Nancy's Blog

The house we're renting has been for sale for two years.  It seems that everything in Tamarindo is for sale.

"Don't worry about it," the property manager said. "Things take forever here, and even if it does sell, the new owners will want the guananteed  income of a long term tenant."  So in July, we negotiated the deal, signed the lease, and put down our money.

The day we arrived, however, it appears that the house sold.  We are being asked to move.  Its high season now, the likelihood of finding an acceptable house at a reasonable price virtually impossible.

An army of people were here yesterday after Gary’s strident email to the property management company outlining our security concerns.  They were supposed to come back at noon today to start making repairs...

Eventually I walked to town in quest of having documents printed and my eyebrows waxed.  Since I had wasted the morning waiting for repair people who didn’t show, it was about eight thousand degrees with a hot wind and a lot of dust by the time I headed out the door.  I went first to Mr. Tom’s, the printing guy, where I was out negotiated by the kid at the counter, and then to the eyebrow lady.  

Although she assured me yesterday that she would be there from 8 to 6, she was not.  A guard told me the lady would be there shortly, so I sat down on a bench in the shade.  The heat felt oppressive and I was grateful for the chance to sit when a shopkeeper plunked down next to me and started talking in Spanish at length.  She too said the eyebrow lady would be back -- at least I think that’s what she said.

Eventually, I went to the the SuperCompro for some seriously overpriced groceries, then back in the searing heat to the eyebrow shop and finally home, too sweaty to care about my manlike brows.  Maybe tomorrow.

bigger than barbie

I rose from a sleepless night having endured the incessant clicking of some animal in the ceiling of the master bedroom.  All night the room was intermittently hot, then cold, then hot again with the cooler and fan making not quite enough noise to drown out the scratching animal sounds.  I finally got up and sprinkled five dollars worth of oatmeal into a small pan with milk and water and then made tea.

Lauren was groggy when I went to wake her up saying that she too had had a sleepless night.  I slipped her into a dingy borrowed school uniform and sat her down to breakfast.  She was nervous because today she will ride the school bus for the first time.  My plan was to put her on the bus and then follow behind it in our rental car, assuming the clutch would survive the trip, but when I looked out the window at 6:30, the bus was there.  It was not due 'til 6:53 and I wasn’t ready.   We got her things together and off she went.

The driver and his assistant greeted Lauren by name in English.  We posed for photos, and then with a wrench in my heart, I watched her go.

Five minutes later I emailed her new teacher asking her to confirm Lauren’s arrival at school.

Gary and I looked at each other and the mess in the rooms and wondered how we would spend the day.  Moving slowly, we packed a bag with towels and a snack and headed out the door.  We were hoping to meet the parents of a kid who lived nearby, hoping the kid could be a friend to Lauren and the parents could be friends to us.

We made our way down the dirt road toward the beach and saw a man standing outside his front door.  Gary asked if he was the parent of a little girl, and the guy said that we must be new here.  He proceeded to tell us that the parents of the little girl were cocaine dealers, armed to the teeth and violent.  He said they were at odds with their neighbors and that in fact the two wives had engaged in a physical fight during which one had apparently bitten the other and was subsequently held at gunpoint by police.  He went on to say that our rental house had been robbed many times, adding that the woman next door to us had just been robbed so horrifically that it made news all over Costa Rica.  

He talked without taking a breath for 15 minutes, appalling us with details of neighborhood burglaries.  Then he took us on an abbreviated tour of his home which looked something like a drug dealer’s pleasure palace in the making.  Laborers were sanding down a massive jacuzzi which eventually will accommodate at least 15 people.  Waterfalls were everywhere and a huge bar with a giant sub zero freezer was being installed.  The guy was talking nonstop as Gary and I exchanged glances.

Instead of going to the beach, the Bear and I walked home, somewhat despondent, wondering what our next move would be.

This morning I woke up with an odd sensation in the back of my head.  I kissed Gary and went downstairs, put on the water for tea and crept into Lauren’s dark, cool room.  “Thumbs up for eggs,” I said and watched a sleepy thumb emerge from the covers.  

A few minutes later, Lauren came into the kitchen sleepy but smiling.  I, on the other hand, was gripped with an inexplicable pain.  I whisked the eggs and put some toast down, my body suddenly bathed in sweat.  The eggs went on the plate, some milk in a glass, and me collapsed on the couch.  Gary brought me a huge bowl, the only one in the house, in case I barfed.  he then reminded me that Lauren’s uniform needed a button.  

I felt so weak that the thought of lifting a needle seemed impossible.  The next thing I knew, Gary was attempting to do it himself which would be sort of like me teaching a class in auto mechanics.  He then set off to make Lauren’s sandwich, accidentally spreading yesterday’s leftover oatmeal on a piece of bread instead of the tuna salad I had planned for her.

Lauren eventually scrambled to the bus, and my mysterious illness passed as quickly as it had come.

An hour or so later, Gary and I were out the door, shopping list in hand to prep for our weekend visitors.  We had about an hour before we had to return the rental car to avoid additional charges and flew to the store, my stomach heaving with each lurch of the vehicle, eyes peeled for cows that seem to wonder these roads at liberty.

At the grocery store, I heard my name called.  It was our friend Chad who bears a striking resemblance to our other friend, Jeff.  We met Chad when we were here the last time.  Gary became a member of the AutoMercado savers club, an irony since in the States he is a budget buster at the grocery store.  

Latest comments

20.12 | 00:15

Hi,These are some photos I took. I like to take Self Portraits. I will be taking more pictures of Costa Rica. Thank for your selfy. --

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01.12 | 18:28

Gary's Blog One Last Look Saw the last sunset of our stay tonight.Amazing post...

11.11 | 19:54

Green, or common, iguanas are among the largest lizards in the Americas, averaging around 6.5 feet ...