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About Marsrox

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  1. May clear skies rule the night. Look west towards the horizon between 6:16 -6:45 pm. Support efforts to avoid light pollution. Street lights can be shielded to point down and not spray light into the skies above. https://www.space.com/21485-moon-venus-mercury-configuration.html Marsrox
  2. For the next couple of weeks, go out in cloudless skies fifteen minutes after sunset, and for the next forty-five minutes look west and just above the horizon to view a rare event. The bright object is the planet Venus. At 'one o'clock', two-fingers thickness at arm's length to the right, the dimmer object is planet Mercury, the planet closest to the sun at 88 million miles. 99% of the human race has never purposely viewed Mercury as it rarely gets very far from the horizon. For people living away from the equator with longer twilight, it is lost in the glow. Get out the glass and b
  3. Dear E2: It has very much to do with LIVING (caps are yours) here because it relates the maximum amount that US govt employees can be reimbursed as they travel around the country or while residing here on assignment short term. It is not meant to describe the allowance for long term rental housing which would be covered elsewhere in an 'employment contract' and subject to that employees job position, length of service and whether a rural or urban work site. I am suggesting that it allows a person pondering foreign retirement to review the relative cost-of-living in various countries a
  4. Since it seems one cannot copy and paste certain links (?) because of the way this site is formatted, for the benefit of those interested in the cost of living comparisons based on US State Department employee per diems, I'll type the link as it appears. Please delete the spaces meant to keep it from looking like a link. Don't forget the periods! http:// aoprals. state.gov /web920/per _diem_ actionasp? menuhide= 1&countrycode =1048
  5. I clicked on the link this moment and there's the State Dept page as expected. I have Norton installed and received no warning. Perhaps if this topic interests you, go directly to the State Department website and search 'per diems'. Marsrox
  6. The US State Dept publishes a per diem for their employees in-country and thus is an excellent way to compare what it may cost to live in selected countries. Flip around their website to view comparisons. https://aoprals.state.gov/web920/per_diem_action.asp?MenuHide=1&CountryCode=1048 MARSROX
  7. induna has presented an clear, solid and factual academic description of the past, present and future state of the colon currency exchange v the US$1. I hope that readers will make the effort to gain from his insights and honor his contribution by reviewing this fine work. This type of exchange is why I read the ARCR Forum. Together, our joint experiences and knowledge can help us make our lives here better. In the interim since I posted yesterday, I wondered if there were formulas/calculations that could be made to attempt to forecast currency velocity changes and their direction by i
  8. "I would just like to make one factual observation with respect to the value of the Colón. Virtually all of the central bank's interventions have been to prop up the value of the dollar, not the Colón. Without intervention the tipo de cambio would be lower than it is now, not higher." Induna was kind enough to provide a link (see his contribution) to an article in La Nacion that included a chart of the recent currency interventions by the CR Central bank. I had not seen this and it was the opposite of what I would have expected. All actions were to to apparently to buy dollars by selling t
  9. First, a note of thanks to Paul (eppicat4) for helping me navigate the path through the apparently un-mapped maze enabling me to post a 'new topic' to the ARCR forum. I could find no directions for this task. 'Right click' failed me. Humbled, I. In the past there has been unvarnished derision against one contributor that fears for the economic future here. He's got a point. Developing economies worldwide are falling like cards leaving Costa Rica as seemingly the last man standing. Or maybe just leaning for support against the extinguished volcano still claimed 'eruptive' in Fortuna re
  10. After a night of shakin' the bees out of the honey hive, "The Hill Bear" (El Oso del Cerro) shared his thoughts with me/us at 3:56 this morning writing: "Wow. That's a lot of words to say that you sound very scared to live in Costa Rica. May I ask what area you live in? Is it San Jose'? Is it a bad neighborhood of San Jose'? I ask because it does sound like either you're kind of paranoid or else you have had some very bad experiences in Costa Rica with robbers etc. Honestly, I thought my security ideas were pretty extreme but yours make mine sound like nothing. If I had to liv
  11. Just a note based on personal experience and observation regarding living securely in Costa Rica - or any other place on Planet Earth. Maybe this dialogue will help some newcomers take steps to live safely in this particular place. We all seek/enjoy 'immersing ourselves' in the flavor of the local culture. It's not a 'vanilla' one like we left behind, but a kaleidoscopic salsa. Of course, no one likes to discuss or worry about their personal safety, that's not fun. But 'pura vida' has both positive and negative connotations. This forum allows us to share experiences that at first
  12. Hola Terry: I do not know what a 'PM' is, but whatever it is, I don't have it. Or maybe I do and its buried under some electrons somewhere with my name in quarks. Feel free to resend your wisdom to Marsrox@gmail.com Thank you for the help. Hola Gayle: It was around 1994, when I first needed an email address (for aol.com dial-up). I was dealing, researching and writing about meteorites, specializing in those from Mars. I needed something remarkable enough I could develop as a 'brand'. MARSROX hit me in the noggin. Little did I know that this interest would lead me on a j
  13. This regards dealing with the aftermath of dying in Costa Rica while owning your 'dream house', or any other real estate and tangible property, all unencumbered by liens. I realize that I should have an atty help me write a will. I have a home and lot worth low six figures and a used vehicle worth (today) about $20K, all in my name (no S.A.'s). There are personal effects in the house. My financial accounts in the US have beneficiaries which I believe keeps those funds segregated from being included here. I searched the arcr archives and found no threads to suggest the best type of
  14. re: Ownership of Home I am a US citizen, a permanent resident of CR, single without dependents, with an above average nest age. Since I moved to CR in 1990, with a 'break' from 1996-2002, I've - - rented a condo in Los Yoses, - a house in a gated community in Ciudad Colon, - an apartment in Alajuela, and... - presently a 2/2 house in Santa Ana in a private compound. It's $750/mo with cable, internet, garbage, a landline, water and electric. It is private and I have tall trees and gardens, an atrium off of the bathroom. For nine years I owned an 800m2 home on a 6000m walled
  15. Anyone pondering building a 'normal' size home here (160m2 in my case) may want to remember my experience. I've been here 18 years and have remodeled two 'mansions' (I owned one) which were not 'blessed' with building permits or municipal government inspections. So that process was unknown to me. I have purchased a lot with a view of the Pacific Ocean..... from just outside of Puriscal at 1,100m/3,300' altitude:>) No aircon needed. There are a couple of 'American' areas there already because it is peaceful and natural. This lot is in a new one. My norteamericano neighbors recom
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