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Chagas Disease in Costa Rica

January 10th, 2006

Never heard of it?

Me neither! However thanks to alert reader Julie Becker, I now know we have another nasty thing available in Costa Rica.

After doing a bit of research such as checking with the WHO and the CDC, and, of course, asking my wifey to check the CAJA hospitals and physicians here in Costa Rica, I found out that:

A. Chagas Disease does exist here, but

B. You’re going to have to live in some pretty nasty places to get it!

Your chances of catching Chagas disease are truly remote unless you’re into living adobe style.

Because it is pretty near impossible for the average person to get Chagas, I almost decided against adding it to RCR. In fact, unless you’re a Peace Corp volunteer or living with the indigenous people of CR, you’re pretty safe. Still, as I want our section on Disease in Costa Rica to be as complete as possible, I have added Chagas to the list of things that can be a downer while visiting or living here, including all, and probably more than you ever wanted to know about this disease.

So you travelers planning on switching your reservations from The Four Seasons to a some mud shack or adobe, better read about the whole thing in the section on diseases.

Those of you who prefer a somewhat higher standard of accommodations, well you can pretty much ignore this whole post.

New Writers to Join Costa Rica Blog

January 6th, 2006

This blog is about to get some new talent.

After posting my Help Wanted Ad, I received eleven emails from people expressing an interest in writing for this blog.

So far I have accepted two of the applications, and I’ll prbably add a third as soon as we can chat a bit. All are from people who I believe will add perspective and opinions about their Costa Rica experiences. I am still accepting applications!
Continue reading »

Festivals, Bullfighting and stuff

January 6th, 2006

This Post was originally in my personal blog, and is re-published here as I received a bunch of emails telling me readers here might find it interesting.

In teaching my son’s Costa Rican girlfriend how to prepare a Christmas turkey (with sage and onion dressing!) and how terribly important it is to use care in the preparation of these foods and to be especially careful of things like botulism, salmonella, athlete’s foot, and Chlamydia, I managed to poison myself (food wise) which is why I have not been writing. The good thing is that they have TV in hospitals, the IV thingy is pretty portable, and you can watch the bullfights between the bouts vomiting and diarrhea!
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Surprise! The new GSM phones still don’t work!

December 18th, 2005

Costa Rica signed a contract with the Ericsen folks to update the GSM cell phone systems in Costa Rica. This was in the wake of the scandal that sent three ex-presidents to jail for allegedly accepting bribes from the French company that originally installed the OLD GSM system that never worked worth a hoot.
Continue reading »

Political Humor – Costa Rica Style

December 14th, 2005

I have never had the pleasure of meeting Costa Rica’s Vice President, Lineth Saborío, but it is clear she has an excellent sense of humor… or perhaps an over developed sense of loyalty… or maybe she is simply as out of touch with reality as appear to be a great number of US pols and her boss, Don Abel.

According to Sra. Saborío the low popularity of the sitting president Abel Pacheco and his government is directly related to the high cost of gasoline. Say WHAT????
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Tico Shot in Miami

December 8th, 2005

Ticos (Costa Ricans) are such a peaceful people… fun loving and gentle… and certainly not confrontory (unless they have been hitting the guaro too hard. In fact when ML and I first saw the news yesterday about a Tico being shot, our first reaction was this was some typical Tico prank that got out of hand.
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Protect your PC while in CR

December 6th, 2005

(or anywhere, really)

Every month at the ARCR Seminar, we discuss Internet security, Internet Cafes here in CR and how dangerous they are for web security, how critical is virus protection, why most of your well known anti-virus programs are next to useless, and why a two-way firewall is critical… especially if you use the cafes or wireless (wifi) locations. So here it is… What I use and why all in one handy location.

Traveling to Costa Rica?

December 5th, 2005

Bring the Repellent!

Despite truly heroic efforts by the government of Costa Rica and specifically the Health Ministry, Dengue Fever is rampant here right now with the number of reported cases up a stagering 311% percent this year. The daily rains have certainly exacerbated the problem. As I discuss in the sections on Disease in Costa Rica and the ever popular “Things Your Travel Agent Forgot to Tell You“, Dengue is caused by a daytime only biting mosquito. Dengue is very easily avoided by simply using an good insect repellent, so if you are planning a visit to Costa Rica, don’t panic! Simply bring a supply of bug spray with you or plan to buy some here when you arrive. All popular brands are available here. As of today, 23,000 Ticos have or are now infected with dengue and 36 have been diagnosed with the more serious hemorrhagic type. (Source: La Nacion)

Costa Rica’s New Immigration Law

December 5th, 2005

Costa Rica’s New Immigration Law will have a profound affect on those wishing to live in paradise. Continue reading »

We now have Hooters in Costa Rica

December 4th, 2005

Well I guess we always had them…. but now… It appears that Costa Rica has truly entered the mainstream with the opening of a Hooters Restaurant near San José. With Walmart coming soon… what else can I say but hurry and visit before we become Miami. Sadly, the one chain I WISH would get here (Home Depot) apparently has no interest in this small country. Sniff.

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