Hey Everyone –
Well it’s been a few weeks since the first post, so I thought I’d give a little update on what’s going on with us. As of today we are exactly one month away from moving to Costa Rica. Our flights, shipping, and housing has all been arranged. At this point we just have to get some paperwork here apostilled (an international form of notarization), some packing done, and we will be all set. Everything is falling into place rather nicely, and we’ve already started planning our first beach mini-vacation. We’re going to be in the country for a little over three weeks before school starts, and we didn’t get to take much of a honeymoon after our wedding, so we’re going to have a little getaway once we get settled. The plan is to spend a few days in the Quepos/ Manuel Antonio National Park area.
Over the last six months, I think I’ve read every blog post and informational website ever written by or for expats living in Costa Rica. While I doubt it can really prepare us for the culture shock I am sure we will experience, all the research has given us an idea about what to expect. These other blogs have been fun to read and huge resources for us. Based on what we’ve read here are some things the we’re a bit nervous about and some things we are excited about:
Stuff that makes us wonder, “What the heck are we getting ourselves into?!”:
1. The language. Yeah, kind of big one. People have tried to reassure us by saying things like, “Oh, I went there on a cruise – everyone speaks English anyway.” Well, I am sure at a cruise port many people do. We, however, are not living near a major port nor any other major tourist destination. We are close to San Jose, but people don’t vacation there. Torie is a bit more confident in our skills than I am, but we are getting better.
2. Getting around. We won’t have a car there because the are outrageously priced in Costa Rica, and we’ve been told it’s not a necessity where we will be living. School is within walking distance, and we will live a short walk to two different bus stops. From what I’ve read, the buses in Costa Rica are cheap and go everywhere – sounds great. Bus stops, though, are not usually marked and bus drivers will speak Spanish. I am sure we will figure out the bus routes before too long, but it will be an adventure getting anywhere at first I am sure.
Now, for some things we are excited about!
1. Our school. The school where we will be teaching sounds awesome – VERY small class sizes top the list of things to be excited about here!
2. Our house. If you haven’t seen them, check out the pictures of our casa in the previous post. We’re excited to get out of the apartment and live in such an awesome house.
3. Learning Spanish. This is also our top source of fear, but it’s also an awesome opportunity for us. Our goal is to learn as much as possible while we are there. It won’t be easy, but it will be a rewarding experience once we can confidently carry on a conversation with someone in Spanish.
4. The rest. This list could go on and on because there are definitely more things to be excited about than worried about at this point such as the local ferias (farmers markets) where fresh produce is cheap, living so close to rain forests, volcanoes, and beautiful beaches… Like I said I could go on for a while about this part, but I’ll stop there.
Being totally immersed in a new culture is sure to bring its ups and downs, but we’re expecting plenty more of the ups than downs, and we can’t wait to get started!
If you haven’t done so, be sure to follow “For an Adventure”! Look on the right side of the page for the place to enter your email address, and you will get a notification whenever we post!