Tuesday, August 22, 2017

There is a "me" in Costa Rica

We quickly set in pretty swimmingly (literally every day and many days multiple times daily) when we first arrived. Willa was in a local camp here, CREAR, which runs during the mid-year school break, and she began her school the following Monday in mid-July. We sorted through our long term rental situation, and Marla and I each then took a couple weeks of Spanish classes, more in fact for Marla who is still continuing. Our language school Intercultura provides world class education with a deliberate focus on Costa Rican history and culture. Completing each class it has become progressively easier to have a richer experience here in Sámara. I took a couple cooking classes, which is an offering at school's kitchen each week, and I learned how to make yuca tortas and picadillo.

There are the occasional shrieks in the morning like when a crab was in the house the other day. We have worked on an ant encroachment into the house a couple times. Dislodging about a dozen wasps nests arounds the eaves took some efforts by our landlord the other week. While taking out our green waste the other day, which included some head to tail fish bodies Willa and I drew the attention of a racoon; the bandit started trailing about 10 feet behind us; thankfully, tossing the food waste into the horse field beside our house, the usual target, sent the racoon racing to get to the fishy remains first. Occasionally, a golf ball sized beetle will slam itself into the sliding door at night. We may have been reading and the slam jolts us back to the surface of our immediate surroundings.

This blog post for one was paused recently while I was writing poolside comfortably in the afternoon shade. Marla was reading and Willa watching a great new show, Tumble Leaf. There I was enjoying a nice quiet moment, and a yellow tailed wasp (they're the more aggressive lot compared with their all black brethren), and it started giving me a full body scan like a disgruntled TSA agent. I stood up, and the scan persisted seemingly even closer than before. Well, I was having none of it, and inside I went. One thing I most certainly do not want to experience here is how badly my body will react to a yellow wasp sting.

At our new house things went a bit south with the pool after an algae bloom kicked up. Ten days and many visits from the guys tending to the pool later it's back to looking crystal clear. Separately, it took a handful of visits from the landlord to work out all the kinks of the new house squeaks here, clogged drain there, missed times to connect on issues, and so forth. Everyone has been extremely helpful and able to do much with every contact we have had.

Dropping Willa off at school the other day I observed the metal shop immediately adjacent kicking out welding sparks. I became concerned because kids just like us adults have a very difficult time looking away from the allure of the blue glow. Much like yesterday's total eclipse starring right at it is an opthamologist's nightmare. After suggesting a couple ideas to the school a few friends and I are working on creating a "screen" to shield the kids' eyes. This was a necessary distraction from getting to my sabbatical business. We're far along now and will hopefully wrap it up in the next couple days.

All this is to say that I somewhat anticipated sabbatical to be a bit more readily apparent with vast swaths of free time to work on me projects. There are a few areas of study that I need to make a plan for, and then carve out and execute on that time squarely among the needs presented in renting a house abroad, parenting an energetic fournado, and all the daily life maintenance needs. That said my long wait for Game of Thrones season 6 is over. I signed up for HBO Now yesterday and binged through the first six episodes. I'm ready for Sunday's epic finale.

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