Thursday, January 27, 2011

Where to LIVE in Costa Rica- the ANSWER

Where to LIVE in Costa Rica, the base of the very active, Arenal Volcano perhaps?

"We want to move to Costa Rica, where should we live?"

"Where's the BEST place to put down roots in Costa Rica?"

"We love Costa Rica and would like to live there some day, particularly on one of the beaches located on the Pacific, northern coast, but do you think it gets too HOT to live year round?"

Hey EVERYONE! We get the "Where should we live in Costa Rica?" question enough that we thought we'd answer it for you.

No need to keep writing, watch the VIDEO, it's all there, and as usual, HOPE it helps.

TONS of Costa Rica Travel Info and VIDEOS on our website: Travel Costa Rica NOW and if you want to visit our YouTube Channel: iCostaRica24 ENjoY!

Monday, January 24, 2011

SHAKEDOWN at the Border! WTF?

I posted this video about 'Corruption and Bribing a Police Officer' in Costa Rica a few weeks ago. If you haven't seen it, it may be worth a look, but in it I mention that I've NEVER in my 5 years of living in Costa Rica been asked by a man in uniform to pay a bribe nor have they ever tried to extort money from me. Well, I can't say that anymore.

We were returning from our trip to Nicaragua and was crossing back over into Costa Rica at the Penas Blancas border crossing. After stamping out of Nicaragua, D'Angelo and our friends decided to hit up the duty free shops and I decided to take the 10 minute walk over to check out how long the line was to get stamped back into Costa Rica. Between the 2 points they have a couple passport checkpoints.

Costa Rica border crossing guard asked to see my passport, nothing out of the ordinary, so I obliged. Then he asked me if I had $5.00. WTF? Before I tell you how I responded and what happened I'd like to add my 2 cents.
"Although I understand the mentality of wanting to travel alone, I highly discourage it and really, it borders on stupidity. Like many things bad, this border crossing guard probably wouldn't have asked if I was with other people... but I digress."

So, he asked me for $5.00 and I responded in true expat spanglish, "What the fuck for, dude............ para que? I know, I know, I have a way with words. Anyway, he said it was for 'admission', and I said, "pa....leeez... que mierda!" it was then he realized I wasn't just any gringo traveler and pretty much dropped it, handed me my passport and I was on my way.

I know I'll take grief for this, but it really doesn't bother me, he tried... and it didn't work. Honestly, didn't even cross my mind to 'report him' or whatever... just not my style. So, that's my encounter with 'corruption' in Costa Rica.

Oh, just in case you're not familiar with the Penas Blancas border crossing, we made this video awhile back on how to do it:

TONS of Costa Rica Travel Info and VIDEOS on our website: Travel Costa Rica NOW and if you want to visit our YouTube Channel: iCostaRica24 ENjoY!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Perpetual Tourist in Costa Rica- the TRUTH

Perpetual Tourists in
Costa Rica need a more efficient way to
cross the border into Nicaragua. The above is just a thought.

Living in Costa Rica as a 'perpetual tourist' is alive and well, at least for the moment anyway.

Not sure what a 'perpetual tourist' is? A 'perpetual tourist' is a person who lives in Costa Rica but does not have legal residence and must leave the country every 90 days in order to keep their visa (passport) current.

It's kind of an accepted loophole if you will and has been going on for many, MANY years. So long in fact, when Costa Rica does change the immigration laws, which they eventually will, there's going to be some SERIOUS backlash since more often than not, perpetual tourists own land, houses and run businesses in Costa Rica, which obviously generates revenue and jobs for Costa Rica.

It's the deadbeat perpetual tourist that give perpetual tourists in general a bad name.

The video below discusses a few issues but the most important thing to remember if you're living in Costa Rica as a 'perpetual tourist' is don't go over your 90 days and never, Never, NEVER hand over your passport because a friend has a friend who knows someone who works at the border and can stamp your passport (for a fee of course)while your lazy ass sits on the beach sipping Cacique.

It also talks about some fairly recent changes at the Penas Blancas border crossing with Nicaragua (and probably Panama as well) which directly effects the perpetual tourist and is 'must know' information.

I want to mention, I'm not suggesting you follow anything I say in the video, I'm merely trying to pass on INFO. As my friend, Bill Clanton, who is the Costa Rica Blogger, and someone I respect pointed out, if you do everything aBOVE board and don't look for the 'easy way', you have a much better chance of receiving residency in the future if you so desire. True indeed.

Anyway, it is what it is:

TONS of Costa Rica Travel Info and VIDEOS on our website: Travel Costa Rica NOW and if you want to visit our YouTube Channel: iCostaRica24 ENjoY!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

bad BAD Girls in La Fortuna Costa Rica

La Fortuna, Costa Rica, where some underage girls have visions of making the EASY money.

Girls in La Fortuna, Costa Rica can be SO BOLD!

I saw the text messages the girl in the video below sent to the guy, although paraphrased and not the EXACT message, it's pretty damn close:
"If you can't get the $100. to me by Monday, then it will be $150. on Wednesday. Understand?"
WTF? This girl is 17-years old, blackmailing like she's a pro. WOW!

