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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Oregon: To Escape From the Rain?

Abuela bugs in a swarm

Yigüirro birds are everywhere so I guess it’s official: the rainy season is upon us. Or as it is euphemistically known here, the “green season,” a term coined no doubt by the tourist industry. Of course, it is true that in coming months the whole country will be transformed into the greenest of greens, with flowers blooming and jungle canopies dripping with humidity, the exact image of a tropical paradise.

Yesterday afternoon the thunder and lightning began booming and blazing around us and a torrential downpour pelted the ground. Other than unplugging our laptops to avoid a power surge, Layne and I continued on with our work, unconcerned with the weather. But soon our upstairs neighbor Linda called to point out a unique phenomenon happening outside. At the first rain, she said, the abuela or grandmother bugs swarm and we should close our doors so they would not get inside. We looked out the window and were amazed to see a shimmering cloud of black bugs flying helter-skelter in the air just off our front porch. I tried but found it exceedingly difficult to get a good picture of the multitude of small insects doing their frantic seasonal thing in the rain. If you click to enlarge the photo here, you might get some idea of what a bizarre event this was.

Today the weather pattern is much the same as yesterday -- sunny and warm in the morning becoming muggy by mid-day, turning into rain by the afternoon. It seems like a good time to head back to the United States for a visit. Portland, Oregon, should be nice this time of year even though Texas, our other destination, is likely to be insufferably hot and humid. But part of the plan for our retirement here in Costa Rica was annual trips back to see family, so the rainy season seems like a good time to go.

Before we leave the country in mid-May, we plan to look at other housing options for when we return. We love so much about this apartment it’s very hard to consider giving it up but when we have company a one-bedroom apartment is too small for comfort. Now granted, we have not had much company so far but we are hoping to be a magnet for friends and family who would like to experience the beauty of Costa Rica without incurring big hotel bills.

An iguana neighbor

A resident gecko
Looking at other houses makes us really appreciate this place, however. The cleanliness, modern appliances, comfortable bed, nice furniture and swimming pool all make for a pleasant living arrangement. Plus, we are within walking distance of town but have the jungle right outside our doors. This offers us the enchantment of having wild things pay us a visit. This big iguana was wandering around the backyard recently and seemed happy to stop and pose for me on a log. We have our own little clutch of geckos keeping insects under control indoors. When our friends Sue and Christine were visiting, they enjoyed the rare experience of a horde of capuchin monkeys migrating through the trees out front. Toucans fly by, as do flocks of emerald green parrots, squawking loudly in flight. Even the nightly moonrise is spectacular here. And as for landlords, well, Odie and Eduardo are unbeatable. So we’ll see. If we don’t find a more perfect place that this, we will stay here and figure out other accommodations for guests.

Meanwhile, our residency has been approved! Tomorrow we go to Migracion to have photos taken for our cedulas, and we hope to receive them by mail before our departure date in mid-May. Having started this process just about one year ago, sending the completed documents to our attorney last July, we are quite pleased with the approval of our application in this time frame. At last we’re legal. Pura Vida!  

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