The Prelude

Hogar, dulce hogar, translates to Home, sweet home.

If you are a faithful reader of our blogs you know that Jeff and I are very frugal travelers – or maybe we are travelers because we are very frugal? Anyway, we often get our accomodations through sites like VRBO (vacation rentals by owner) or occassionally Airbnb. We are returning to Costa Rica this week and several weeks ago, on a lark, I wrote to our friends Annie and Norman in San Ramon, CR telling them we were planning to come down and we were going to stay in Atenas because we want to check out that area. I asked her if she knew anyone around who might have a place to rent and that we did not want to spend more than $150-175/night. (This is high season in Costa Rica)

Well, holy crow! Yes, she did! Annie’s neighbors are going on vacation and have very flexible dates. Okay then – we love San Ramon and it is within easy driving distance to Atenas. A couple of emails back and forth and Jeff and I will be staying at “Kyle and Diane’s” house for 7 days for only $500! AND, we’re renting their car for $150 instead of getting one from Budget for $350+. Yippee!

So, we have had this trip planned for several months and bought our airline tickets in January. Can you imagine my surprise when I printed our boarding passes to discover that we didn’t have seat assignments. Hmmm…obviously that’s not right. I started digging around on Delta’s flight info and discovered that not only did we not have seats, we were numbers 5 & 6 on the standby list. What?? Time for a little person-to-person. After a call to Delta and an extra $100 we have seat assignments. Supposedly there were only middle seats, one behind the other, left, but if I wanted to pay for 2 seats together they could put us in an exit row. Generally I would not even consider doing that, I mean, we already bought our tickets, but since both flights are 3 or more hours long and we do want to sit together, I spent the money.
So, LESSON TO BE LEARNED: if you buy airline tickets through Expedia or a similar site, call the airline right away for your seat assignment!
NOTE: Delta has the best customer service I’ve ever experienced.

As we drove to work this morning, Jeff said that he could feel stress melting away and that he felt like he “is going home to Costa Rica.” ┬áHence, the blog title.

We left work early today because before we leave tomorrow I need to mow the lawn, we need to finish painting the kitchen (long story there) and PACK! It is also Jeff’s mom’s birthday so we need to work her into the mix…

Success! Everything has been accomplished, including an unexpected meeting with the “granite guy” (part of the long story) when he swung by the house.

Tomorrow we leave.

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