Celebrate Your Unique Talent Day (November 24): You may not be a basketball star or have the lead role in the school play, but you have a talent or two to celebrate. Maybe you can whistle every song on Taylor Swift’s new album. Or balance 27 stacked Legos on your fingertip. Whatever your talent, share it with friends and family today. 🙂 And I will continue to share my nature photography on this blog! 🙂
This past Friday was the 15th of September, Independence Day for Costa Rica, when in 1821 it shed the colonial rule of Spain. In this small but very significant little developing country, patriotism is big and almost everyone wears red, white & blue and many decorate their houses with banners and flags. I wore my national futbol (soccer) shirt, red, white & blue! 🙂
And almost every town of any size has a parade, usually featuring their local schools, and Atenas is no exception! 🙂 I have for several years now been photographing it most years (when not traveling) with galleries for those years included in my super-gallery: PEOPLE, FIESTAS & ARTS Costa Rica. Which of course now includes a gallery for this year’s 2023 Desfile del Día de la Independencia, Atenas. And here is a sample photo from each of the 7 sub-galleries in this year’s parade gallery . . .
Yesterday (July 9, 2023) I participated in a meeting of local artists with introductions and discussions on how we can increase local interest in the arts. It was held at the “Art House” downtown where a local couple give painting art lessons to all ages and are adding other teachers with different art skills, mostly Ticos participating there. The meeting was co-sponsored by the expat ladies who sponsor the “Just In Time for Christmas” Art Show each year. Plus a man was there who plans to open a little theatre in Atenas for plays and musicals, adding to the hopes for a growing “art community” in Atenas.
Those attending were about half Tico and half extranjeros or expats from all over the world. So it was a very interesting group and enjoyable to visit with after everyone introduced themselves with two interpreters available. Then we had a potluck brunch and visited with each other, when I particularly enjoyed a Tico young man and university student born in Atenas who is studying photography and he showed me his first photo books and shared about his work. Then near the end, Larry shared his drumming skills that led into a little impromptu jam session with others joining in. I am hopeful about the future of the arts in this small farming town! 🙂
Yes, I’m the funny-looking old man in the bright blue shirt! 🙂
My photo galleries relating to the arts in Costa Rica are mostly found in the folder labeled: PEOPLE, FIESTAS & ARTS Costa Rica with others in every trip gallery created because all lodges and hotels have art displayed! 🙂
Last night, Friday, was the first annual Christmas Parade in two years thanks to the Covid Pandemic and the people came out for that and the fiesta in Central Park. I got too many photos to share on the blog, so just a sampling here and then please go to my:
I’ve divided the good photos into 4 sub-galleries which you can go directly to from the link on the 4 pix below representing the sub galleries. First a photo of the church just before dark and the beginning of the light parade, then the sample photos . . .
Yesterday I walked to town on a couple of errands, getting another butterfly at 3rd & 8th Ave garden enroute – accomplished my errands – heard some music and then saw the dancers in Central Park, dancing to the music of our town’s “Old Men” Marimba Band. It is almost like Covid is gone (though still giving booster shots) and a somewhat normality in this peaceful little coffee farming town. A few individuals still wear a mask, but generally none.
Yesterday, 15 September, was Costa Rica’s Independence Day Celebration nation-wide including here in Atenas. I worked into the night processing my many photos and selecting choice ones for my photo gallery titled in Spanish this time :
In Alajuela a couple of weeks ago while waiting on my bus I snapped this statue of dancers in a neighborhood city park where I temporarily catch my bus back to Atenas. Ticos love dancing and do in the parks a lot when bands perform, but it is rare to see any Tico this overweight! Maybe the couple is suppose to be tourists? 🙂
I went early at 8:30 for what I understood would be an “unveiling” of the new ATENAS park sign and what they were calling a “dedication ceremony.” Nada! After nearly 2 hours downtown I picked up my photos I had left earlier to be printed across from the park and Sr. Chacón there told me that they would not unveil the ATENAS letters until 7 pm tonight (probably in the rain) and I will not go back! I was there mainly to get a photo of the Atenas sign, so I was disappointed! I walked home with my new photos and will maybe go tomorrow to photograph the sign.
!Then the only programming on the stage for the first two hours was the main Evangelical church here in town performing charismatic music like in a charismatic worship service and a hand full of vendors (more like a flea market) – both also disappointing to me. The stage will have more and different kinds of music throughout the day, which is what the city does with all of these all-day fiestas they sponsor, but after I learned the sign would not be un-covered, I got my photos and walked home. 🙂 I will photograph it tomorrow and post just that photo. 🙂
For the last year or two I’ve worked hard a preparing good, healthy meals at home from making 8-servings of spaghetti with meat (eating 1 & freezing 7 for future meals) to multiple recipes of homemade vegetable soup to help me eat more veggies, last week a yummy Chick Peas Salad from a Washington Post Recipe and also last week a 7-layer dip (mostly veggies). And I do breakfast at home all but one morning a week with 3 or 4 fruits, nuts, whole grains in either bread, hot or cold cereal or French Toast, saving my omelets for some dinners! 🙂
But living solo, I still like to eat out and I’m now trying to find more restaurants that I like while some I liked closed during Covid. So I was a little surprised to see two new ones open in the last few weeks, one serving everything from pizza & burgers to steaks & seafood and the other one our first “genuine” Mexican Restaurant: