Moving to Costa Rica? Or Anywhere Else? Don’t Bring “Stuff”

If only…

…I didn’t listen to the conventional wisdom about moving to Costa Rica:

  • I wouldn’t have purchased ANYTHING new to bring here because “quality is crap and prices are high” in Costa Rica. Factor in the cost of shipping, and those three ceiling fans that ARE. NOT. NEEDED. (for example) are getting pretty expensive and take up valuable space.
  • I would have given more stuff away in the U.S. It’s hard to give stuff away here. Who do we give it too? We used old pillows (why were we keeping these in the first place?) and blankets (ditto) as “stuffing” in and around bins and boxes we shipped here.  Turns out the pillows will be bedding for dogs at Lighthouse Animal Shelter. But the blankets? I guess someplace in Costa Rica, it get’s cold enough to need a real blanket, but I’m not delivering!
  • We have more kitchen stuff than the average restaurant in Atenas. Eight muffin pans? Four cookie sheets? Twenty-seven hot pads? 104 dish towels? Really?
  • Should have left more clothes in the U.S. We both have at least three bins full of long sleeve shirts, sweatshirts and jackets (!), and long pants that never see the light of day unless the earth falls off it’s axis.
  • Just because it WILL fit in the shipping container… doesn’t mean it SHOULD fit in the shipping container. I fell for the “it doesn’t cost any more to load the container FULL.”  Nope, the shipping is about the same from a 20 foot x 8 foot x 8 foot container to a 40 x 8 x 8. But the hassle-factor rises exponentially. Remember, every bin and box will be handled by you a minimum of nineteen  times from the time you pack until it finds it’s final place. It’s a fact, nineteen!
  • You’ll probably have visitors from the U.S. who can bring you stuff you find you really need… NEED being the important criteria. We’ve had excellent results getting stuff mailed to us here. Nancy has already gotten shipment of multiple sewing and knitting items. Won’t you be making a trip back to the U.S. sometime? One trip to Target and you can load up on stuff you NEED and tote it  back in a duffel bag.

Is moving to Costa Rica different than moving across the US? Yes!  There are ships involved.  I was feeling like a sucker as I carted carload after carload of stuff to Goodwill. (After four HUGE yard sales.)  But after the nineteenth time of moving 486 bins and boxes, I sure wished I’d made a few more trips.

Ah well, the sun rises and the sun shines everyday in Costa Rica and for that I am happy. Eventually, this phase of my life will soon pass like mildew spores on a humid breeze.

It is Pura Vida.


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Moving to Costa Rica? Or Anywhere Else? Don’t Bring “Stuff” — 8 Comments

  1. I think your tale just proves that Americans keep too much “stuff.” At least the move forced you to purge, even if you had to do it once before and once after.

    If you put the stuff in a pile next to the road with a “free” sign, will the stuff disappear? That magic always happens around here with things, but I don’t know about Costa Rica.
    Catch Her in the Wry recently posted…Music Monday – Back to School todayMy Profile

  2. @Catch: For sure, US Americans keep way to much “stuff.” But when there are two of us making the decision on what to get rid of and what to keep, it gets difficult.

    I may go sit on the public square and do some tailgate gratis “business” as you suggest. It rains every day now, so can’t just leave it…

  3. I keep this in mind. We are planning to move to Costa Reca next year so , I think its better to keep what you mentioned here in mind. Just in case my husband and I have a debate on what to bring there.
    Rhaina Amor recently posted…Best Fat Loss ProductMy Profile