We’ve been keeping ourselves extra busy lately. After spending hard earned cash on rental cars, we decided it would be better to buy a car and then sell it whenever it comes time to leave Costa Rica. Due to the heavy government taxes here, cars go for almost double what they cost in the states. Most of the used cars here in the Guanacaste region have been ridden hard and put away wet with all of the washboard dirt roads, river crossings and potholes.
So, it’s been an adventure shopping for vehicles to say the least. Maybe I’ll get around to writing a post dedicated solely to car buying in Costa Rica, but for now we’ll just introduce our 2011 Hyundai Santa Fe turbo diesel 4×4.
After roaming over half of the country visiting private parties and some of the cheesiest dealers this side of Hoboken, we finally found a solid car at a small dealer near Nosara. After having an independent mechanic look it over, we negotiated a deal and counted out a big stack of colones and dollars then drove away in the new car.
The next day we drove up to Liberia to the Hyundai dealership to get a second key since we only got one with the car. Like everything Costa Rica, it took about two hours to just have them get around to ordering them from San Jose. The service guys were typing away on the computer as if they were working on their latest novel. Cars were lining up waiting for service and PJ was going into a comatose state. Hours later, we left with nothing more than we had arrived with.
We headed downtown Liberia and found an “auto decor” shop, a place that sells accessories for cars. We found a set of racks that would do the job and Alan got busy installing them. The crew was easy to work with and as the sun was setting, we headed out of of town. After a quick stop at Walmart, we drove on home in the dark dodging lightless bicycles and wandering dogs and livestock.
Other than dealing with the car, we still manage to get in a fair amount of beach time. A few steps down the hill and we’re snorkeling, sitting in our chairs and getting in a swim. The visiting Ticos always provide something interesting to watch. We had a pair of superhero kids in front of us doing karate cartwheels and going to battle.
Some days, we trudge on down to Junqs and get in a surf. The other morning, I walked down to join Chuck on some fun little beach breaks. PJ drove down a bit later and we set up camp under the palms and relaxed in the shade. PJ got in some boogie boarding and I did some body surfing.
Barbecuing fish, going out to dinner with friends and playing with borrowed pets help keep us out of trouble. We’re thankful for zoom so we can stay in touch with our compadres back home. Everything’s going good so far.