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March 3, 2011 / puravida2011

Heading home

This is our last full day in Cocles. Tomorrow morning we take the shuttle back to San Jose, where we’ll visit the Gold and Jade Museums, spend the night in a downtown hotel, and head to the airport tomorrow in the late morning. The sun is shining today and Chico and I had a nice walk on the beach and a good bike ride into Puerto this morning. We did a bit of hand-washing and are aghast at the mildew that is thriving on the clothes that have been sitting in the closet for the past few weeks. This wet air is not a good mix with cotton clothing.

Which brings us to the list of things we’re looking forward to at home (to avoid too much melancholy in leaving the beautiful beach, vibrant vegetation and warm weather!). At the top of our list (aside from the people and pets we’re looking forward to seeing, of course) is our almost brand new front loading washer and dryer. Hand-washing is kind of fun and rewarding, but the results are not great. Our washer at home has a sanitizing feature and I fear all of our clothes will need a major sanitizing when we get home.

Second on the list is our kitchen pots, pans, and gadgets. This house actually has a nicer blender than what we have at home, but everything else is barely adequate. Our big cast iron skillet, the new All Clad wok, our garlic press, these are among the things we’ve missed.

I am looking forward to drying my hair. My hair has quite literally almost never been dry for the past two months. Between the pool, the beach, the showers, the humidity, and the lack of dryers there is always some moisture there. It’s surprising to me that my head hasn’t mildewed. Chico does not have this problem. His hair is dry as soon as he towels off.

I’m looking forward to sharing my home with fewer wild creatures than we have been living with down here. With open walls we get lots of critters in our digs. We came back from the beach just now to find a 5 foot bright green vine snake climbing up the stairs to the bedroom. And though I tolerate the bats zipping around just after sundown while we’re watching our evening television, I really only barely tolerate them. I have to kind of hide my face in Chico’s shoulder sometimes. Every night for three nights in a row this week Chico had a seriously large insect show up on his pillow as we were settling down for bed. Not just kind of big but palm-sized. Gets the adrenaline going just as you’re trying to settle down. And there are small insects everywhere that we just have had to learn to live with: tiny sugar ants on the counters, fruit flies zipping around the kitchen even though we take out all of our compostables as soon as we produce them, large kind of stupid mosquitoes that I don’t think actually bite people, small mosquitoes that do get you when you’re not looking. I’m surprised at how we’ve taken these things in stride, considering how I freak out at home over a single spider on the bedroom ceiling.

Chico is looking forward to having sports channels on t.v. that show something other than soccer. March Madness and spring training are in the offing when we get home!

And here’s the list of things we’ll miss most.
We have really enjoyed not driving for two months (though Chico has been ogling the hybrid and plug-in electric cars on line from time to time). On both coasts we’ve been able to walk, bike or take buses to get everywhere. This has been great.
We love having fresh, local produce that is flavorful and delicious even in January and February.
It has been really wonderful to put away our watches and just live each day on our own schedule: waking with the howler monkeys, eating when we’re hungry, sleeping when we’re tired. I really feel like my internal clock has been recalibrated.
We love the sounds of the birds, bugs and critters that are a constant soundtrack here, day and night. We have little geckos that live in the house and make a funny chirping sound that I like. They eat bugs so are welcome house guests.
Of course it has been great to be mostly barefoot, to wear mostly bathing suits, to read mostly fluff (RT has read mostly fluff, anyway; Chico has read a lot of serious stuff, too).
I have loved walking on the beach. I was able to walk all the way down beyond Manzanillo one day, which was almost 15 miles round trip. The scenery is stunning and I had no idea I was going such a long distance. My feet were a bit tired by the end though…

Okay, I think that’s it. We have lots more pictures we’ll bore some of you with at home in the weeks ahead. It has been a wonderful, restorative eight weeks for both of us! We look forward to telling you more about it in person.
Pura vida, all!

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2 Comments

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  1. Ann / Mar 3 2011 3:54 pm

    I hope you have a safe trip home. I look forward to seeing all your pictures!!

  2. Carmena B. Zimmerman / Mar 7 2011 6:08 pm

    Wahhhh… Im going to miss your blogs full of beautiful photos and weather and special trips and exotic foods and sights. I really learned a lot about Costa Rica from you two. Your memories will last a lifetime and a dreamy faraway expression will come to your face often, now, spontaneously…
    and you will smile- like Mona Lisa–and only you will know why. Another great feeling will come upon you when you drive up the winding, snowy (?) driveway of 8967 90th Court Way, Northfield, Mn. and
    one of you will turn to the other and gasp:”I dont think we’re in Costa Rica anymore.” When you open
    your front door and step inside, click your heels together and Shout: ” There’s no place like home!-
    there’s no place like home!! And the walls of your house will echo–Welcome back, Welcome back! And I welcome you back also…Big Hugs Mom Z

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