Brilliant! The Book

Because it was a special week, I’m doing a second book on Xandari where I celebrated my birthday last week. It was such a colorful week, I titled it “Brilliant!” Follow the link to a free online preview of the book showing 82 of my photos. Or click this smaller image of the book cover below:

Brilliant Book cover
Click cover to Preview the book online.

Also see the 2019 Trip Gallery for this week. 

Or the older 2018 Xandari Trip Gallery

And my photo book for that year’s visit titled Xandari Enchanted by Nature

A truly amazing place!

Xandari Nature Resort

¡Pura Vida!

Floating Free of Time

The following statement about hummingbirds was included as an insert in a Papyrus Birthday Card I received from my sister Bonnie who said the card reminded her of me “getting the most out of life!”  (Thank you Bonnie!) And the above photo is a Rufous-tailed Hummingbird photographed this past week at Xandari Nature Resort, Costa Rica, “floating” above a flower just outside my room.

Legends say that hummingbirds float free of time, carrying out hopes for love, joy and celebration. The hummingbird’s delicate grace reminds us that life is rich, beauty is everywhere, every personal connection has meaning and that laughter is life’s sweetest creation.     ~Papyrus

The card itself continued the theme with . . .

DREAM BIG

LAUGH LOTS

BE AMAZING

LIVE WELL

EXPLORE LIFE

ADVENTURE ON

Enjoy every extraordinary moment! Happy Birthday!     ~Papyrus

And so the hummingbird inspires us to get the most out of life! I hope that is what you are doing! Enjoy life!    🙂

And here is another hummingbird that seems to be “floating” a little more than the above one. He is a Green-breasted Mango Hummingbird female at Dave & Dave’s Nature Center of Sarapiquí, La Virgen, Costa Rica shot on my 2016 Trip to Selva Verde Sarapiqui.

Have another great day!

Charlie — Retired in Costa Rica

And see more hummingbirds in my BIRDS photo gallery.

¡Pura Vida!

🙂

Xandari Flowers

Xandari has one of the best flower gardens of many in Costa Rica and I would be hard-pressed to name any one as THE best – but this one does a great job and here you can browse through about 40 species blooming there this month (that changes month to month!) and I will do a separate post of “other plants,” seeds, fruit and even interesting leaves! So much beauty in any garden! As always, click an image to enlarge it or in this format to start a manual slide show.

Xandari Flowers

 

Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food and medicine for the soul.
– Luther Burbank

 

I will be starting work on my Xandari 2019 Trip Gallery today but give me a week to complete it – lots of photos!   🙂   In the meantime, check out my other trip galleries which I egotistically consider amazing!   🙂   OR specifically . . .  the Xandari 2018 Trip Gallery where I showed more of the architecture & Art than this year. It is one of my favorite hotels!

And/or check out my other flower photos in the gallery Flora and Forest.

Xandari Nature Resort

¡Pura Vida!

Flying Saucer Has Landed!

Sorry guys! But it sort of looks like what we used to call a “Flying Saucer” in the States when UFOs were a big thing there!   🙂

Trim 1st then remove.

This is just my occasional UPDATE on the progress on the REMODELING OF CENTRAL PARK ATENAS – excruciatingly slow to me! This big round metal thing will be the “Kiosk” or Band Shell or Stage in the center of the park. (See link to pictures of it at bottom of post.) It will be great for “Theater in the Round.”

They still have to redo the landscaping and add new benches, picnic tables and some recreation items. Maybe the landscaping has started with the cutting down of several big trees. Hard to tell. And the underside of that kiosk roof is going to have artwork added, so still a ways to go there too. Here’s shots of 3 stages of the kiosk in the last 4 days – faster than usual progress:

20190625_113257-WEB
25 June 2019
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25 June 2019
20190628_100335-A-WEB
28 June 2019

All images are cell phone photos by Charlie Doggett.

 

The city has  a Facebook Page presenting the remodeling with architect drawings of how they expect it to look. Nice! The vision of an architect! AND BEST VIEWED AS A MANUAL SLIDESHOW! Click on a picture, then the right or left arrows.

¡Pura Vida!

Macaw Lodge Photo Gallery

I completed my “Trip Gallery” of the 6 nights at Macaw Lodge, Carara National Park, Costa Rica. It is another fabulous nature retreat in Costa Rica and I hope you check out some of the photos I have posted. You can click the print screen image below or this web address:  https://charliedoggett.smugmug.com/TRIPS/2019-06-18-24-Macaw-Lodge

2019-06-27
Click gallery page above to visit it.

