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Friday, April 27, 2012

Climate Fair and Parade of the Boyeros, Atenas

This coming weekend in Atenas is the Climate Fair and the Parade of the Boyeros (oxcart drivers). This will be the first time we've seen the oxcarts so we are looking forward to it and I'll take lots of photos.

From Friday through to Sunday there will be many different activities held in the Parque Central de Atenas - DJ music, dancing, the boyero (oxcart driver) parade, food - something for everyone.

The oxcarts have a long and interesting history in Costa Rica.

Also on Sunday is the grand opening fiesta of CC's Chinese International Restaurant and Bar, in front of the  Plaza de Deportes (Sports Plaza) de Barrio Los Angeles. We're going to drop in here also because they are offering a special all day buffet and I just have to see what they will be offering!

Totally unrelated to all these activities, here is one of the sweet peppers growing in my little garden:

I picked it today - it had turned a lovely red shade.

And, finally, here is a nice spider that needs to be identified! It was on our patio.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Grecia and Sarchi

Today our fellow Canuck friends took us to Grecia and Sarchi to check out these towns'  Ropa Americana stores. I found a nice pair of pale yellow Jones Wear cotton shorts and a soft Indian cotton camp shirt with grey, green, rose and yellow flower patterns. Cost was ¢2,000 each, about $8.00 CAD total.

Expats in Costa Rica know all about shopping at Ropa Americana - you never know what treasures will be unearthed.

We had lunch at Restaurante La Finca in Sarchi. The setting is lovely, overlooking hills of coffee plants. I ordered the three sauce sea bass and it was excellent. Portions are large and mine included rice and salad, plus I had two frutas mixtas (natural mixed fruit drinks) which I just can't get enough of.

Entrance to La Finca

View from our table

An afternoon thunderstorm started on the drive home and the air smelled so wonderful, earthy and warm.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Yes! We Have Lots of Bananas ....

I just checked the berm wall and now there are 11 bananas! Here's a picture from two days ago when there were five:

Our gardener, José, has solved the mystery for us. He sighted straight up from the fallen bananas to our neighbor's property - they are at a higher elevation - and found a tree loaded with ripe bananas. He said the birds pick them and pointed out the claw marks in the fruit. But why they drop them in the same spot is still a mystery to me. They are all gradually being eaten.

They don't fall and roll down to us because there is a fence between the properties.

Always something interesting happening in this country.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

The Plåtano Mystery

First, one banana appeared on the berm wall at the back of our house. We do not have any bananas on our trees at present. Perhaps the neighbors do but how did the banana get there?

Then, another one appeared on the second day - right beside the first one.

How the heck did they get there?

Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Eleventh Month

April, 2012, marks our eleventh month experiencing fabulous Costa Rica. May 31st will be our one year anniversary. We love it here so much.

We moved here in the green season, have experienced the dry season and are now moving into the green season once more. This week brought several thunderstorms in the afternoon and desperately needed rain. We unplug the electronics when the lightning starts and sit outside and enjoy the free show. Genny goes into her Thunder Closet of course, but I think she is a bit more relaxed about the storms then when we first arrived.

Last week, we lost our internet and satellite connections and were incommunicado and without computer access and TV entertainment for about five days. Even the house phone handset's batteries died but we were able to find a new bundled pack at a great little shop in the enclosed market area in Atenas Centro. I'm sorry I don't know the name of the place but they sell jewelry, watch batteries, etc. It's near the butcher shops. They can weld eyeglasses back together if you break the side pieces (happened to us).  It's a Mum and Pop operation I think. They even hooked the battery pack wires up to the gizmo that snaps into the phone handset.

We think Cabletica turned our service off by mistake when they were working at a house across from us. Thanks goes to our landlady in Boston and Andrew at ReMax in Atenas for helping us with getting the account number and the right phone numbers to call at Cabletica - it took a while to get through the menu choices to the English option. Anyway, if it ever happens again we'll be able to call them right away and get back on line fast.

We used an internet cafe in Atenas to check our mail, and also enjoyed a breakfast at Kay's Gringo Postres while using their service. Lesson: chill out, find a temporary solution and all will be back to normal before long. It was a great opportunity to read in the hammock without distractions.

We are being serenaded by so many birds right now - it must be the breeding and nesting season. Our mango tree is loaded with mangoes and I think we'll be enjoying them before long. I've picked a couple of tomatoes from our plants and have some sweet peppers ripening. As an experiment, I planted what I hope are melon seeds and they have sent runners everywhere and putting out flowers. The orange tree is full of oranges.

I bought my first ever snorkel, mask and fins because I really want to snorkel in the ocean. Was fortunate to be able to practice in a friend's pool:

This week is also Semana Santa - Easter Holy Week - everything is shut down tight on April 5 and 6. Ley Seca is the "dry law" when the sale of alcohol is prohibited from dusk on April 4th to dawn on April 7th. I'm sure everyone stocks up ahead of time!