So much has happened since last post, I can’t think where to start. This episode really begins with the Key West trip, so let’s start there.

Pero primero (but first), the really big news: Winston has 99.9% recovered from heatstroke. When I left for Key West 10 June, he was like a little old man. He slept all the time, moved very slowly, pretty much “fell” down rather than laid down. It was very sad for all of us. He was alive and seemed happy, not in pain, but not himself. Even so, we were thrilled with old Winston rather than no Winston!


When I got home, there was Young Winston The Rascal, practically good as new, bouncing around, happy to see me! He doesn’t have the muscle tone back that he had – he and I are in tune on that score, but that will come for us both. A lovely surprise to see him back to his old self!

Re. the master plan: I’ve been toying with going back to Key West for a year test-run. [I’m only planning life in one year increments from now on. It’s working great so far.] I thought about it last year and didn’t follow through, but this year, my brain’s been working overtime. There’s a lot calling me back. The two biggies are:

#1 Work. I need to work and there’s some to be had in Key West, both property management and sales – the market seems to be loosening up a bit. If we don’t replenish the coffers, we will seriously be living with my mom. That is soooo not funny. B.P. (Before Pneumonia), the trip had been planned to see about work, so I did that in between visiting with Sandford and friends.

#2 The Boys’ Lives. They need one: a social life, friends, girlfriends. They need to hang out. There is none of that here. The Gringo-Teens-in-Costa-Rica topic is too big to be included here, but it will be covered at a future date. Honest.

I figured we’d go back to Cayo Hueso (with any luck, subletting this house furnished), hang out for a year, let the boys take some college courses, see what’s there. Then either stay, if there’s work, or come back here or find the next adventure. We couldn’t live in Key West forever because — don’t laugh — you can’t have a little farm there. I need my chickens and at least one goat and a tilapia pond. But the boys need to make their own choices about what’s next and they need information and experience to do that. If they decide to stick with us, fabulous. That’s my first choice. But this is their last chance to have a “normal” American teen experience, whatever that is. I figure Key West is as good a place as any to do that.

That’s the secret master plan that’s been brewing upstairs. Er, that was brewing. You know what they say about the best laid plans…

BTW, there’s nothing calling Hal back; he’d never leave Costa Rica. But there’s a lot up there in the old country calling me back. Besides work and the boys, my mom has not been well. It’s nothing terminal, unless you count life. She just needs help and I can’t do that from here. And I didn’t like being so sick so far from my family and my home of 30
years. I want some time to hang out with my oldest and dearest friends who live there.

I went back partly to investigate that feeling, see if it was for real. From the minute I landed, I knew I wanted to be back there, that going back to Key West for a year was the right plan. The universe seemed to play along, too: in the first week, I was offered a job and a free place to live. Whoa. There’s a sign you are on the right path. Then a guy called me out of the blue to manage his two properties. “Ok,” I thought, “things are falling into place.” This is how moving to Costa Rica was for us: things fell into place, practically in our laps. A sign we are in tune with the universe, with God’s will for us. Or something like that.

Turns out, that was all a big cosmic joke: within 48 hours of being offered these two gems, they were snatched away. The prospect turned out to be a major pain in the butt and I was happy when he finally chose someone else. I’m a good property manager, excellent reputation, good prices — less expensive than most. Plus, he spoke to two of my current customers who have been customers for years, even when I moved to Costa Rica. Not to brag but I usually get the prospects who call me. Not only did I not get this guy, I didn’t want him! So… where is that sign pointing?

The job with a free place to live is still dangling out there, but one of the board members does not see how fabulous I am (what, is she blind?) So that is crunching along at a snail’s pace. Maybe it will happen, but seems likely not. We’ll see.

Pray4 Clearly, the universe, with whom I thought I was so in tune, has other ideas which it is not sharing at this time. My m.o. is to keep hoeing, knocking on doors with my master plan in hand and see which ones open. My experience is that one will open, eventually. Just what’s behind it will not be anything at all like what I was expecting. Hey, I’m open.

I’m open to staying here, too, as long as we can afford it. Our life here is really good and I don’t want to mess with it. The best of both worlds would be to live here and be able to spend a little more time there. Muy complicado!

Confident oil The biggest complication is the oil disaster. It has the potential to make Florida uninhabitable, financially as well as ecologically, for my lifetime. Fallout from the spill and the dispersant will have effects all along the Gulf coast for years. Before we make any hard decisions about leaving our Costa Rican nest, particularly re. moving to Florida, we need to see how this is going to play out. With a media blackout, that’s hard to figure. It’s nigh impossible to know the truth about what’s going on or how to judge long term effects.

Here’s the other odd thing. When I told the boys about going back for a year, they were pretty blasé about it. I thought they’d be beyond excited. But, as Mo said, “Costa Rica is home now.” How about that for something totally unexpected!

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