One Chance

Two of my closest friends in Las Vegas wanted me to name my blog Eat, Pray, Abby, and I’m just now starting to believe that they were serious. The reason I thought they were joking? Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love was romantic. Living in small town Costa Rica is … not.

Yet the most common question anyone asks me about Playa del Coco concerns who the heck I date. The answer is simple: no one. There are few men here between the 19-year-olds flocking here for their diving certification and the charming retirees from the States filling up my favorite hangout, Coconutz, in the afternoons. (And even they don’t call.)

So here’s my first entry about my non-dating life in Costa Rica.

Starting around the beginning of November, some of my neighbors started staring at me with obvious disdain. It was strange for the tight-knit barrio, but these people lived two whole blocks away, so I didn’t worry. One morning, I happened to see the one guy, a Tico, I knew from that area walking down the street. He flagged me down. I was shocked to hear that he’d broken up with his wife of 10 years and was leaving the barrio. “I’m so sorry to hear that,” I gushed. He stopped me from saying more.

“Everyone thinks you’re my new girlfriend,” he told me.

I laughed nervously. It’d been more than a month since I’d even laid eyes on this man – and he’d still been very much with his wife.

Without a beat, he asked, “So? Will you be my girlfriend?”

I was speechless. Where I come from, months of dating don’t even always garner a “girlfriend” status. Was this guy joking? What was his name again? He took my confusion as a no, laughed a rather mocking little laugh, and hugged me good-bye. Less than a week later, I ran into him at a bar, and he went on and on about his new girlfriend.

If I’d known then that I’d never get asked out again in Costa Rica, I just might’ve said yes.

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I'm a life-long travel junkie journalist who works hard to find adventure in everyday life after two years of travel and expat living.

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  1. I thought I knew how the whole boyfriend/girlfriend thing worked. If you just have to live within 2 blocks of someone then I’ve got it all wrong. I need to go give the girl who lives 4 floors down the good news.

    By the way, those are super nice photos. Your posts always have such good pics 🙂

  2. Aw, thanks, Shawn! Mario took most of them, but thank goodness I had some “saved” on Facebook. Yay! I expect an update on that neighbor of yours…

  3. Oh abby… breaking hearts all over town.

  4. Abby– you should have said yes! By now, you would be pregnant of your second baby and maybe already married and divorced… see how much you lost ??? 🙂

  5. Haha scary!

  6. Yikes! You’ll need to pick your next home abroad more carefully.

    Do you think I picked Medellin for the mountains and efficient metro system? 🙂

  7. Abbs, this is too funny. What can we say, foreign men just can’t resist hot American women! But hey, even if you lived back in Vegas, it doesn’t mean you would be dating any great men either. Sadly! lol

  8. Jessie Gibson says:

    Hahahahahaha so much to learn, hahaha…..

  9. Coming from Alaska, where there are about three men for every woman, Coco proves to be a target rich environment. (latest poll of those Alaska women says: “The odds are good, but the good are odd”)

    Who knew I would move in next door to one or two of the hottest in town.


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