I no longer make resolutions specifically for the new year. After all, you can decide to do something better for yourself any time, not just on January 1. I have found, however, that making resolutions or reaching goals of any kind is easier in Costa Rica. Whether it's for the mind, body, or soul.
Here in Panama we've been easing into our "dry" or summer season. Though we really do get sunny weather all year, January through March are particularly glorious on the Pacific Coast and in the mountains. It's a wonderful time to explore the great outdoors in Panama, whether you're living here or just down for a visit.
In the U.S., before we go on a trip, we're accustomed to going shopping so we can look our best, perhaps purchasing new dresses, luggage, etc. You actually need to prepare for the opposite here.
Less than two hours on the ground in my new "home," I started to get panicky. I had sold almost everything I owned and cared about and packed the rest of my belongings into two suitcases and a shoulder bag. And now I couldn't even breathe!
Mark, 62, and Bonnie, 60, recently filled their outdoor pool and Jacuzzi for the first time, and although there are still a few small touches to be made to the paving and planting, it’s already a luxurious place to lounge away an afternoon in the Ecuadorian sunshine.
The first person to drive me around Quepos, Costa Rica when I moved here two years ago was Chip Braman. A silver-haired, tan-skinned, distinguished gentleman who looks much younger than his 72 years, Chip moved to the Quepos and Manuel Antonio area on the central Pacific coast 18 years ago from Connecticut.
Living in a foreign country has its challenges—any expat will tell you that. Most of us downsize when we move to Costa Rica. You don't need a lot of "stuff" here. There are some things, however, that you don't want to live without—items that add a little comfort, and essentials you need for survival.
Summer weather in Panama occurs during the months of December through mid-May. During this season, days are sunny, with only a few clouds, and rain is rare. These months coincide with winter in North America. So, the population of Boquete and other areas in Chiriquí swells as tourists and snowbirds visit to get away from the cold.
Renovation and renewal are words that often come up when writing about Ecuador—the country seems to have that effect on expats—but in the case of Dona and Larry Dees, it’s a definite theme. First, their adopted hometown of Ballenita on the ocean-scoured sands of the Pacific has recently put the finishing touches on an ambitious redesign and renovation project.
One of the truly interesting things about moving to a different country is that you don't realize the things you didn't know until you know them. Bananas. I've eaten them my whole life. Getting them is simple—you go to the grocery store, there they are. You buy them and you eat them. End of story.