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manofthecoldland last won the day on October 12 2019

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About manofthecoldland

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  1. Good clip roadmeister. At the tail end you could see 5 of the Seven Deadly sins/Cardinal Vices in the scene as the Devil blew his sax.... Lust was the center attraction, while Pride (Vanity) danced with a partner while admiring himself in his hand-mirror. Envy was grousing about how others had better tables than his. Sloth was asleep on his feet and miss Gluttony was busy tearing into her chicken. Wrath (Anger) was probably still working his job at the door as the bouncer and Greed was probably in back somewhere counting the night's take. I think I've run across some of these Seven's disciples locally at times.
  2. The memory I have of Raquel Welch Is in the brief bit role she played in the 1967 film "Bedazzled". Starring Peter Cook as the Devil, and Dudley Moore as Stanley Moone (Faustus) it was set in 1960's 'swinging London'. Raquel played the personified role of Lust. She attempts to seduce Stanley in his bedchamber at the Devil's London nightclub, which is done up in 'early Nazi' decor. The Devil says she's called 'Lillian Lust - the Babe with the Bust', which her costume barely contains. One of my favorite philosophical/theological satire comedies of all time. Just thought I'd mention it since Hollywood cr*pped on the remake in 2000. Newer was not better in this case.
  3. "Sweet dreams are made of this. Who am I t disagree." Q. Why the ex-pat rule of thumb? A. Re the relatives..... "Some of them want to use you. Some of them want to be used by you ..... Some of them want to abuse you.... Everybody's looking for something."
  4. 'Hollow block natural gray/grey' seems to be a very popular choice judging from what I have seen.
  5. Why do Filipinos walk so slow ? Because more often than not, they are obviously not in any hurry to get where they are going. They are usually not pressed for time and the culture is not clock driven to the extent that Westernized cultures have become since the era of the Industrialized age. It wasn't that long ago that only the upper classes could afford personal time pieces. My father passed my grandfather's pocket watch on to me and that was it. Not of any great financial value today, but to a man born in c. 1870, it represented great social and status achievement. With steam, horse and human muscle power limitations, time accuracy, speed and efficiency weren't as critical to societies' functioning as they became today. At least in the time-driven countries most of us left or retreated from to come here to enjoy life at a slower and more relaxing pace. Unfortunately for many of us it can be problematic to convert and adapt to the former historic norms since we worship and are tuned to the speed and efficiency of modernity. In many areas of PI living, they are running on B.F (before Ford) time. Glad at least the beer isn't delivered by animal carts now, we have access to ice and some even personal refrigerators, etc. That's what I like about living here. Not everyone is hurrying about with a mission madness to keep up with time demands. Its was hard to down shift to granny gear for walking about here, but I had little choice and now enjoy it. But only while living here. I revert to speed and high efficiency time modes while living in the US for 6 months of the year. To maintain sanity and peace of mind, its important for me to be able to switch physical and psychological modes depending upon the culture I am functioning in at the time and understand the necessity to adapt and accept the differences for the realities they are. You have to master and learn to live with a certain level of cognitive dissonance if you move here to live and have only experienced a uni-culture beforehand. That's the difference between a happy and successful long-term ex-pat, and a miserable one. I know fellows of both types. For what its worth. I write these bits sometimes to convince myself that I made a good life decision to live here like I do. Ha-ha ! I'll never really know..... but I can live with that. The question for some is...... Can you ?
  6. You're living.... where? I want to make sure I'm not near the place when I need shearing. on second thought, maybe it IS the place to be 'sheared'. Joking of course. AT least it had A/C, I hope. You might want him to put the chair back for a better massage.... but it will cost you. I never tried that, but have seen it done in shops.
