Monthly Archives: May 2014

Cost of living update

So, I keep seeing people say how expensive Costa Rica is still. What I am going to do is blog each day how much I spend and on what and where I got it. It is my hope to be able to spend less than $2K next month for myself and my wife. Now we are on a special diet and the food is expensive. So I will include it but also show how much we spent without it as well. I eat at 6 am breakfast (diet package), 9 am morning snack (diet package), 12 pm lunch is 2 cups veggies and diet package or 8 oz of protein in place of a diet package, 3 pm afternoon snack (diet package), 6 pm dinner is either 8 oz of protein and 2 cups of veggies or if I had protein for lunch its a diet package instead of the protein, 9 pm evening snack (diet package). This is why I will in the final amount show both with and without the diet food. Hopefully I can get this done under budget. We will see. 🙂

Pura Vida!


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Open letter to my Dogs!

Freckles, Leeloo, Dobby, Ginger, Pepper, Nina, Bubbles, Bella, Gizmo, and Pixy,

We love you and some of you we would have never meet and adopted if we hadn’t moved to Costa Rica. Here is the thing, you really need to let me sleep in a few days a week. I know you have to go to the bathroom and I know the Sun can be annoying, as it annoys me from time to time as well. All I ask of you is for 1 hour extra of sleep a few days a week. Its really not that much to ask so if you could help me out with that it would be great!

Now I know you are protecting the house and the property, but when the leaves rush across the ground from the wind this is not an intruder that must be barked at! So if you could limit your barking to those things that are important I would again greatly appreciate it. Yes a person comes to the door, or walks near the property or comes in unannounced feel free! I love that you let me know this, but when I call you come to me please. If you do you will get a great big cookie!!!!!!

_DSC5457Freckles, I love that you go swimming with me. Dude you really do need to get in and out yourself. I guess it is my fault that I have started to pick you up and put you out instead of making you use the steps. So going forward you are just going to have to get in and out yourself.

_DSC5460Leeloo, if you do not stop chewing on everything! You are older now and should have more control. We have a ton of toys around for you so please limit your chewing to those items and I will give you many more belly rubs!

Dobby one of our Local Rescue dogs we adopted.

Dobby one of our Local Rescue dogs we adopted.

Dobby, you are actually the best behaved of all your brother and sisters. You come when I call, you go into the kennel when you want a treat, you only poop and pee outside. You do not chew on anything! Now you are  a little pushy, but that is only because you want so much love. I am happy to give you the love you want. Just don’t scratch me all up. 🙂



Pepper, you also are very well behaved. You are so needy! You need more attention than I think any human can give to any animal. I try as much as I can, but please the jumping up on me has got to stop. Especially the unexpected hug from behind the sofa as I sit watching TV or doing facebook! Its cute, but it sometimes is a shock!



Ginger, you also are very well behaved. Maybe if you can teach Ginger to be a little less needy and maybe if you would take some of her neediness for yourself, you two would be a perfect balance. Also while I have you here stop eating things that will make you sick. You keep eating bugs, and trying to drink out of the pool. The grass I understand why you are eating it, but don’t eat it and than come in the house and puke it up please. Stay in the grass when you do that.

Nina another rescue dog we adopted.

Nina another rescue dog we adopted.

Nina, Nina, Nina! the 3 am and or 5 am wake up call is getting old. You are a good dog, but you need to learn that just because you hear a rooster or another dog bark out in the valley somewhere it is not a wake up call for you. If you could stay asleep or let me sleep until 6 am or 7 am that would be amazing. If you do I will give you an extra cookie!



Bubbles, you are one crazy ass dog! The way you jump and the heights you get to are amazing. I can’t believe how active you are. I will ask when you take a cookie from me please stop biting my fingers off! You always act like you are starving to death. I know you can’t be as you eat so much food! I don’t know where you are putting it. Just keep in mind as you get older you will start to gain weight and you will start to look like Freckles and won’t be able to do all that jumping you do!



Gizmo, how do you not get dizzy all the time. Your running in constant circles is insane! I know that your right leg is shorter than you left leg, but I don’t think that would cause you do always move in circles. I think that you might have a disorder, but I’m not sure. You do circles while waiting for a cookie, you do circles before you eat, you do circles before you settle down to sleep, and you do circles when you pee and poop? What is really funny is when you do circles while you are pooping. I always know which is yours as its in a nice circle of drops on the ground. I would love to give you more love, but you really have to come see me more. The food will still be in the pantry you don’t need to guard it all the time.



