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Tom and Marcia

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Everything posted by Tom and Marcia

  1. Tom and Marcia

    cedula renewal

    They tell you the cost when you make the appointment. T
  2. Tom and Marcia

    cedula renewal

    From la migra website....Comprobante emitido por autoridad competente que indique que la persona extranjera mantiene activa la pensiĆ³n. The law does require proof of pension to renew temporary residency. I would plan on having a current notarized SS letter from the embassy. I doubt that your US bank records will help. Remember, you are dealing with government employees and they have little discretion in their jobs. I renewed my permanent recently and didn't need this. T
  3. Tom and Marcia

    It's Different Here

    After almost 8 years in Costa Rica, I still notice how different some things can be. Today we were invited to attend a ceremony in Caldera where the U.S. was turning over 3 frigates, 4 helicopters, and a fixed wing plane to the Guarda Costas de Costa Rica. These, of course, will be part of the drug war. They will also be used to enforce fishing laws and to make rescues at sea and on land. When I got to the port, I told the guard at the gate that I was there for the ceremony. He opened the gate without asking my name or checking ID. I followed a line of uniformed men to find my way to the correct location. I dropped Marcia and our friend near the venue and parked the car. When I returned on foot, people were entering the building and i followed without being questioned by anyone. The reporter who invited us, saw me and had a coworker show me to the seating area where Marcia and our friend were waiting. When the event was ready to start, Presidente Solis and his wife entered accompanied by the US Ambassador and US and Costa Rican Coast Guard officers. They passed within feet of us and there was no visible sign of heavy security. Several speeches were made, the vessels paraded past, and official papers were signed. Then we all left. No metal detectors, no one checking bags, just a simple gathering. I have seen news footage of Solis at other events, walking through crowds and talking to people. Can you imagine this happening in the US? T
  4. Tom and Marcia

    It's Different Here

    I was thinking about another difference a few days ago. There certainly are cultural difference in different countries, but mostly people are people. I was thinking about how peaceful demonstrations are in Costa Rica. It seems like there is always some kind of march that makes traffic a nightmare. But, it never seems to break into a full on riot. My theory is that the police force in Costa Rica doesn't look like a military force coming to break up the demonstration. The people have their say, the police observe, but they don't intimidate. Compare that to other countries with police in riot gear or full on military force. That's just my theory. T
  5. Tom and Marcia

    Realestate law?

    That's a good question for a lawyer. T
  6. Tom and Marcia

    cedula renewal

    The US embassy provides a notarized proof of pension document. Does Canada not offer that service? T
  7. Costa Rica is a leader in effective treatment of snake bites and others are studying it. T
  8. I think our birth country (at least for many of us) tends to be paranoid about numerous things). Can you imagine anyone in the States giving you their bank account number so you could make a deposit into it? How about spending more on education than defense? How about background checks to buy a gun? How about traveling out of the country? T
  9. Tom and Marcia

    television or online tv

    unlocator.com I had multiple senior moments. T
  10. Snakes can create a lot of fear, but the reality is that even the biggest snake doesn't see you as prey and won't bite you unless you get too close, step on it, or try to pick it up. My brother-in-law says he has stepped on rattlesnakes without being bitten. Watch where you step. Don't reach into or under brush piles. Stay on marked trails. Don't get a job as a field worker. There were articles a week or two ago about how Costa Rica is a leader in effective treatment of snake bites and others are studying it. T
  11. Tom and Marcia

    television or online tv

    My computer savvy brother works for NetFlix. He doesn't know how to defeat their proxy blocker. We use NetFlix and there is plenty of content available here. We use unbocker.com to watch Amazon prime. It also works for US networks. I mostly watch Comedy Central with it. T
  12. Tom and Marcia

    Newbie introduction

    As a Spanish speaker with experience living in a Central American country, you have a big head start over many. I recommend that you integrate into a community and not seek too much advice from expats. As eleanor said, the people are very welcoming. I'm not saying that you can't have non-Tico friends, we all do. It's just best to not take advice from people who live apart from the locals. Some only associate with others like them and fear and do not understand their surroundings. The "expat community" doesn't appeal to many of us and areas that are known as such tend to be more expensive. You can live a modest, comfortable life here much cheaper than in most of the US if you adapt your lifestyle to fit. Those who try to relocate their lives without accepting change tend to fail. It sounds like you have the experience to do well. Welcome and good luck. T
  13. Tom and Marcia

