Dear A.M. Costa Rica:
A followup to Ralph Simonson’s letter-to-the-editor lament in a recent issue of A.M. Costa Rica.
Adios, Pura Vida: After being an expat for 18 years I’ve finally decided I’m no longer willing to pay the exorbitant prices in order to continue to maintain my standard of living. Friends in the States are astounded when I recount prices I’ve been paying:
During a recent weekly shopping visit to my local AutoMercado I walked out with two shopping bags filled with food for which I’d paid 74,022 colons ($134.00). Last week I left overpriced Whole Foods in Fort Lauderdale with two bags of groceries which cost me $48.17. Admittedly not the identical products from each of the stores.
Maybe here’s a better comparison: Recently I had lunch by myself at a popular Anonos area steak house. I had an 8-ounce. cut of meat, a small baked potato, black beans, slices of platanos, two glasses of wine. The bill was 34,506 colons ($64.61). Last week I took a friend to classy J. Marks in Fort Lauderdale. Each of us had an 8-ounce prime rib with two dipping sauces, a large side of garlic mashed potatoes, a glass of Oregon Pinot Noir. Total price including a 20 percent tip: $64.00.
I waited until I returned to Florida to get a pedicure, because it’s $10 less than what is charged at a foot care chain in San José. And it includes a lengthy back massage.
Pura Vida indeed.
James L. Riedy