Pixy, my dirty little dog. I can bath you every day and sometimes 2x a day and you will still be black from the dirt. You are such a small dog, but act like Ginger, Pepper and Nina the Shepherds and Golden lab. You play with them like you are this huge dog. They just love to rub you in the dirt and the mud. So if you could may run faster and escape the big dogs when they put you in their mouth and rub you in the ground that would be great!



Bella, you are the princess as you were Mommy’s 1st pom. You act like the queen, but if you could just be a little nicer to the big dogs that would be great. They only want to lick your face and and your ears. They only want to show you the respect you want. You are the reason we have so many dogs. You were just a little love bug and you were so good and nice that mommy just wanted so many more of you, but that did not happen. So thanks for giving us false idea of what a pom really is. 🙂 You are cute and you are wonderful!

So, to all my dogs we love you and we will work with you to make our life together here in Costa Rica much better! Love and belly rubs!

Pura Vida!


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Open Letter to Costa Rica

Dear Costa Rica,

I wake up in the morning at 5 am, but try to stay in bed until 6 am and then take in your beauty and I am thankful for that which you decided to present to me. It doesn’t matter if you have given me bright sun in my eyes that make me cringe as I pull my head out of the covers, or clouds that will bring rain. You bring something beautiful to me each day.

After I wake and you are presenting to me rain that my dogs will go out and play in and track mud all over the house and on the furniture and even me, I do wonder about your wisdom, but I understand that you must water yourself in order to bring that beauty to me each day.

Could you ask some of your creatures like the cane toads, snakes, tarantulas, and scorpions to see shelter in other areas and not in my yard or house that I share with my 10 dogs. They are a handful in and of themselves and well your wonderful and totally needed creatures do make it more of a challenge for me. So if you could direct them in another direction I would greatly appreciate it!

Oh and while I have you can I just say I can’t wait to explore more of you. You really are a super model of countries in the entire world. If I do say so myself I would rank you as the #1 super model!

Thanks for being who you are and all your wonders and challenges you bring to me every day I am thankful! Keep up the good work and we will talk again soon!

Pura Vida!

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VIDEO: Vegetable oil bus stalled in San José

Pura Vida!


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So a little vacation

I am back and will start to post again. Just needed a little break. Still looking for some active writers who want to help out. Thanks!

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Way to good not to share!

I know nothing to do with Costa Rica, but sometimes you just gotta share!

Pura Vida!


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Its Doggie day here on Best of Costa Rica!

Pura Vida!

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Real value? Let…

Real value? Let’s see… I gave away my Rolex to my oldest grandson, gave away my boat to my adopted son and his family, gave away my hunting gear and rifles to my younger brother and his son to pass on to my younger grandchildren, gave away my suburban to my adopted son and his family… What is real value? A wife who supports you through good and bad times; a dog that only wants the tennis ball; neighbors who appreciate you living next door.

Frank Gould ask this question, “Question for the day for those still awake, what is missing of real value in Costa Rica that you had in Canada, the US or Europe? Really good pastry does not count.” 

The quote was taken from a Facebook group and I think it really says it all! Posted by Pat Joffrion! Thanks Pat! 

Pura Vida!


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Top 10 reason I picked Costa Rica


As of late people have been asking me why did I pick Costa Rica. So i have come up with my top 10 reasons I picked Costa Rica out of all the other places in the world to retire to.

1. Weather – Back in the Old country as I like to call it, Maryland we had extreme weathers. In our summer it would be 100+ with 95+ humidity. In the winter we would get below 0 temperatures, snow as deep as I am tall and ice! Oh by the Gods ice! Horrible. Here are two chats that kind of says it all about he weather really. Why wouldn’t someone want to live. Now this is Westminster Maryland where I lived and Atenas Costa Rica where I live now. Other areas and charts will look different. Costa Rica has so many climates within miles of each other. 🙂 So you can pick an choose without going far from where you want to be.  