    Moving cats

    We brought two cats in soft carriers that fit under the seats. They made a little noise at take off and landing, but otherwise were quiet. Vets don't like to sedate cats and that should be a last resort. Maybe you can get and idea of how they will be by by putting them in carriers and placing them in a closet or under your bed for a few hours. I think that most cats will sleep when in a carrier in a dark place. T
  14. The minimum number of cats required for crazy cat lady membership has never been clearly established. Marcia has been working on it. Neighbors have dumped kittens at our door. We now have 4 and have informed the neighbors we don't want more. So, if she isn't a CCL, she sure has the merit badge. T P.S. I like cats. Pero basta!
  15. Thanks. Most people are probably as unaware as I was. T
  16. I was doing some random surfing when I found this. People often ask questions about working here. Perhaps our moderator could pin this so that we can refer to it in the future. http://costarica.com/relocation/working-in-costa-rica/ T
  17. Tom and Marcia

    Aduanas regulations

    You need to know what you can and can't bring before you pack, but having knowledge of the regulations will never help you win an argument with an official. Most things are common sense like no guns, explosives, drugs, fruits, vegetables, If you are carrying the items into the country, most things that you can't bring aren't allowed in air baggage. Do you mind if I ask, what items you are worried about? T
  18. As Eleanor said there will be times that you want to bang you head on the desk. Just take a breath and try your best to produce what they want. An attitude of, "I don't understand and need your help" works better than any arguments. T
  19. Tom and Marcia

    questions re terciopelo anti-venom

    Death from snake bite is very rare. Unfortunately, people like your friend are at the highest risk. Every year, I see reports of the death of a field worker. Some of these had underlying health problems. It does seem that the antivenom would be more effective distributed throughout areas at risk. I suspect that there are good reasons, or at least reasons, that it isn't. If you can find the answer, or even change the policy, it will be time well spent. T
  20. Sometimes it seems very difficult and doesn't make sense to us. We are used to just walking into a bank and opening an account and being able to use any number of banking services. It's not like that here and it is mostly due to how Costa Rica responds to US money laundering enforcement. So it depends upon the bank and may depend upon the person waiting on you. The first step is get an account at a bank. Make sure that they know that you want to wire funds from the US. They will tell you what you need to do. Each bank is different and the documents that you have to produce may be a bit frustrating. When we arrived 7 years ago, we opened accounts both in dollars and colones at Banco Nacional (BN). ARCR gave us a letter of introduction that identified us as affiliated with them and applying for residency. They also gave us a copy of their utility bill to use as an address. It still took quite a long time, but we walked out with accounts. Since then some banks have become more restrictive and some are more flexible. Once you have the account, you need to make sure that it is authorized to receive the fund you want to transfer. Do this before you try to send a wire transfer or it will be rejected and returned to your bank. Here is where it can vary a lot. Different branches may request different things. I followed advice I found here and tried copies of my bank statements, tax returns, and a letter (in Spanish) from my bank. This was rejected. They wanted a notarized letter that stated what funds we would send and the source of the funds. I finally wrote my own document that basically said that I would make a one time transfer of $ big followed by periodic transfers of up to $ small per month. These funds come from my bank so-and-so and are from years of saving and the sale of a house. I then went to the embassy, where they will notarize any document. The nice notary stamp did the trick. I made the transfer and never had to make any of the others. The other difficulty may be getting your bank to make the transfer without appearing at the bank to do it. You can understand that wiring thousands of dollars from your account in the US to Costa Rica could be difficult. So make sure that your bank is aware of your plans and ask them what they require. As always, your experience may vary. I'm not sure if rentista dollars need to be deposited in BCR or they can be in any bank. Others can answer that. Just be sure that first you have the account; next, it is ready to receive transfers; and finally, your bank is ready to send. Bien viaje en su nueva vida. Que tenga mucho paciencia. T next,
  21. Maybe that's what caused my lumps. Too much carne. T
  22. Tom and Marcia

    A Tico Life

    I have heard this said before, but Ticos see their fellow man (and women) differently than many others do. I just saw that one of our local characters died. His name was Carlitos and he was a gigantic man. He worked as a Guatchiman and sold lottery tickets. I never passed him without shaking his hand and he always had a friendly greeting to all. The comments I am seeing about him are like these. He worked hard. He always greeted everyone. He was a humble but friendly person. Even though he had people park in yellow zones, we will miss him. I will miss him too. T
  23. It would be difficult to live on $300 per week. Even in more rural areas, it would require a very frugal lifestyle. Going out for drinks wouldn't be in the budget. Some people do live on this kind of budget, but his money wouldn't go anywhere near as far as it does now. T
  24. Tom and Marcia

    Trash day and Perros

    Maybe people had separated food waste from trash and disposed it some other place. I always freeze food waste to prevent a smelly trash can. I have seen some people throwing food waste out the back door. T
  25. Tom and Marcia

    ARCR Emails

    Ditto to member number in subject line
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