Last Updated on April 28, 2021 by Carolyn
I can’t exactly say when it happened. There wasn’t this life-changing moment that I can pinpoint and say “that was the day that everything changed”. No, I think it was more of a smoldering start. I’d been dating Wally for a few months knowing that HIS dream was to go retire on an island somewhere. He was ready to get away, immediately. Me on the other hand? No way Jose. I wasn’t going to go live on any island, anywhere. I was too busy with the life I’d made, working at my CPA tax practice, training and competing with my dogs, seeing my daughter through her teen years, and besides, I’ve never been a beach person. Give me tall mountains and green valleys every day of the week, but a beach? Thanks but no thanks.
In September 2017, a bit of a cog was thrown into Wally’s plans by Hurricane Maria’s romp through the Virgin Islands. St. Croix had been on top of Wally’s list, but the island took a direct hit from Maria. The devastating damage made him pause for thought. If he’d bought and built something there would it have been still standing? Would his retirement dream have been washed to sea in the wrath of Maria, and worse yet would he have been facing living in a disaster zone for the rest of his life. Definitely food for thought. His relocation plans shifted back to Mexico, a place where he had visited a few times and liked a lot. However, upon further research, it appeared that most of the desirable areas in Mexico had become rather pricey. He continued his search for warmth and beachfront southward through Central America.
The Perfect Place?
One evening at his cabin whilst we were in the throws of Colorado winter, he says I know where I want to go. I’m like I know, I know…Mexico. No, he said, with poetic pause “Costa Rica”. “Costa Rica”, I thought, hmm, I can’t say I even know where that is. It’s one of my Mom’s favorite places in the world but I honestly knew nothing about it. Wally’s enthusiasm was overflowing…he’d spent the weekend googling about Costa Rica and browsing Craigslist ads for property and was ready to book his flight the next day. As we sat on the couch with a roaring fire crackling in the woodstove, he shared all he’d learned about this foreign country;
“First of all Costa Rica got rid of their army 70 years ago preferring to direct that money to improve education, and health care. Their health care is rated very highly on the international level. As well it is super eco-friendly with the most dense bio-diversity in the world, with a warm tropical climate. And it is one of the world’s Blue Zones. “
We spent the rest of the night looking at photographs of beautiful farms, better known as “fincas” in Costa Rica, featuring lavish waterfalls, tropical flowers and green mountainsides with breathtaking ocean views. Ok, I was intrigued and a spark of interest was ignited.