I’m headed back to the States for an expat Christmas vacation away from Costa Rica. o.O

Any time I go back to the States, the weeks before I make the trip are filled with anxiety over the inevitable reverse culture shock that any expat or long-term traveler experiences when returning to their former home. However, I am also filled with excitement over seeing my family, old friends, and being able to do some things I can’t easily do in Costa Rica on a daily basis. As the time creeps closer and closer, I decided to make a list, so I wouldn’t forget to do any of these things (I am easily distracted).

draft beers

All your draft beer are belong to me.

1. See my family and friends. Duh.


2. Blink while driving. I might even get the opportunity to use cruise control!


3. Drive from point A to point B without being run off the road by a truck, bus, or taxi driver.


4. Trust that the engineers designed the roads to accommodate the turning radius of an 18-wheeler.


5. Call services or stores to get prices or ask questions and actually get reliable answers. Or even better, look online for accurate info about the service or store. In Costa Rica, I usually have to drive all over the place and talk to someone face to face to get information.


6. Eat real Mexican and Tex Mex – I am going to gorge myself on queso dip and margaritas.


7. Order a variety of delicious draft beers. After drinking only Imperials, I’m probably going to have to tap out after one draft beer!


8. Order mixed drinks that I know have been mixed with the correct ingredients and with the proper amount of alcohol.

I feel like my list is lacking a bit… or maybe I’m just getting more and more comfortable with expat life in Costa Rica. Good hamburgers used to be #1 on that list, but I have miraculously found great burgers in the Central Valley. …8 things – can you think of anything else to add to the list? What do you look forward to when returning to or traveling to the States?