Maryland Weather 2013

Maryland Weather 2013

Atenas Costa Rica 2013

Atenas Costa Rica 2013

2.Healthcare – I have only had a couple experiences so far and they have all been good. Check out this blog (Toto we are not in Kansas any more) I did on my experience with Cima hospital and the associated costs. Healthcare here is a fraction of what it is in the state. There are some complaints about the Caja, but I have also heard some really good stories about it. Yes if you have an elective surgery that isn’t an emergency you can wait a very long time to get it taken care of. This video explains a lot about the healthcare system. Getting up in age this was a major factor. Medical Tourism is very big here and it is growing each and every day. People are coming from all over the world to have procedures done. 


3. People – They have been the best. I have never heard a bad word. They are polite and pleasant. They have always been helpful to us with anything we need. Now there are bad people just like everywhere, but the people we have had dealings with have been wonderful to us! Check out my post Just say no? I don’t think so! for an example. 🙂 

4. Lifestyle – It is very laid back, and slow. I love that! In the States I was running around like a chicken with my head cut off. I never stopped to smell the roses. I didn’t have time for anything. Here it is very tranquil and easy. Check out this post on Pura Vida for a much better example. 

5. Beauty of the land – Everywhere you go there is beauty. Even in the dry season you can find something beautiful to look at. The sunset, the ocean, the mountains, the volcanoes. You name it and it is so pretty here. Oh by the Gods when the rainy season comes and everything comes to life! The green is such a green I have never seen. The flowers just seem to bloom all year long. Rainy season or dry season they just seem to thrive. Its just beautiful here! You have to see it 1st hand to experience it fully. You can check out some of the wonderful beauty by clicking on the Categories tap and select photo and it will bring up all our photo’s of the day that we post every day!

6. Fun things to do – Where else can you go on a zip line, than see a volcano, soak in a hots spring, than visit a butterfly sanctuary all in one day. So much to do and so many places to do it at. Costa Rica has just about everything anyone can want to do. Scuba, rock climbing, nature preserves. We have been here over a year and still have not done all the stuff we really want to do. Granted we are living life, but there is so much it is going to take us a long time to do everything and see everything! You can’t stay for less than 10 days in order to get in enough stuff that you can say you truly sampled what Costa Rica has to offer.  Once you have you will just want to keep coming back! 

7. Cost of living – You will hear people say, “Oh it is so expensive here. It wasn’t like this 10 years ago!” Well guess what people it wasn’t like this 10 o 20 years ago ANYWHERE!!!!!! Cost of living increases each year. Nothing you can really do about that, but the cost to live here vs in the states is much lower. I’ve done two pieces so far on the cost of living comparisons. I’m working on more and will release them as I get them done. Here are links to the two that I have done so far. Housing and Groceries

8. Property value – The property values here in Costa Rica are rising. So if you want to buy get it now! Go to our friends at Remax and start looking for a place now. More and more people are moving here and when you have a population explosion housing prices go up! Overall the costs is nothing compared to other places around the world. You can get a wonderful 3 bedroom 3 bathroom home with a pool and a wonderful views for under $150K. You can find houses for rent like this for $500 a month. Where in the US can you find a 3 bedroom 2 bathroom and a pool for $500 a month? 

9. The view – Everywhere there is a wonderful view! Ocean view, Mountain views. You can’t turn around without seeing a wonderful view. Yes if you are in the heart of a city the view may not be so wonderful unless you know where to look. All the towns have the most beautiful churches and some wonderful parks. You can’t beat the view here! You just can’t! You can see some of them by going to the categories menu and select photo and it will bring up our Photo of the day posts! I think you will enjoy them a great deal! 

10. The energetic feel of it is hard to explain. You step off the plane and it just feels good. You drive around town and you just feel good. You visit the beach and it just feels good. You take a drive to a mountain peek and look over the whole of Costa Rica and is just feels good. I love the energy of the land and I love the feel of everything here. Its like being wrapped up in your mothers arms and being held tight. 

So that will do it. These are my top ten reasons I moved to Costa Rica. How abut you share yours with us as well in the comments section so others can see!

Pura Vida!


Categories: Costa Rica Life Experience, Healthcare, Travel, YouTube | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Nicaragua in 3 hours – 23 hours later

I did this trip a long time ago and haven’t done it again and I am glad I was not on this one. I am diabetic and if I didn’t have my meds or my cpap there could have been huge issues! I will be posting another situation with this group in the next couple of days. One that didn’t turn out so well for a few.

