What is PURA VIDA & How Does It Affect North Americans!?
Pura Vida -Chances are if you've travel to Costa Rica you've heard this term before. It's a local saying and is literally part of the culture. It is used to say hello, good bye, and reference their lifestyle both the ups and downs. Pura Vida = Pure Living.
As I sit here in Coco beach consulting on a project I am met with the typical Pura Vida lifestyle. I arrive with a friend to review the project as it's supposed to be 100% done and ready for staging (setting up furniture, decor, artwork and more) but that's not the case. It's about 80% done, the vanities are missing, the shower doors are missing, electrical wires are still needing to be done, etc etc. We were in contact many times over the last 2 months with updates saying the project will be ready to go by the time we arrive. Well, we are here it's not complete and the furniture is being delivered right now from 5hrs away.
THIS is PURA VIDA you really have to learn to go with the flow and roll with the punches here. I'm a type A personality and a planner so I definitely had a stressful adjustment phase to say the least but thankfully I was able to quickly adapt to the easy going culture here.
Some Pura Vida experiences I've had over the years that I fondly look back on.
-Contractor for my home showed up a day late -Pura Vida
-Spend 1/2 a day at the bank only to be told by the teller I needed more documents -Pura Vida.
-Spend another 1/2 a day at the bank to be told by another teller I didn't need those documents -Pura Vida.
-Driving on a one way road and the guy in front of you stops to chat with his buddy blocking traffic -Pura Vida
-Driving on the back roads and you discover a road is washed away and need to take the long route around -Pura Vida
-Getting held up by a group of cows being relocated to the farm down the street -Pura Vida.
-In the more rural towns its entirely possible that the power lines or internet goes down for a day or two -Pura Vida
As you can see anything can happen at any time and could take a few trips to accomplish one task but my biggest piece of advice is to not fight the culture it is what it is and part of the countries charm. Learn how to slow down a little, do things in baby steps, and just embrace the sometimes antiquated systems. I personally with North America was a little more Pura Vida. So to answer the question, will Pura Vida drive you crazy? I'm sure it will at some point but just remember this is what easy living lifestyle is all about!
And if you don't head my advice, you may just end up like the cranky old man we witnessed with great empathy as he was clearly miserable, complaining about the heat, complaining about waiting, complaining about the lack of internet access, complaining to his family that they didn't do something the way HE wanted it done and my husband and I were just looking at him thinking "why on earth didn't you just stay home"Don't be a cranky North American -No one likes to be subject to that. This is why Costa Rica is quite popular, we all want to get away from the complainers & negativity, just rolling with the punches my friends.
Kristy & Eric
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