find out that they are learning vocabulary words you still do not know in English.

You are 20 and everyone around your age in the country is already married with a kid or two.

Clown on the street!

You want a banana for breakfast so you go out and cut it down from the tree in your front yard.

You have tried upwards of 50 new tropical fruits with crazy names that are nearly impossible to memorize.

You cannot walk one block without seeing Bob Marley’s face on t-shirts, backpacks, helmets, and hats.

Your entire company stops working and convenes around the TV during a World Cup game.

You feel at ease while showering with all the exposed wires running to the heat the water.

You pay $2 to go to the movies and $3 to go to an IMAX movie.

You tell your friends to ask for “the gringa” when they call your house phone.

Your boss brings spiced rum and wine to a company luncheon.


That list provides a pretty good taste of the real Costa Rica. If you’re ready and willing to deal with (and eventually enjoy) all of the aforementioned things get on a plane and come here already!

skimonty83 says:
Very nice! I just got back from Costa Rica for only 2 weeks, but I recognize many of these points that made your list. Enjoy your time! Pura Vida
Posted on: Jul 12, 2010
Renfail says:
Yeah I'm having a hard time getting adjusted to the cost of living back in the States....which is exactly why I'm heading to Central America for the winter :)

These blog posts were wonderful, by the way. I just read them through this morning/early afternoon and found them very enlightening. Costa Rica is on my list as I make my way down through Central America next year...third or fourth on my list depending on how I feel about the places I reading this was very entertaining and educational :) I bookmarked the CouchSurfing site as well to start using once I set up base in Cancun this October, and I'll be using it in addition to TravBuddy as I work my way down into South America :)

I wanted to see the new Twilight film and Inception, but I'm like 1.5 hours up in the mountains and it's 12 dollars at the theater in Steamboat Springs, which means a long-ass ride to town + 12 dollars for a ticket, so films for me for the summer!
Posted on: Jul 10, 2010
Renfail says:
This is epic :) A lot of that reminds me of some of my times in Bulgaria, especially the "You feel at ease while showering with all the exposed wires running to the heat the water."

Had that happen at SO many hotels over the years!
Posted on: Jul 10, 2010
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This picture is comic relief becau…
This picture is comic relief beca…
Dancing at work!
Dancing at work!
Spiced rum at the company luncheon.
Spiced rum at the company luncheon.
Clown on the street!
Clown on the street!
San Jose
photo by: Isoinspira