Just Costa Rica

We had read about it on the ¿Que Pasa Grecia? website,our local source and resource for all things Gringo. Quick VISA renewal run: take a chartered flight with Blue Wing International  to San Juan de Nicaragua, have lunch at the Rio Indio Lodge, and return three hours later to get your coveted 90-day visa stamp and remain legal (or in our case, to keep our U.S. drivers’ licenses valid) in Costa Rica.

That sounded like fun! Everything except the entry and exit fees for both countries was included in the $225.00 per person price. So we decided to take this route for a change.

The charter plane’s capacity was 15 people. We scored the last two seats for the April 12 run. The scheduled departure time from Tobias Bolanos International Airport in Pavas was 7:00 AM, back at Pavas by 12:00 PM. But a couple…

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5 Top things Costa Rican Restaurants need to know

no inconsistency

In the wake of last night dinner and a friend making the suggestion to create a post about the top things Restaurants in Costa Rica need to know that they are doing wrong!

  1. INCONSISTENCY!!!!!! Yes please just say no! This if you listen to nothing else I say can save your Restaurant. Everything you serve should come out the same every time. If you salad calls for cucumbers, lettuce, tomatoes and onions. Make sure that is what it has on it every time. How do you combat this? Keep a recipe for every item listed on you menu. Say what you do and do what you say! Keep things measured. If one day your plate has 6oz of beef on it and the next there is only 4oz you will lose a customer or two or more when they talk to their friends or write a blog seen by hundreds  of people a day all over the world!  For the love of all that is the Food Gods if you have it on your menu be sure you have it at every service! Telling a customer you are out is bad! Yes it happens sometimes, but it shouldn’t always happen. Offer a discount on another option. They will lover you for it!
  2. Service believe it or not can actually make your restaurant a success even if you just have ok food and prices. A great wait staff that knows what they are doing, is attentive, knows when to play with the customer and when to leave them alone is golden! A glass should never go empty unless the customer says so. There should never be a dirty dish on the table. You should not have to ask for salt, pepper, napkins, or for gods sake silverware. You are in the service industry and you need to stand out above the rest! If a customer asks a question about a menu item you server should not have to run and go check for you. They should know the menu in and out.
  3. Price for Quality is again a big point and one of the hardest points for a restaurant to control. You are not going to pull the wool over a customers eyes buy charging more and serving less. I like most, but not all customers are willing to pay a little more if #1 and #2 are there and the quality of the food being served is there as well. In Costa Rica local fruits and veggies are the cheapest anywhere. You should be shopping and looking for those bargains. If you are selling a $12 salad it better be one amazing salad! If your steak dinner is $30 you better have over 8oz of meat and it better be tender and juicy. Don’t be greedy. Higher prices will kill your business. Restaurants thrive on repeat business not the one timers. If your price for the quality is way too high that is all you are going to get is one timers.
  4. Presentation of the food is the cherry on top of the Sunday. If what you are serving looks like you just slopped it on a plate it tells the customer you really don’t care. If you don’t care whey should they care to come back. I’m not talking big and fancy and swirls and stacks that like like you created a master piece, but something presentable. It should be neat and organized on the plate. There should be room and space for people to cut their food without it falling off the plate. This doesn’t mean give them less. See #3 it means get new plates! If it doesn’t look appetizing it may not be appetizing!
  5. Cleanliness is that which binds all these things together and makes you THE RESTAURANT to go to.  The tables should be neat and in order and bused. See #2. Utensils, floors, counters, etc should be clean. Here is a big tip! Bathrooms need to be clean, orderly and functional! Nothing will turn off a customer faster and have them not return than a bathroom that is disgusting. If that is  how you keep the bathroom, the customer is going to wonder how do you keep your kitchen! I have been to places where there is no running water to wash your hands, no toilet seats, no paper towels.

So in summary Good food, good service, good prices, good presentation, and a clean place will keep your customers coming back time and time again. They will also tell their friends who will tell theirs. People will blog your praises to hundreds of views a day all over the world! So please restaurant owners of Costa Rica heed my words and take care. You never know who is there and what reach they have to either praise you or bury you in the sand!

Want to turn your restaurant around? Email  me at I would be happy to come in and evaluate (not review) your place and help you to make it the best place in town!

Pura Vida!