  7. If he loves it there, he will probably prefer it.... but it will be good for him to do a comparison and contrast. Most of us long term expats are here because of our women I'd venture to say... because you don't see many foreign ex-pat couples living or retiring here without a Pinoy connection of some sort. Not so for CR. You are correct re the higher cost of living there. If you compare costs on Numbeo, you will see that even outside the capitals of MNL and San Jose, in secondary cities and Prov. capitals. your rents and food are double or more, but there are areas of lower costs in certain places.... where I myself would not want to live. I spent some time there around the year 2000 in 3 places off and away from the popular tourist sites. Wiki states 10% or so English language capability but since tourism is a major economic income source, you can get by. US and Canadian tourists dominate. My college Spanish plugged most of the simpler gaps but i seldom had to use it. But it is much easier linguistically in the PI. With only 5 million citizens, CR seems very uncrowded compared to the PI. That's a plus in my book. The Spanish colonialism era left similar hallmarks, like public plazas, churches, govt. structures etc., and lots of similar tropical crops. But I did like seeing the many coffee fincas in the CR highlands and rows of pineapples. Mostly rice lands a sugarcane here. Sugar there also, with street venders who have small cane crushers and sell you a fresh cup made on demand. After reviewing 1/2 doz, 3 yr. old Youtube vids of the towns I was familiar with in CR, not a lot of abnormal change has taken place there compared with what I have witnessed here in the PI places I have come to know over the last 17 years. I'm guessing that N.A. tourism and S.E.Asian tourism have had very different economic peaks and ebbs that have had impacted the two countries very differently, not forgetting the effects of the remittances from OFWs and the numerically large Pinoy diaspora. The temps and climate in the high Central Valley is much easier on old guys then the coastal lowlands by a long shot. I spent my time in CR, quickly escaping from San Jose, living in San Isidro de General (pop. 45K... considered about the 8th largest), and little San Vito, pop. 15K, near the boundary with Panama (but no direct rod connection). From Isidro I could drop down to Dominical on the Pacific coast. TIny hippie backpacker surfing village way off the beaten path. From the vids I just watched... not too much change compared to whats happened here in the PI over the same time frame. The road from San Vito down to the Pacific coast was a lengthy series of ridge running switchbacks that ended at a junction town on Hwy 2, I think the Pan-A:m Hwy that skirts the coast into Panama. Insufferably hot and humid, plastic litter was the main ground cover from what I could see. I wanted to leave as soon as I got there. So I had a cold beer and caught the next bus heading back up the mountains to San Vito. The temp/humidty change extremes were many, many, many times worse than I ever experienced between San Fernando La Union and Baguio. At my little resto in San Vito when I would order a basic plate meal.... not sure if it was locally called a casita or familia or some such endearing diminuative, they would serve your drink with a re-washed plastic straw. Maybe ahead of their time since they were definitely into re-cycling They did have superior pizza there at another place, since the town was founded by Italian immigrant pioneers after WW II. I think Tica food is more varied than Pinay prepared meals, but when I am hungry I love them equally. Truth be told, my Pinay spent some time as the head cook at a local cantina and prides herself on experimenting with new dishes... so i'm spoiled and not a good comparative judge in this realm. I made the same mistake there that I initially made here, assuming that small retail businesses had a cash drawer that could break a larger note. Same scenario as here. 20 km out of town was a renowned botanical garden that had, like several dozen different palm tree species and a host of other bizarre plants. Only 3 or 4 people visiting at the time I was there. I stopped at a roadside handicraft co-op on the way back, and in that little shop I saw more clever items shaped from tropical flora than you will find in all the tourist souveneir shops in Boracay, Puerto Galera and Palawan put together. In downtown San Jose their craft shop was also superior in variety to what is found in the elite craft shop in Mabini next to the City-State Tower Hotel..... close to Robinson's. They do crafting very well in CR. They still have long lines outside of banks at the end of the month in the CR from what I saw in the vids. Same as I remember from 20 years ago. 3 or 4 times longer than here in the days following Typhoon Ursula on the 25th. The eye passed over our city. When the N. wind completed its blow, we stepped outside to survey the round 1 damage. One of the neighbors waved and cheerily said, "Merry Christmas". We merrily returned the same and then headed back to the safety of our concrete c.r. since the counter punch was beginning to blow in from the S. and we needed to hunker down and pray a bit. I don't know if you can find that kind of spirit in Costa Rica.
  8. Are any forum members using speech to text programs or apps for their postings here ? If so, How practical and useful is it? I pinched a nerve 3 weeks ago that rendered my right hand somewhat de-sensitive, making typing more difficult and slower. I can deal with that, but if its a harbinger of my future problems with aging, I might as well start checking out options now. I would like to leave behind some autobiographical tales some day for my descendants and this may be the needed tool. Any shared thoughts or suggestions on this concern would be appreciated. You are all very interesting and unusual men here and might want to leave your stories behind for others as well.
