Baltimore Oriole

A female in one of my trees and the “snowbirds” are coming – both literally and figuratively! 🙂

TODAY is Thanksgiving Day in the States and though not a holiday here, I’m having a traditional Thanksgiving Day Dinner with friends from New Hampshire up the street from my house.

Baltimore Oriole Female, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica

Happy Thanksgiving Day!

¡Pura Vida!

And my Baltimore Oriole Gallery!

Christmas ’22 at CITY MALL

The closest shopping mall to me is City Mall in Alajuela across the highway from the San Jose Airport, the largest mall in Costa Rica and second largest in Central America (Panama has a bigger one). Like all malls everywhere, everything is more expensive than at little local stores, but it is still popular, especially with the younger generations! I go two or three times a year for things I can’t get anywhere else and to see the new Christmas decorations. I went last week for my annual photo wall calendar by CR Photographer Pucci in the big and wonderful bookstore “La Librería Internacional” and some Avery Labels at Office Depot. 🙂

Christmas 2022 at CITY MALL Alajuela, Costa Rica
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Christmas ART SHOW! – Plan now!

I will be one of the participating artists in this year’s “Just in Time for Christmas ART SHOW” in Atenas, Alajuela Province, Costa Rica.

Mark your calendar now! Just 1 month from today!

Costa Rica Nature Photographer Charlie doggett offering his photos this December.

Weekend of 9-11 December

Hotel Colinas del Sol, Atenas

  • Friday, 9 December, 3-8 pmJack, Piet & Syl Music at 5 pm!
  • Saturday, 10 December, 10 am to 8 pm Poison Dart Frogs Band at 5 pm!
  • Sunday, 11 December, 10 am to 4 pm
One of the photo greeting cards of a flower photographed in Atenas.
Read more: Christmas ART SHOW! – Plan now!

“Nature As Art” Photo Gifts

  • FREE Photo Book “Retired in Costa Rica” to first 39 customers who purchase anything, even a greeting card! 🙂
  • FREE Gift Boxes for the first 6 books purchased!
  • Wall Art: “Float Mounted MetalPrint” to brighten any home! At below my cost!
  • Selected Photo Books at below my cost with first 6 sold receiving a free gift box!
  • Real Photo Greeting Cards (blank inside) only $3 or CRC 2,000 each! With envelopes! And they are frameable too! Send some pura vida!
  • Limited Misc. Items: 2 Photo Calendars 2023, 3 tote bags, 1 Toucan T-shirt XL, 1 Toucan Mouse Pad – FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED! 🙂
A spinner rack of photo greeting cards from nature!
Cover of a recent photo book – A Coffee Table Book! GREAT GIFT!
Several different Atenas Oxcart Wheel Photos in the Greeting Cards.
Another book that will be available along with Book 2, the Feature Photo.

Read about the other Artists at JIT for Atenas!

See you December 9-11!

¡Nos vemos del 9 al 11 de diciembre!

¡Pura Vida!

Setting Up for 10-Day Fiesta

The carnival people arrived in town yesterday and started setting up for the central Catholic Church’s Patron Saint (San Rafael) Fiesta which, with donated food and entertainment on a stage in church parking lot, plus daily Bingo will all raise a little bit of money for the church. And the cheap carnival rides? Well I can’t see how anyone makes money off those, but evidently they do! 🙂 One set-up shot here followed by a 6-shot gallery of the carnival people setting up things in the street in front of church.

Setting up carnival rides in the street in front of the church.
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Central Park Atenas

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.

Continue reading “Central Park Atenas”

Caribbean Retreat Tomorrow

Most years in September I make a week relaxation adventure in the “Caribe South” which refers to the southern half of the Atlantic coast of Costa Rica around Puerto Viejo de Talamanca and the smaller town of Manzanillo where I explore two national parks/refuges (Cahuita & Gandoca-Manzanillo) for birds, butterflies, monkeys, sloths and other nature, visit some of the Bribri indigenous villages, botanical gardens, and maybe this year a new butterfly garden (if my tour people say it is okay). 🙂

And not to ignore the northern Caribbean side of Costa Rica or Limón Province; that’s where the provincial capital and port city of Limón is located and then above that a favorite national park, Tortuguero, which I hope to return to in 2023! It’s “The Amazon of Costa Rica” or a river and beach based jungle rainforest full of incredible wildlife and other nature! I can’t wait to get back there! 🙂 So much to see and do here!

But this trip is mostly relaxing in the beachside Hotel Banana Azul, walking a forested beachside road (for sloths, birds, butterflies) and walks or just relaxation on the beach (I don’t swim or surf in the ocean anymore) and this is the only place I’ve found that gives a “Relaxation Massage” that is actually relaxing. 🙂 So it is my only get-a-way that is not totally inside a dense rain or cloud forest (though Cahuita & Gandoca-Manzanillo are dense rainforests), yet still nature-centered and very relaxing. I missed it in 2020 due to Covid and no flights there, but here’s a couple of photos from last year’s post-cancer retreat in the “Howler Suite” or Room #1. 🙂

View from my “Howler Suite” Room through gardens to the beach.
One of the many varied sunrises at Banana Azul Beach.

And just one more of the many things I look forward to each year that I’m “Retired in Costa Rica,” from rainforest and cloud forest photo trips to cultural activities and enjoying my little flower garden in Atenas! I have achieved my idea of pure life in paradise! And this December I will celebrate 8 years of living here! 🙂

¡Pura Vida!

Costa Rican band will participate in the Rose Parade

And that linked title takes you to this week’s Tico Times article about a community-wide band and dance team from Zarcero which will represent Costa Rica a second time in the Rose Parade, Pasadena, California.

Zarcero is a town (called pueblo here) that is a little smaller than Atenas and north of us. It is known for topiaries in their Central Park, cheese-making and this large and professional community band of all ages. If you are one of those Americans who always watch the Rose Parade on TV, be sure to watch for the Costa Rica band! 🙂

More photo views of “My Costa Rica” in

My Photo Galleries.

🙂

Yesterday’s Parade

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 :

2022 Desfile del Día de la Independencia, Atenas

Here’s my favorite portrait of one of the two UTN Cowboys on horses followed by just 2 photos from each of the 8 sub-galleries in the above gallery (including one with the above guy’s horse) . . .

See his horse in one of the following photos!
Continue reading “Yesterday’s Parade”

Irritating Noise = Back to Normal!

With the fading of Covid and mask-wearing in Atenas comes the welcome sounds of the old “life as normal” with concerts and fiestas in the park and our first parade in more than 2 years scheduled for next week, 14 & 15 September, to celebrate Independence Day which is 15 September. Usually there is the parade of lanterns made by elementary school children on the night of 14th and then the big parade with all the bands + mid-day on the 15th. We will see, but you know something will happen because from the side of my hill I can hear three different schools practicing their drumming daily, which they always do a couple of weeks before a parade! 🙂 I’m still searching for a schedule of events and may have to go by the city hall for that. 🙂 Here’s some photos of previous years bands drumming before Covid . . . a single shot, then a gallery . . .

Youth Drumming in Atenas, Costa Rica
Continue reading “Irritating Noise = Back to Normal!”