Where I am right now.

I’ve been here in El Cajon de Grecia, Costa Rica, for 6 weeks now.  Hard to believe, really, if I think about it…  but it all seems pretty natural – so far, anyway.  Eating a more healthy diet, hiking, walking, living more naturally (no doing my hair or makeup these days, unless going out for lunch/dinner with friends, and even then WAY less maintenance than before)… it all just FEELS good.  People talk about culture shock, which is a very real thing, and I read up on it a few times before our move here, feeling I was very “prone” to this.  Anytime there is a change in my life (good or bad) – it seems I have a bit of “culture shock” (for lack of a better term)… a bit of stumbling around for a while, till I get back into a schedule and feel comfortable with things again.  So, I admit, I have had a couple of bad days (1st time was on day #3 after seeing a scorpion and a roach right in a row, followed shortly thereafter by the truly bad news of Greg’s dad passing away).  I do realize I’ve only been here 6 weeks, and according to Wikipedia, Culture Shock (which consists of several stages – kind of like a grieving process or a 12 step program) doesn’t really set in until after living in a different country for 3 months(!).   So come Oct. 1st, I guess I have a lot to look forward to – especially since the WHOLE month of October is supposed to be the worst of the rainy season (people say it can rain ALL day EVERY day).

In any case, let’s not rush things along – getting back to here and now…  it really helps to have a very understanding and cool husband – we talk through things, he listens to me if I need to rant about something, and we always just seem to be on the same page about things (and I’m not just saying this, those of you who know Greg KNOW how cool of a guy he is).


He’s so cool, that he lets me take pictures of him ALL the time, even though he really hates it… 🙂

We also did a lot of research ahead of time about what to expect here – the good and the bad…  so I think that has really helped, knowing that we would NOT have all the “super conveniences” of the North American lifestyle, and oddly enough – that came to be one of the things we really looked forward to.  NOT eating out every day.  NOT eating fast food or junk food.  NOT being able to afford (with our new budget) soda and pre-packaged food, which is all imported here.  When we lived in that states, there was really no excuse for our unhealthy ways, but it was just so much EASIER to eat horribly, and we did.  These days local foods are my friend – and I’m really enjoying that.  And hey – I have TIME now to prepare food, and cut up fruits and vegetables.

In Dallas, eating out frequently – very unhealthy:


In Costa Rica, healthy eating almost all the time:


Also the view is so much cooler here in Costa Rica, wherever we go.  Oh, and I did I mention the temp’s?  60’s at night to 80’s during the day – SOO much better than Big D in the summer.

Our very tiny backyard in Dallas, all fenced in: computers out back

View now from our backyard in Costa Rica:



Also my days now are NOT filled with running around (by car) on a hot Saturday in Dallas from one errand to the next, hoping I can fit all my errands into one weekend and still have time to relax and do something fun.  Nowadays – I don’t have too many errands, except grocery shopping and the farmer’s market – but hey, those are fun things, and I have all week to do them!  I still have goals and things I want to work on, but now I have time to do these things – along with enjoying so much more in life  –  nature, beauty, my husband…  I must say, after we made up our minds about this move, there was something VERY freeing about selling our 2 vehicles, our house, and all our possessions.  Yes, life is much more simpler here, and not everyone would appreciate that, but I do.  I like it.   Very much.  So far.  I’ll get back to you in October and let you know how I’m doing.

That’s all for now, folks – peace out! – JenJen


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15 Responses to Where I am right now.

  1. Jen, loved your article this morning. We have all gone through the very same feelings, we are here over 1 year now. As for the rainy season, make sure you are well stocked with reading materials, books, etc. Where is the picture taken of the pool scene??? OMG that is absolutely gorgeous. Marlene & Caryn

  2. Really enjoy your post Jen my wife and I are coming in November our plan is to try to move there in five years keep up the great writing I really appreciate it.

  3. We have been here for 6 mos. Lake Arenal. Also from the Dallas area. (Trophy Club) Do not miss that traffic or life! Pura Vida!

  4. Hi Jen: I’m so glad to hear you are enjoying eating and living a healthier diet. Once that becomes a habit there’s no going back and you are probably adding years to your lives by cutting out the junk food. Congratulations!

    • Hahaha – aren’t those mugs cute? I have them still in the state’s – another thing I want to bring here in October. 🙂 Oh – AWESOME to know on the 7 mo’s and no shock ever – that’s very good to know!!

  5. I just subscribed to your blog and I enjoyed reading through your posts. My family will be moving to CR this next summer. We are very excited about this move and love to hear from people who have done it. We just started a blog as well that documents all we’re going through to make this big adventure happen. If you want to check it out it’s at http://www.thegrindtoticotime.com. Thanks for writing about your experiences. Info like this is so helpful.

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