Thursday, March 02, 2006

Things I miss (or will miss) Costa Rica, Portland OR, and New Zealand

I've been thinking a lot about Costa Rica and the things I like and don't like about living in Central America.

1. I will miss speaking and hearing spanish on a regular basis. Living with another language is challenging on a daily basis. Go out to eat? You have to translate. Pay a bill? You have to speak spanish. Nope, can't send it via mail.

2. I will not miss standing in line to pay the utility bills. You stand in line for everything. I've learned to take a book or magazine everywhere just in case I have to wait.

3. I will miss smiling, dancing, happy people, genuinely happy people. Coming from Portland there are a lot of transplants from other cities in the United States. They say people are just nicer and friendlier in Portland. Well the 'happy' people in Portland don't hold a candle to the happy Ticos. I was in the supermarket yesterday and I saw four people either dancing or singing. Yes people here bust out in dance or songs because they are happy. Two of those people were stock boys. No sarcastic teenage ankst here. I've been in a dozen or so taxis where the drivers will just bust out a latin serinade just for you. How can you not smile and be happy here.

4. I miss my motorcycle. I have a Suzuki GS 500, but I'm hoping to upgrade in New Zealand. There are a lot of people on motorcycles here, but IMHO it is too dangerous for motorcycle here, especially with the mean drivers.

5. I will not misss the mean drivers here in Costa Rica. I swear, the Ticos turn into Dr. Jeckyl and Hide. They are nice dancing singing folk, but when they get behind the wheel they will run you over in a heart beat. I will not miss the transporation system here.

6. I miss the great restaurants of Portland. I miss Milo's for breakfast, Pizza A Go-Go for lunch with real NYC style crust, and I miss a dozen other of my favorite restaurants for dinner. I hope New Zealand can live up to Portland restaurants.

7. I MISS GOOD BEER! Portland has so many great breweries.

8. I don't miss the 15lbs I've lost since moving to Costa Rica. Not many restaurants or beer to temp me. The most fun we have going out for food is the Plaza Viquez Saturday market with so many different types of cheap, fresh local produce.

9. I miss my Portland friends and will miss my new Costa Rican friends. So many friendly people!

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