Don’t forget to check out our Cafe Press shop! $3 of every item purchased goes to Charities here in Costa Rica. Also check out our House for Saleand Rent listings as well!  If you are traveling and you want a cheap $4.99 a month and good VPN so you can watch hulu, your countries Netflix, and amazon click here. Good for travel or if you live here in Costa Rica. Don’t forget about our Amazon shop as well!


Categories: Food, Restaurant Reviews, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The True Meaning of Pura Vida

I opened my inbox one day to find an email with a peculiar subject line.  “Congratulations, you have won a trip to Anamaya Yoga Retreat in sunny Costa Rica”.  I promptly deleted it but a nagging feeling prompted me to retrieve that email and read it again to be sure it was, in fact, just another scam.  Four months after I reread that email, I boarded a plane for San Jose, Costa Rica. A long drive through the countryside that led to a ferry that took me across the gulf of Nicoya and onto the small Pacific Coast village of Montezuma was the beginning of an unforgettable journey…one that taught me an important lesson in life and in living it to the fullest.

There wasn’t much going on at Anamaya Yoga Retreat on my 4th day in Montezuma, Costa Rica.  I developed a routine of waking early, watching the sunset, reading in the hammock, taking a dip in the infinity pool and checking emails all before breakfast was even served. On this day, I decided to break the routine and do something a little different.   I didn’t want to waste the day sitting by the pool so I strolled down the hill into the village and spent the day exploring the little streets and surf shops and enjoying the beach.  The village had so much energetic ambiance.  Smiling, energetic people of all walks of life, embracing the day and one another.  I can still feel that ambiance now if I close my eyes and bring myself back there.

It was the hottest morning in Montezuma since I’d arrived and the walk down the hill was torture.  I was only half way down the hill when a young man on a motorbike stopped.   “Senorita, I take you to bottom of the hill if you like.”  He was wearing a nice shirt and khaki shorts which gave him an air of coolness and confidence – like he often picked up strange women who were about to pass out while walking down that hill.  I usually don’t take rides from strangers but I didn’t think I was going to make it any further without collapsing. I took him up on his offer and a few minutes later he dropped me off at the beach.  With a wave and a friendly “Buenos dias”, he sped off.


I walked a few feet to the beach and plopped myself down in the sand in a shaded area and relaxed for a bit.  A storm had passed near Montezuma the previous night and the water was extremely rough.  I tried to go for a swim but the waves were too powerful and the undertow too dangerous.  The smell of Cerviche and Empanadas in the restaurant a few meters away filled the air.  The sounds of palm trees rustling in the gentle breeze and locals and tourists going about their daily business lulled me.  A dog chased a stick nearby while some children egged him on.  A stray cat sat near a food cart, waiting for a hand-out.  The rhythmic sound of the waves coming ashore, like a lullaby, gently rocked me to sleep.

Shouting zapped me out of my trance to see people on the beach pointing to something in the water; some brave, fool-hardy surfers were attempting to surf dangerously rough waters close to some jagged rocks.  It looked like the scene might end in tragedy but, fortunately, the surfers made it safely to shore.  Welcome to Costa Rica – home of adventure seekers, lovers of life and daredevils!


By late-morning, the heat was really getting to me and I started to feel dehydrated.  I was craving a refreshing fruit smoothie but didn’t want to pay the going rate of about 7 dollars for one at a tourist trap.  So off I went, up and down those little streets, in search of a reasonably-priced smoothie.  At the end of a side street, I noticed an interestingly-decorated, outdoor smoothie bar.  The thatched-roof and colorful plants sprouting from the walls caught my eye.  It looked like just my kind of place!

A free-spirited and friendly, young man was eager to take on the challenge of making me something that was refreshing but not-too-sweet.  It took a long time for him to make it as he carefully thought out each ingredient and made sure it was mixed to perfection by allowing me to taste it at intervals.  After some mixing and shaking and adding of various exotic fruit, some of which I never heard of, he placed his finished masterpiece before me.  For the price of 3 dollars, I received a delicious, orange-colored smoothie in a massive glass.