“A great photograph is a full expression of what one feels.”
— Ansel Adams

Macaw Lodge Website

¡Pura Vida!

“3 Little Things”

Yesterday morning as I started to walk to town it was raining, thus I took a taxi. So I had to walk back from town since that is my only exercise here! With only a tiny sprinkle occasionally, I enjoyed these wet “3 little things” along the way and here are my shots of one day’s “eye candy” in little Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica.

Wet Passion Flower in someone’s yard
Nasty Storm Sewer Waterfall along the way – But sort of pretty!   🙂
Central Park Progress? They keep welding more pieces to the future band shell. But now the rainy season will slow progress even more. In the meantime my landlord has nearly completed a whole house! 🙂   Our government at work! Slowly!    🙂 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Surprise WhatsApp Message Today

MonteverdeThis morning I received a WhatsApp Voice Message with the above photo from Rodiber, my guide at Monteverde last month. He was thanking me profusely for the autographed copy of my Monteverde photo book for himself, Costa Rica Expeditions (who service this hotel) and the hotel Monteverde Lodge & Gardens. The girl in photo is one of the several front desk persons who were all very helpful to me during my stay. I sent two copies of book, one for my guide and one for the hotel to use at front desk, in lobby or in their little loaner-library of books for guests.

Since I make a book for most of my trips or the first trip to a lodge, I usually send two books like this. I just concluded my second trip to Selva Verde Lodge and right now not planning a second book. Their two guides on my first visit plus the front desk got copies of my 2016 Selva Verde trip book.

I really enjoy surprising my hosts in thanks for a good experience with the little photo books – not something they expect nor receive from other guests. This is the first one to send me a photo with their thank-you note. A surprise for me now! My response was the typical Costa Rican response to a “Thank You!” which is ¡Con mucho gusto! “With much pleasure!” Ticos are such beautiful people!     🙂

Art must take reality by surprise.

Francoise Sagan

¡Pura Vida!

Art is 1 Reason for San Jose Visits

I decided early in my visiting of Costa Rica to not live in the big capital city of San Jose because I wanted a more tranquil retirement life than most big cities can provide in their, busy, hectic, crowded, expensive and sometimes dangerous ways.

My first choice was always to live in the woods away from everything, but that would require an expensive 4WD car which I early decided I would do without plus in many cases it is actually more expensive, plus generally no where near the needed shopping and medical care a retiree needs.

Thus the “happy medium” or compromise location of the “Central Valley” of Costa Rica within easy bus or other transportation to the best shopping and medical facilities in the country (like most retirees to CR), yet still a somewhat easy trip to escape into the national parks and forests of Costa Rica which has worked well for me. And nature in the far corners of Costa Rica continues to be my focus.   🙂

BUT . . . sometimes there are fun reasons to visit the big city and especially an old, historic and artsy Latin-American city like San Jose (see my Trip Galleries below). Christopher Howard also explains it well in one of his latest blog posts:

Why Expat Retirees Shouldn’t Ignore Costa Rica’s Capital

And in that article you can see why I love the many parks in the city, plus the architecture, a tour I made of just the old colonial churches, the arts, the many museums, art in general and as shown here, as an example, some of the many public art sculptures in San Jose:

 

See my photo gallery San Jose     and/or

My SAN JOSE TRIP GALLERIES: 

San Jose Tented Production of the Cirque du Soleil

¡Pura Vida!

FLOWERS de Selva Verde

God’s artistry is different in each and every little blossom and so I continue to show photos of flowers from almost everywhere I visit. Enjoy the photos below as what I call “Nature As Art!” – the name of my short-lived photo business in the states.

Selva Verde Flowers

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Considering a Move to Costa Rica?

If you are one of those readers considering living here or retiring here, I strongly encourage you to get acquainted with the ARCR, Association of Residents of Costa Rica, who will become your best help as you consider and then plan for a move here, with their two-day seminar an absolute necessity for your preparation. In the meantime you might want to consider joining now and receiving the bi-monthly digital magazine El Residente. Hoping that link gets you to the current edition without membership, so you can see all the interesting & helpful articles other expats here write every two months.

And by the way, for those keeping up with me I got back from Selva Verde Wednesday afternoon with a doctor appointment Thursday afternoon and back into life in Atenas when not on a trip. I’m also finishing up my reports on Selva Verde, a good hotel/lodge for nature lovers!

¡Pura Vida!