Day #233 in lockdown in Mumbai, India hotel…Costa Rica?…Is it a possibility, just in case?…

On a rainy day in the town of Zarcero at the Senor Scissorhands Topiary Garden.

Today’s photos are from this date while living in Atenas, Costa Rica, in 2017 for almost four months. For the story and more photos from this date, please click here.

It isn’t easy to relate to the fact that it was only three years ago we were living in Atenas, Costa Rica, in a fabulous house with more rooms and space than we could ever use. We spent our days in the pool and hot tub, dined at the massive dining room table, and spent our evenings in the well-equipped “viewing room.” We went sightseeing, on tours and took thousands of photos, mainly of exotic birds.

Another of Tom’s wonderful bird photos, in this case, a small Green Parrot.

Oh, what I’d give to be back at that house, to swim in that pool, to cook in that exceptional kitchen, and dine at the big dining room table. The nearby market was well stocked with everything we could want or need, with lots of grass-fed meat, free-range chickens and eggs, locally grown coffee, and fabulous imported cheeses.

Recently, I contacted our old friends, Barb and Sam, the lovely owners of that beautiful villa, and they’d happily make it work for us if we were to return. When looking at their listing online, found here, we see there is availability in the off-season, which works well for us. Would we consider traveling there shortly if South Africa doesn’t open its borders by a specific date yet to be determined?

It was fun to walk under the topiary arches.

We would. Unfortunately, getting it is tricky from India, requiring 33 hours of travel time, lots of plane changes, COVID-19 checks, and endless requirements to be allowed into the country, which surely will be the case anywhere we go in the world. As it turns out, most future flights out of India required leaving the hotel for the Mumbai airport three to four hours before the first flight, always in the middle of the night. Subsequently, we’ll have two nights without sleep. This isn’t easy, by no means.

Our best bet would be to fly business class with seats that lay down into full-length beds with good pillows and blankets. Realistically, this would be the only way of making such a long trip that would work for us. We can manage not sleeping for one 24-hour period, but not for two nights in a row.

The door to Senor Scissorhands Topiary Garden.

When we flew from South Africa to Ireland in May 2019, three months after having open-heart surgery, we booked a business class flight for me while Tom stayed in the coach section. The extra cost to upgrade is about US $2000, INR 148,500 per person. It may be worth it to us when we try to get out of here, in any case, with travel times to anywhere we’d like to go (airport to airport) more than 24 hours.

Since we haven’t been on cruises or rented any cars since October 2019, this added expense fits our annual budget. Knowing we’ll do this, if possible, gives me considerable peace of mind, regardless of where we travel from here. Of course, there are many conditions we need to investigate to be able to leave Mumbai, such as; can we use our ability to fly to the USA now as a means of us flying to such countries as Costa Rica? After all, right now, if we wanted to, we could fly to Dallas and grab a flight from Dallas to Costa Rica if necessary.

Basilica Nuestra Senora de las Piedades in Naranjo, Costa Rica.

Have we set a timeline to leave India if South Africa’s borders don’t open? Not yet. We’re still holding onto the hope to go to South Africa before anywhere else in the world. We have a certain degree of apprehension about flying to so many airports and on so many flights, in light of COVID-19.

Can we last, holding out here, until February or March? We both think we can hold out. At this point, based on our routine, time seems to be passing quickly. March is only four months away. But, March will be one year we’ve been in this hotel room. That’s a little hard to digest.

When we think about spending the upcoming holidays in this hotel room, we cringe a little. We’re OK. But we know we can handle it. We’ve been through worse situations in the past. We’re safe, feeling well, and always working on our total well-being, physically, mentally, and spiritually.

We hope you are OK, too!

Photo from one year ago today, November 11, 2019:

Out to dinner at Stella’s Fish House with son Greg; and DIL Camille’s family, charming granddaughter Maisie sat next to me. Please scroll down for more the year ago grandchildren photos. For more, please click here.
Introspective grandson Miles wasn’t interested in fish and had a burger instead.
Always-smiling Madighan loved being with her family and eating seafood along with a taste of Grandpa’s barbeque ribs (who, like Miles, didn’t eat fish).