I stayed at the bar and took a seat.  “So, are you from around here?” I asked him.  “Yes, born and raised in Costa Rica, just down the road a little bit.”  He obviously loved his life in Montezuma and at one point, he asked if I knew what “Pura Vida” meant.  To me “Pura Vida” meant The Pure Life and it was what I had witnessed over and over again while traveling through the country.  Natural, untouched, simple and pure.  He went on to explain it in more depth for me. “That is how most people interpret it.  You see, ‘Pura Vida’ can be a greeting, a state of mind, a way of life.  You meet someone walking down the street, you say ‘Pura Vida’.  You catch the perfect wave while surfing, you say ‘Pura Vida’.  You have a wonderful day, instead of saying goodnight, you say ‘Pura Vida’.  You find a great smoothie bar while walking the streets of Montezuma, you say ‘this is Pura Vida’.  It can mean anything but always something good.  Anytime something good happens, “Pura Vida” is the appropriate thing to say.”  Made sense to me.  How can you not be living the “Pura Vida” in a country that is considered to be one of the happiest in the world according to the Happy Planet Index?


It was mid-afternoon when I started walking up that steep hill to Anamaya.  I made it to the top without collapsing in the ditch.  There was still enough daylight left to hike to Montezuma Falls.  I had gone there the day before and chickened out of jumping off the falls into the pool below but now I was determined not to leave Costa Rica without taking that plunge.

The path to the falls was steep and rocky.  I stopped to take a rest mid-way down the trail and that is when I became fully aware of my surroundings.  The growling of nearby howler monkeys, the buzz of millions of tropical insects, the sound of the distant waves crashing onto the beach below, the trees rustling in the gentle breeze.  The rainforest sounded so alive. It was like the forest itself was living and breathing.

I made it to the waterfalls and again, paused to take in the beautiful sight before me.  Beautiful, cascading water falling into a crystal clear, blue pool beneath a canopy of thick rainforest.  Before I could talk myself out of it again, I took the leap into the clear, refreshing water.  If there is one thing I absolutely hate, it is missed opportunity.  I take every chance that comes my way because, sometimes, you only get one chance to do something.  And to think, if I had not listened to that little voice in my head telling me to read that email again, I would have missed out on the time of my life and would never know what it is like to live the Pura Vida.


Categories: Andrea MacEachern, Travel, Writers | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Spanish names for Cuts of Meat!

This will come in handy! I know I will be using it next time. Although my butcher speaks English, so but you never know. Always good to have!

This was posted byt Ninfa DePalma on a facebook group. 

Spanish meat cuts

Pura Vida!


Categories: Costa Rica Life Experience, Food, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Boomerang Lessons, How My Kids Inspire Me

Great Story!!!


“Boomerang lesson” is the term I’ve decided to start using for things I tell my kids that I need to pay attention to myself; in other words, listen to yourself speak, Heather, you might learn something. This past Sunday we ran a 5k race with our two oldest children, our 13-year old boy and 10-year old girl. It was a charity run for the Children’s Museum here in San Jose, my husband ran with our son and I ran with our daughter. Our kids are athletic and, despite the fact that if we let them they would immerse themselves for hours in electronics, they really enjoy being active. Since the time they were pretty young our kids could hike for miles and miles, the hubby and I are not parents who would push a 5-year old in a stroller–move forward and push on are lessons our kids learned early…

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Ripped from the headlines: Unidentified man devoured by crocodiles after jumping from a bridge over the Tárcoles River, Red Cross says



Update, Wednesday, April 30, 2014: Search continues for missing man eaten by crocodiles in Costa Rica

Conflicting reports continue about how the man entered the water, but he has been identified as 32-year-old Nicaraguan Omar de Jesús Jirón. See above link for details.

Update, Thursday, May 1, 2014: Human head found in Costa Rica river likely belongs to Nicaraguan man attacked by crocodiles

Clothing recovered at the scene has led officials to say victim likely entered the river from the shore, but witnesses on the bridge still claim Jirón jumped. 

Original story continues here:

An unidentified man leapt from the main bridge over the Tárcoles River, near Costa Rica’s central Pacific coast, on Tuesday evening at approximately 5:20 p.m. in what is believed to be a suicide, Jim Batres, assistant director for the Costa Rican Red Cross, told The Tico Times.

After falling into the water, the man reportedly was eaten by the river’s famously abundant crocodiles.

Citing the testimonies of unidentified witnesses at the scene, Batres said the man had been causing a disturbance on the bridge earlier in the evening and was removed by police. He then went to a bar before returning to the bridge and leaping into the river.

