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  1. #1
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    Default Experiences Living in Zona Colonial

    I've spent about 2 1/2 months in the Colonial Zone earlier this year. For the most part I liked it, but at times it felt like a small town with everyone knowing your business and as a tourist I was constantly asked for money on the streets. The building I stayed in though was excellent. The management actually has an office there and I never had problems and felt safe.

    Sunday I return for at least 6 months. I've decided to stay in the same apartment building even though in some ways I'd prefer a less touristy area. I was wondering what other have experienceed living in the Colonial Zone or if you haven't lived there would you or wouldn't you and why. My main concern is learning how to say "no" to the beggars and to find public transportation along the Malecon. I actually prefer guaguas to taxis.

    When I returned to NYC a couple of months ago I felt very sad to leave SD. Now that I'm taking the 6 month plunge, living in SD, I have butterflies in my stomach. Not sure why. As for work I'm hoping to teach English. I'd prefer that to a call center.

  2. #2
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    KJS,

    Good luck, and have fun. Would love to read about your adventures (and misadventures), so please post often.

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  4. #3
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    When people see you as a regular on the streets they will stop asking for money. I knew by your other thread you would return very soon. A lot of people do not like the CZ but I really enjoy the CZ.

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  6. #4
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    Don't worry!!!
    "And This Too Shall Pass!"
    When I was 45,(20 years ago,"My God")
    I decided to get the DR out of my system.Before that,I only came once or twice a year.
    I came every moth for a week to 3 weeks.
    I knew every prostitute in Boca Chica,and SD by her "Real" name.
    And all her relatives too.
    I spent about $30,000 US that "rear", I mean YEAR!
    My plan baackfired! BIG TIME!!
    Each time I returned to Boston I had panic attacts.
    I saw a psychiatrist at Mass General Hospital.He gave me Prozac.He said it would lower my "libido".Again a failure.
    All he wanted me to talk about,in GREAT DETAIL,was evert sexual encounter I had in the DR.He should have paid me!
    I desided it would be cheaper to take early retirement than to continue going back and forth.
    It wasn't,who knew????
    Funny thing happened,I was offered a great job in the medical field,and workrd there for ten years.
    My point is: "Go For It!"
    We find excuses not to cut-the-cord and go.
    You will be just fine.
    My only advice is,Ala Hillbilly,Don't hang out with the low life street people.And don't try to become a Dominican.You can't,and never will.
    Dominicans can tell when you try.
    They prefer foreigners who live here,make friends, andTRY to understand their culture.but not Dominican Wannabes.
    They look at you as a clown when you try to act "Dominicanisado".
    Be the great guy you were at "Home" and you can make real friends,not just a bunch of Takers.
    Took me a long time to figure that out.
    Good luck,and use DR1 as your "touch stone" for advice,and friendship.
    You won't go wrong.
    CC

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  8. #5
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    Thanks everyone for the encouragement!

    Interestingly Chris, when I came back to NYC I saw a psych who put me on meds due to feeling very depressed after returning from DR. I'm wondering if I'll still need them when I return to DR. Did you stay on the Prozac or didn't you find your depression lifted upon return to DR?

  9. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by KJS73 View Post
    Thanks everyone for the encouragement!

    Interestingly Chris, when I came back to NYC I saw a psych who put me on meds due to feeling very depressed after returning from DR. I'm wondering if I'll still need them when I return to DR. Did you stay on the Prozac or didn't you find your depression lifted upon return to DR?
    If you had read CC's posts over the years you would know that his depression was not the only thing that lifted when he got back to the DR.

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  11. #7
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    To give or not to give on the street- always a difficult decision for foreigners in the DR. My decision- I do not give money on the street- ever, to people asking me. There are countless other ways to help those less fortunate in the DR. After so many years here and much refection, I believe giving on the street is more a negative than a positive for DR society overall

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  13. #8
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    Great advice Kozy!

    My friends have conflicting opinions regarding me living in DR. One is very supportive. The other said, "I'm not doing the adult thing. That I should go to Costa Rica or Colombia, where I'm more likely to find work teaching English." That would be fine but I already have made a personal connection with DR. I have Dominican friends in Santo Domingo poor and well off as well as some expats. I feel giving DR a shot for at least 6 months will not break me. I am fortunate to afford to take some risks. If it doesn't work out the US and those other countries will always be there.

  14. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by KJS73 View Post
    Great advice Kozy!

    My friends have conflicting opinions regarding me living in DR. One is very supportive. The other said, "I'm not doing the adult thing. That I should go to Costa Rica or Colombia, where I'm more likely to find work teaching English." That would be fine but I already have made a personal connection with DR. I have Dominican friends in Santo Domingo poor and well off as well as some expats. I feel giving DR a shot for at least 6 months will not break me. I am fortunate to afford to take some risks. If it doesn't work out the US and those other countries will always be there.
    It's your life, and time goes faster than you think. If your plan was to retire and live off your income there, I'd say yeah, they have a point. But your plan is to do only six months there, off your income.

  15. #10
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    Don't give money to people on the street because sometimes they can be mugger and just want to see how much money you have in your pocket so that they mug you. Always carry small bills and never show large sum of cash, if you have to pay for something and you have a large sum of cash in the same pocket ask to use the bathroom to pull the small bills out.
    I am a Dominican and my advice to you like someone say, don't hang out with the low life because is very danger and you could get yourself in trouble very easy. Try to hang out with people that have some education and that have jobs. You can recognize when a Dominican just want to be around you because you buying because when you buy 2 or 3 drinks they should be able to a least buy one and if they don't walk away

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