Sunday, January 18, 2015

Somewhere over the rainbow...

In the short time I've been in Costa Rica, I've seen about 5 rainbows, like this one I frequently see while I'm waiting at the bus stop.

Not only does Costa Rica have rainbows, but it also has lots of butterflies, including the very friendly one that lighted on my arm at a butterfly garden and slowly climbed its way to my chest

where it was getting a little too friendly for my comfort.

Costa Rica seems a lot like heaven, I tried to tell Ricardo the bus driver on my Saturday tour, using the word "cielo".  He kindly corrected me, calling it "paraĆ­so" (paradise) and then asked if he could speak to me in English while I spoke to him in Spanish for practice.  When I asked him where he learned English, he replied "just from listening to bilingual tours every day". 
There's lots of awesome people here, who when they learn that I'll be living here for 2 years and that I'm trying to learn Spanish, kindly correct my mistakes and give me little lessons.  Here's a photo of my guide Mario giving me a language lesson yesterday...the only problem was that he doesn't know the grammar rules (like most native speakers don't...since they just know what sounds right or wrong).  When he told me that the use of "para" or "por" depended upon the gender of an object, I was pretty sure he was wrong and showed him the very detailed rules I had noted in my book, and he said "Wow!  I never knew all that!"  But he gets points for a good heart.  And he gets points for actually being able to speak the language.  And I believed him when he corrected me in my speech.

One day when I told my host family that I wouldn't be joining them for dinner the following day because my classmates wanted to go to a restaurant, they kindly spent 20 minutes drawing a map and giving me detailed directions to their favorite restaurant.  So of course my classmates and I went there!  And it was wonderful.

And I continue to enjoy seeing my sweet host parents play with their grandson.

And having neighbors bring over packets of the San Lucia herb to give us good luck for the new year.

Not everybody here is "buena gente" (good people).  I did have about $40 stolen out of my jacket pocket at the gym, so I'll be more careful in the future.  But I'm finding that there's lots to love about Costa Rica and Costa Ricans.

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