Batres said the man’s identity could not immediately be confirmed, and members of a Red Cross search team were unable to recover the body as of 7:50 p.m. Tuesday night.

conflicting report in the daily La Nación said the victim did not jump from the bridge, but tried to swim in the river from the shore when he was attacked by a crocodile and disappeared. The report said a friend identified him as a Nicaraguan named Omar, but gave no last name.

Situated on the highway between San José and the popular beach town Jacó, the bridge over the Tárcoles River has become a popular pit stop for tourists looking to catch a glimpse of the river’s many American crocodiles. Recently, photographers and tour guides have grown more adventurous, filling up YouTube with videos of Tárcoles croc feedings and near misses.

Updated 8:28 p.m.

This story is developing. Follow for updates.

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Life in Costa Rica: “Just say No? I don’t think so!”

just say no

Recently a friend was in the car with me and said something that made me think. He said, “Costa Rican’s don’t like to say no!” So I thought about it. I can’t remember a single time in the last 14 months that I have been here that any Costa Rican or Tico (male) Tica (female) as they are called here,  has said no to me. Not sure how I feel about that. Can you be so polite and accommodating that you can never ever say “NO”? Is this possible to live this way? If I asked a Tico to do something that he doesn’t know how to do what will he/she do? They won’t say no or sorry I can’t do that. They will say, “No problem” They will than go and find a friend, relative, or even a stranger who knows how to do it and bring them on. Now that I think about it that has happened a number of times with me on the various projects I have had done around the house. Its like every Tico can do everything, with a little help from someone else sometimes. I will give you an example.

I have a guy who was referred to me to do some electrical work around the house. He came with a friend and they looked and said, “No problem we can fix that for you.” I have to admit they did a great job. I was told they were both electricians. So needed some other things done so I asked, “Do you know someone who can weld? My gate hinges need to be fixed.” his response was, “Sure we can do that no problem.” We work out a price and a time to come back and sure enough they fix it. OK this seems to be working out well so I say, “My house needs to be sanded and refinished. All the windows and doors do you happen to know someone?” Again he says to me, “Sure no problem we can do that.” Again work out a price and date they come back and this time there are 5 of them and the work gets done. Great job was done at that. So again I ask, “I have some plumbing issues know anyone?” He responds, “Yep we can do that.” So again he shows up with someone new and fixes the plumbing issues. So my last example is, “I am having a party do you know anyone who can BBQ, bar tend, and do karaoke?” His response and I bet you can guess what it is, “No problem I can do that.” So we work out a price and he shows up with a Bar tender, he cooks the food, a waitress, and a guy to run the music.

So I am thinking they really don’t like to say no. Each time he did a great job. I used him for many other things and each time I ask he said, “No problem”. It was no problem. He was good, fast, effective and not overly priced.

I always ask friend who they use and so far it has not been a bad experience for me. I have heard many horror stories from people who have hired people who said yes to everything and just really screwed it all up. So I know I have been very blessed to have round 2 guys who have done great jobs for me.

Now here is the problem. I have had 2 guys like this now. Why? Well something happens and you can no longer get in touch with them. Their number changes, they move, all sorts of reasons. Its a shame when you find someone who can find anyone to do what you need to do for a good price and good quality of work. So you can’t get in touch with them and more and  you have to go and find another guy, and I can bet you this guy won’t tell you No either no matter what task you ask him to do.

This is one of the many things I love and not so love about this country and its people. Elliot if you are out there and reading this call me. 🙂

Pura Vida!


Categories: Costa Rica Life Experience | Tags: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

When a bee and a butterfly feed on the tears of a crocodile

Very Cool!

boldcorsicanflame's Blog


This very patient caiman leaves a bee and a butterfly sucking her tears for a quarter of an hour to Costa RicaAccording to researchers, the sodium content in tears carnivores attracts insects who need for their development.

This is an original trio Carlos de la Rosa and his team had the chance to observe on the banks of the Rio Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica: an alligator lounging on a tree trunk while a butterfly ( Dryas iulia) and a bee (Centris sp.) drink her tears. 

caiman_bee_butterfly“This is one of those moments of natural history that one day we hope to observe closely,” said Carlos de la Rose, director of La Selva Biological Station, specializing in the study of tropical areas. The biologist, students and photographers navigate the Puerto Viejo River in northeastern Costa Rica, when they see the caiman and two insects. 

“I learned that you should always have a…

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