|Out for our first walk|
We moved into our new place early last week and almost immediately had to vacate the premises so the new maid could do her work. (It’s awkward to hang around while someone is cleaning your house, you know? But her weekly services are included in the rent, so I’m not complaining!) The next day we had company over for dinner. Our friends Jackie and Neil just moved in down the road from us so we all enjoyed guacamole and hamburgers as we shared our adventures in moving. The day after that, we took the bus into San Jose to pick up our friend Marcy, here for dental work with my own dental implant hero, Dr. Alberto Meza. That weekend we had dinner guests both Saturday and Sunday evenings, meaning lots of work for the cook and dishwasher. That would be me and Layne, in that order. On Monday Layne escorted Marcy back to San Jose for more time with Dr. Meza and I began preparations (translation: liquid diet) for a routine colonoscopy while I worked on my column for The Costa Rica News, deadlined the day after that fun procedure. That would be today. Whew! Busy is a four-letter word.
So now the column is turned in and Marcy is still in the city so I’ll try to entertain you readers with our latest escapades. While we were packing to move, the annual Halloween party at Kay’s Gringo Postre rolled around and we simply had to go, albeit without much in the way of costumes. Layne did manage to stick a “Press” card in his hat, sling his fancy camera over his shoulders and tie a sign around his neck saying: “The Gringo Gazette -- Yesterday’s News Tomorrow!” I put my hair up in a sparkly butterfly clip, donned a short kimono-style jacket and called myself Madame Butterfly. Pretty lame but the best I could do in the midst of a move.
It was a festive gathering with lots of great costumes. It’s amazing what people here can come up with. Some folks, like our friend Nancy, are so into Halloween that they brought costumes from the U.S. when they moved here. Nancy had a terrific Dorothy from the “Wizard of Oz” outfit on -- pigtailed wig, checkered pinafore, carrying her small fluffy dog, dubbed Toto for the evening. She even had the perfect sequined red pumps to click her heels together and complete the picture. But the big winners of the costume contest were Patricia and Kevin, dressed up in elaborate “Psycho” garb, complete with a PVC pipe and tinsel “shower” atop Patricia’s head, “blood” dripping down her shoulders. Kevin topped off the scene dressed as the psychotic Anthony Perkins in dowdy dress and gray wig, totting a big gory knife. It was hilarious!
The move to the new house went smoothly enough, although we were shocked to need three pickup truck taxi trips to carry things up to Santa Eulalia. Shocked because, after all, we moved to Costa Rica less than two years ago in a couple of big suitcases. Where has all this “stuff” come from? Fortunately, our new place has an abundance of storage space, including a secure and dry concrete basement under the rancho so everything is now in its proper place and we still have a few empty drawers. It seems that, just like in our old apartment, we have gotten lucky here with some great landlords in Isaac and Sonia. They have been very solicitous in asking us if everything is to our satisfaction, adding a fire extinguisher, a bell on our gate to announce guests and trying to get the phone jack in our bedroom to work. Yesterday Sonia even brought over some delicious corn pancakes topped with natilla (sour cream) when we returned from the hospital. Their little dog Chispa (Spark), a sweet Miniature Pinscher, comes for a visit now and then, giving us the pleasures of a dog to pet without the responsibility. All in all, we’re very happy here so far.
|Horses in the 'Hood|
|Shade-grown Costa Rican Coffee|
We are enjoying the beautiful country roads we have for our morning walks. Spotted with patches of sugarcane, peanuts, corn and coffee between charming Tico houses, the area is an agricultural cornucopia. Little did I know that sugarcane sprouts a huge feathery flower on top when ripening.
|Se Vende = For Sale|
If you’re interested in living next door to a peanut patch, then this lot for sale on one of the side roads might be just the one for you.
All the neighbors have been friendly, as are most Ticos, and we look forward to practicing our Spanish along the way. Already we’ve met and chatted with several Ticos as we were waiting at the bus stop for our “shuttle” into town. The bus drivers know us now so we no longer have to show our cedula (residency card) to ride for free. It seems to be a serious case of Pura Vida in Santa Eulalia de Atenas!