I’m not one to take my own picture. Really don’t like selfies and snicker when I see people preening in front of their small screen taking pictures of themselves, often while in the midst of far more beautiful surroundings.
I like to behind the camera; however, during the past 8+ years of international living, I’ve discovered myself in a whole lot of photos. This relevation came as I worked my way through the thousands of photos I’ve taken in my travels in an effort to delete or downsize what I have.
As I reviewed these “selfies”, what struck me on more than one ocasion was that I should have taken pictures of myself in front of several places I’ve been. I have pictures of the “places”, such as Borobudur in Yogjacarta. But there are enough to tell a tale.
So here goes (and it may take more than one post):
I started my journey here, ostensibly to retire. It took less than a year to realize I needed more, however, although my stay in Jaco and Quepos was the beginning of opening my eyes to other cultures.
Before going to Costa Rica, I had started the process of acquiring a retirement visa through a brother-sister agency in LA and San Juan. This process allowed me to stay in-country and avoid the every-90-day visa runs to eithe Nicaragua or Panama.
But Jack needed to make a run, so we headed off on a bus to Granada, Nicaragua, a pretty little town south of the capital of Managua.
When I left Costa Rica, I had already made my decision to start traveling, living in (hopefully) low-cost locations in different countries for 3-6 months, depending on visa restrictions. But I needed time to get motivated, to download and to upload.
Fortunately, I was able to stay with my daughter, her husband and her daughter, Lena. To the husband’s chagrin, I was there for five weeks, but there was a lot of research to do and planning to make.
While there, I took the opportunity to visit friends in north Georgia. The husband (by his account) was a CIA hit man with 62 kills. He would later disappear for six months and come back to tell me he was on another assignment in Latin America and the total was 65, after three men attacked him in an elevator. Who knows? He was an expert marksman and at martial arts. He would die not too long afterwards from a bite from a Latin American bug that plants their eggs under your skin and the younguns work their way to your heart. His heart stopped.
And if you see a shirt theme here, you are right. The black Hawaiian is my primary travel shirt, and now sports holes in both shoulders where the backpack rubbed the shirt. The orange/yellow one has been retired. Fell apart.
“Part 2: Europe” to come in next post.