  9. From what i see first hand here and on many Asian country vids, crowded, limited space maneuvering conditions breeds a totally different set of mental and operational attitudes toward anonymous peds and other drivers. They are viewed more as animate obstacles getting in your way and often relegated to the same level as straying animals ..... dogs, chickens. etc. that ought to move out of your way at the last second or deal with their self-inflicted consequences. And they most always do just that. So when accidents do occur, people are quick to blame the victim. They see things very differently here at times and in certain situations that to Westerners would see as clear cut wrong and lacking in consideration for the safety of others. For that and other reasons, I dot't drive here, but we rely on a personal service trike relationship with an older, financially struggling friend couple.... neighbors who depend on us to a great extent, and in return provide us with unlimited service in terms of time and distance. For us and our situation, it is safer, more convenient and cheaper then the other options and alternatives.
  10. In my home country, drivers are ALWAYS expected to cede to pedestrians, by law and custom. Not so here. I hold my breath every time I'm in a MNL cab going down pedestrian crowded side streets. The auto/walker minuet is a mecho-dance they seem to engage in here with great skill, timing and poise. Maybe that's why dancing is taught at an early age in the schools,..... it being a crucial survival skill. I always expect to see injury but its like watching a bull fight where a whole population is in the ring, deftly and barely avoiding the horns.
  11. For your consideration: Have an older Pinoy relative who your wife trusts check with his mates and get 2 more quotes. He also might be able to get a labor quote from a willing friend or connection to do the job on site if you buy the materials. The guy might have access to a welder....borrowing or renting one reasonably. No sense in doing the work yourself, IMO, considering local PI labor costs and inherent risks to your health and well-being.
  12. Things are quite peculiar here at times.... especially in terms of price and value. The 'luxury' items, like chocolate and especially international name brands, are indeed, 'luxury' items. I usually stick to local, generic variants. Yes, the quality isn't the same.... but they'll often do in some situations. Imports will always cost you a premium price that you'd never cough up the same cash for at home. On the positive side, when I used to buy a bottle of Chilean wine, I was always amazed at the low price..... considering the distance it has traveled to get here.
  13. I think its the perceived, and often mis-perceived, imaginary radiance from the invisible auras of wealth, power, prestige that makes foreigners 'guapo' here...... I mean, older gents are never given such compliments where I've been unless their much greater wealth or status is on exhibit. e.g, expensive autos, clothing and jewelry. My long time friend loves living here in the winter, since he's a man of modest and limited means, but confesses to bathing in the attention he gets from young women here. Little do they know, and much do they assume. He's a decent looking guy for his 71 years and moves spryly, but dressed in ripped jean shorts, with white socks and sandals and good-will T-shirts, he sure isn't a fraction as handsome as the majority or young Filipino lads I see everywhere.... who never get much notice from the local damsels. So I think that 'guapo' here means........ well it doesn't always mean physically handsome. Maybe desirable to have as a boyfriend who can indulge and dote on your economic fantasy dreams, hopes and aspirations. But then again, what the hell do I know. I'm not a Pinay.
  14. That's a reasonable, intelligent and realistic way to look at it. One of my friends back in the cold land built a very large home in Cebu for his wife's father maybe 25 years ago. He was a government lawyer, his wife a non-working homemaker who raised the two sons with him and they lived modestly for the duration of his work life. His wife would come back to visit her family who all lived in the house. In later years, with her ill and aging father, she would often stay months at a time... The point being that despite the large monetary investment, it was worth it to them as a couple to have her dad taken care of by the family. He only came over here once or twice in that quarter century and has no intent of retiring here. but it made his wife happy. His sons will never live here, so despite it being in her and their names, if he predeceases her and she leaves their sons to live their lives in the USA, while she returns here to live out her years, the extended family will use it as a family home. It was a major investment for him, but worth it in terms of his wife's happiness and their marital well-being. In retirement, he continues to live modestly, and she enjoys the big house and the relatives, kow-towing to her when she comes for extended stays. Maybe because he and her pay the utilities, etc. Ha-ha. I assume its a quite common practice for most overseas Filipinas. Most of the ones married to my USA friends seem obsessed with building a house for their parents when they engage in a first world economy. After that, comes funding education for other relatives and medical needs.
  15. For some reason the term 'sticky wicket' popped into my head while reading this and aware of the fact that you chaps lived in Cricket Country. Not being quite sure of the meaning (I always thought it was the bit on top of the two posts that that was 'sticking' and hard to knock off for some reason..... l was wrong.). I looked it up and it seems that it still is an apt metaphor for dealing with putting money into communal family property that will be subject to PI inheritance laws, since when the pitch gets wet and starts drying after a property ownership changes hands through inheritance laws, things can get quite unpredictable. So my question is.... Can a situation like this be metaphorically called a potential sticky wicket ?.... asks an inquisitive Kano.
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