On the Road Again-Costa Rica

IMG_1955.jpgThe contrast between a grocery store in San Vito, Costa Rica VS the USA,  This is the entire ice cream section of the big grocery store!  Basically, you like it, you buy it or you go home.  A lot of this small town in the jungles of Costa Rica remind me of Kauai in the 1970s but also of growing up in Longmeadow, Massachusetts.  Longmeadow is a lovely town next to Springfield in southern MA.  Growing up in post WW11 there were many families with small children which was perfect for a ready made group of friends.  We lived in similar houses and had basically the same stuff.  We were moving from ‘a car in every garage and a chicken in every pot’ towards 2 cars in the garage and TV dinners in every freezer.  We were all reasonably content because we understood that TV life was fantasy and no one really had a Leave it to Beaver family.  But even the tv shows represented homes similar to ours with common household items we had in common.

Kauai 1978 was a throw back to that era although I didn’t recognize it as such at the time.  Houses were small, possessions limited and the kids played outside.  Like the ice cream in San Vito, there was one store in Lihue: Kauai Stores.  If you went looking for shoes and a pair FIT, you bought them, otherwise you went home!

So what happened   Upward mobility, expanded viewpoints and reality TV.  What was once ‘Leave it to Beaver’s’ world of homework and what’s for dinner suddenly turned into a Kardashian nightmare! Suddenly we were seeing outlandish homes of the rich and famous.  Did we learn to keep that in the fantasy parts of our brain or did we learn discontentment and an endless striving for more, bigger and better?  And the ultimate question, are we happier now that we have a 3 car garage and enormous kitchens in which we only ever use the microwave to heat up calorie laden meals from restaurants delivery services?  I’ll let you decide.

There is no visible striving in San Vito-what you have, is what you’re gonna have.  The result: smiling faces, happy people, small houses that are not on reality TV on how to live tiny, but everyday life.  All gringo’s are considered rich.  Why?  Well, they had enough money to fly here, right?  

Author: ontheroadagaincostarica

Living in Costa Rica

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