Like I say in the video, I don't know what this guy didn't or didn't do, I just know the girl didn't go to the proper authorities if she did in fact believe he had done something inappropriate.

My personal opinion but TOTALLY speculative- I would say he flirted with her, made suggestive comments and she probably encouraged him to some degree, maybe even instigated it, who's to say, and then when things went south for whatever reason, she decided to try and make some easy money by threatening him. But again- I don't know shit. After all, he could be a BIG perv, she could be an underage skank, or a combination of both, or none of the above, who knows.

Anyway, I don't want to make too much of this, but here's how it all went down one afternoon in our tiny little tourist town of La Fortuna, Costa Rica. Oh, the drama.

*Just in case you're not sure, the guy went to the FBI himself and that's how this sting came about in the first place.

TONS of Costa Rica Travel Info and VIDEOS on our website: Travel Costa Rica NOW and if you want to visit our YouTube Channel: iCostaRica24 ENjoY!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Just ANSWER the question PLEASE!

There may be no STUPID Questions, but there sure can be some SKETCHY answers.

The FACT is, most of you already know what I'm about to tell you. But it also seems to be true that it's quickly forgotten when you need to remember it the most.

Here's how it goes:

You ask your (Fill in the Blank) Costa Rica tour operator, taxi driver, waiter, bartender, travel agent, friendly gringo next to you in the restaurant, whoever for INFO regarding anything- BEST restaurant in the area, best tour company, where to go, what to do, something about buying real estate in Costa Rica etc. I'm sure you get the picture.

Nine times out of ten their answer has AGENDA written all over it.

We made this video so you would remember to file away this little tidbit of INFO in the back of your brain somewhere when you're traveling around Costa Rica.

Hope it helps:

TONS of Costa Rica Travel Info and VIDEOS on our website: Travel Costa Rica NOW and if you want to visit our YouTube Channel: iCostaRica24 ENjoY!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Shark Finning ALIVE and WELL in Costa Rica

Shark finning and Costa Rica are synonymous.

Costa Rica and shark finning, shark finning and Costa Rica... whenever someone mentions shark finning, Costa Rica's name is not far behind... that is NOT a good thing in case you don't know.

Gringo price me, tico time me, pass me on a curve, lose my paperwork, shake me down for money.... but STOP the shark finning DAMN IT!

Shark finning is back in the NEWS. And guess what? It hasn't changed a bit. Laws to protect against shark finning get circumvented or ignored by the powers that be and believe me, it's definitely a calculated move by the Costa Rican government. Obviously it's about the money and keeping the Asians HAPPY. I mean, they built us a stadium, gave us police cars, bikes, soccer balls, surely they can continue to cut the fins off helpless sharks in order to continue their fucked up tradition of eating shark fin soup. Seems pretty quid pro quo. The irony, shark fin soup tastes like 'nothing'. So thousands of sharks die for 'nothing'.

Of all our videos, I wish this one had the most HITS. It's one of the first videos we ever did, I got a chance to talk to Randall Arauz, President of Pretoma, the folks that help the sharks and sea turtles. It explains the situation fairly succinctly. Please help get the WORD out, embed this video where ever you can. The sharks will thank you for it.

ALL the info in this video is still pertinent... unfortunately.

TONS of Costa Rica Travel Info and VIDEOS on our website: Travel Costa Rica NOW and if you want to visit our YouTube Channel: iCostaRica24 ENjoY!

Monday, January 3, 2011

The Pinch-inator is BACK!

Call it whatever you'd like, but THANX for sending a little bit of 'whatever' our way.

We received the BEST Christmas present we could ask for this year. Our little 7 month old chihuahua, Pincho, has made a FULL recovery from his bout with Parvo. WHOO HOO!

Pincho, a few days before getting sick... THANX Torri in Arizona, he loves his furry sleep sack.

It was an extremely rough 4-5 days for all. We felt pretty helpless watching just about every ounce of fluid exit his little body in violent fashion for the first 2 days... it didn't take long before he looked like one of those emaciated street dogs we often see when visiting Nicaragua. And we're talking a chihuahua here, not a whole lot of weight to lose as you can imagine. D'Angelo and myself stayed with him 24-7, making sure to give him constant electrolytes to battle the dehydration since he was obviously WAY too lethargic to drink for himself. We also gave him small doses of colloidal silver just because, as well as an antibiotic injection for 3 days to fight off other would-be attackers to his weakened immune system. Well, whatever it was we did, it worked. And we don't even want to think about the alternative- devastated wouldn't begin to describe it.

Pincho, yesterday, feeling a whole lot better and sportin' his new leopard skin- a present from Ed and Damien in San Jose- THANX GUYS..

We just want to thank you guys for the supportive comments and emails and also send a special SHOUT-OUT to Karen in Florida and Michelle in South Carolina- it really helped, thanx. And of course ALL the positive ENERGY that was sent our WAY during our battle with this really UG-LY virus. I'm sure if he could, Pincho would lick all your faces to show his appreciation. Besos y Abrazos from La Fortuna, Costa Rica.