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Sunday, March 25, 2012

Don't Cry for Me, Costa Rica!

Our Santa Eulalia neighborhood
Just as we are feeling comfortably settled into our Santa Eulalia neighborhood, we've been hit with a wild pitch: We must return to our home in California! It has been a stressful two weeks since we got the news that the tenant renting our house had broken the lease. On top of that, our property manager said we probably needed to reduce the rent in order to lease it again. Given the small margins we have had between the mortgage and the rental income, we've decided our best course of action is to return to our Pilot Hill ranchette to live for a while as we look for ways to cut our expenses there. If we manage to do that, hopefully we will be able to return to Costa Rica one of these days.

At least it's springtime there so we won't be heading from tropical balmy days to frigid wintry weather. But it's also "springtime" here with many fruits and vegetables coming into season. Our avocado tree in front has bulbous green fruit all over it but they probably won't ripen before we depart on April 11th. Likewise, our mango tree in the backyard has fruit ripening but still too green to pick. 
Avocados about to ripen
Still-green mangos
We have so many mandarinas (like a tangerine), they are falling on the ground in abundance. Even our landlords came over recently to ask if they could pick a few. They filled two big bags and we still have so many I'm beginning to add them to salads just to try and use them.

Sadly, my brand new orchids, which I just bought a few weeks ago, cannot travel with me. I plan to offer them to Seidy (finally, this IS the correct spelling of her name!). She has a yard full of wild orchids of all kinds so I'm sure they''ll have a good home. Likewise, my "kitchen garden" of herbs will be parceled out to friends nearby. Bonnie wants the basil and I'm sure Jackie will take the oregano and rosemary. Hopefully, someone will take the big Aloe Vera plant. Sigh.

Goodbye to my herb garden
Of course, we had planned to go back to the States later this year to see family and friends, as we have every year, so this just pushed those plans forward a bit. We will now have time to deal with some of the "stuff" still in the barn. I worry that between the heat and the moisture that some things of value are being ruined. Long-time readers will recall what a hectic dash out of our home we had to make in December of 2009 when we decided to rent the house and head for Costa Rica. The prospective renters were being pushed out of their home due to a foreclosure. To paraphrase an old saying: Manure rolls downhill, so we had to get out of our house of over 14 years in less than six weeks. A lot of our stuff just ended up in our large storage barn. This return to residency there will give us a chance to clear it out.

We also look forward with joy to the opportunity to spend time with old friends again. Dinner parties with Ruth, chats over the fence with our neighbor Susan, time to drive into San Francisco to see our son Damian and grandson Kai and other friends there. We will make our pilgrimage to Portland to visit family there this summer and on to Spokane to see Layne's son Jess and his family. I will have a chance to fly to Texas and spend some time with my mom.

Still it's a bittersweet pill to have to leave Costa Rica, our adopted homeland that has welcomed us so warmly. As time allows, I'll continue to post reports on our activities as we settle back into life in California. And as circumstances allow, we hope to return to Costa Rica, at least for visits if not for good. Pura Vida!!


  1. Kat - Sorry to hear about your setback. You mentioned you were going to see your Mom in Texas. My wife and I live in Arlington. Are you going to be anywhere close.

    Jim & Karen Fennell

  2. Hi Jim - Well, as Texas goes, not so far. ;-) I'll be going to San Angelo, a few hours west of Arlington. And probably flying all the way on American so no stop in Arlington.

  3. Kat,

    Sorry to see that you have to leave temporarily. Here's hoping you don't get "stuck" up North!

    - Casey

  4. so sorry that you all are having to leave Costa Rica. I have enjoyed yours news about your life down there. I have envyed you getting to live there. But will have many memories of your time there. Good luck with things at home.

  5. Oh, sorry to hear that you are leaving. Come back soon!

  6. Come back to Costa Rica soon... Pura Vida!