NOTE: I still plan on my first report from Chachagua Rainforest tonight, but for morning readers, this lifestyle report 🙂 . . .
Now you could call my bus-riding “cultural” or “simple living” or “green living” etc. But Saturday I road the bus to Alajuela again after almost cutting it out for 2 years because of Covid and the dangers of infection in such close quarters. For example, one of my old bus drivers died of Covid he caught as a driver to and from San Jose from Atenas.
But during this past Saturday’s bus trip I felt all the tension and stress caused by the fraudulent use of my debit card just disappeared and I vowed then that I would do this regularly again now. Covid is waning here and I’m feeling safer with all travel now, though I still consider my hidden jungle lodges safer than the cities! 🙂
First you must know that I have not owned a car since 2014 when I moved to Costa Rica and even though I rented cars a few times during my first 2 years here just for trips outside of Atenas, I soon discovered the joy of walking and taking buses and taxis and for awhile was taking bus trips all over the country. I now use a private driver for more of my trips (especially with Covid), but the more regular bus trips to Alajuela (and fewer to San Jose) will now continue while still wearing a mask. And as a senior adult, the Alajuela trip is free and to San Jose half price, like the equivalent of 75 to 80¢! 🙂
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. 🙂
Though masks are still required in all public places, rebellious teens often shed them after school and are now socializing after school in Central Park. The other day I sat on one of the concrete benches around the modern circular Kiosk and watched some high schoolers getting together around this and other areas of the park. Here’s 3 shots of teens and 1 of a little kid . . . 🙂
I was going to avoid all tours but decided the two I did today would not be that popular and not so many people and that was true! My early morning pre-breakfast bird hike was just me and a masked young couple from Europe, he from France and she from Germany plus our local guide Jose. (more on it later) Then at 9 Jose also led the farm tour with just me and a nice lady from Germany and her daughter 11 or 12ish. They were of course masked and her Dad was not interested in the tour. 🙂
Below is a slide show from the farm tour today with pix not in chronological order . . .
Yesterday I completed the last of Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple series of mysteries and had earlier completed all of her Hercule Poirot mysteries. Plus, on my one trip to London I saw her only play, The Mousetrap, the longest running play anywhere in the world! It was great! Just like her books! 🙂
. . . lovers of stories, books and libraries – the 3 main characters in this multi-layered story of totally different people from the 1450’s all the way through 2020 and to the future in 2164, all impacted by this fictitious lost and found story by a very early Greek writer who called his story “Cloud Cuckoo Land” (in Classical Greek of course!). It touches on so many life issues and about our own future on earth that I won’t try to list them all. You move between the stories of totally different people (ages 12 to 86) affected by Cloud Cuckoo Land (the Greek novel) in Constantinople (1450’s), Bulgaria (1450’s), Idaho (1940’s to 2020), Korea (1950’s), and outer space (2164) so that like his “All the Light” book (just 2 overlapping stories) you can get confused at first (if not more so). Eventually the many complicated pieces of the puzzle start coming together and you too begin to get what all these others are getting from Cloud Cuckoo Land. It is more multi-layered than Anthony Doerr’s previous classic All the Light We Cannot See (Goodreads Reviews), but just as impactful (if not more so) and will certainly become another classic! I highly recommend both books! 🙂
Read some otherGoodreads Reviews of this NY Times best seller, Cloud Cuckoo Land. Now I will simplify my reading escapes with another Agatha Christie mystery! 🙂 Rest my simple mind which is still spinning from this read. 🙂
This book is my current read as the #1 on the New York Times best seller list by Pulitzer Prize winning author Anthony Doerr who wrote the best WWII novel I’ve read yet, All the Light We Cannot See that at first I found hard to read with two different parallel stories during WWII of a 12 year old girl in France and a 12 year old boy in Germany and of course their lives eventually cross. A powerful story! Worthy of all the awards! And now . . .
Walking was as natural as breathing. Everything we did included walking paths! As a child, walking became a natural part of daily life but somehow was never something the family photographed. 🙂 Thank goodness for that street photographer that gave us several shots like this one over those early years in Fort Smith!
Costa Rica’s answer to the American Halloween tradition is “Day of the Masquerade” or Dia de la Mascarada (Wikipedia article) and today I experienced a tiny fringe of it at my favorite Supermarket . . .
The fear of the Police probably stops most graffiti and street art in Nicaragua, especially in Manaus, but in the little tourist town of Colonial Granada on Lake Nicaragua I found these two works of street art on the sides of buildings. See my Gallery of other shots in Granada, a beautiful, photogenic, colonial town or at bottom of post, links to all of my two trips photos.
DISCLAIMER: “Street Art” for this series is paintings and tile work along streets, usually on buildings, that may or may not have been commissioned or done “illegally” without permission. I have no way of knowing. I purposefully did not include public statues, fountains, etc. obviously sanctioned by the government.
“Speak softly, but carry a big can of paint.”
If interested in Nicaragua, see all of my photos from two trips there in 2016, mostly for birding, but other local photography included: