Tale of Two Waterfall States

Virgin Falls with Photography Club May 8,. 2004
Virgin Falls, Tennessee

One of my nature loves in both Tennessee and Costa Rica is waterfalls (somewhere just after birds and butterflies!)    🙂    And as I have been updating my photo galleries with a new “Pre-Costa Rica TENNESSEE Photos” gallery I have loaded my photos of all 54 Tennessee state parks plus state natural areas and a few separate independent waterfalls with multiple shots of each waterfall. To bring them all together I created a Tennessee WATERFALLS gallery with just one shot of each of 36 waterfalls I photographed in that state with more shots of each falls in the place galleries.

 

 

20190920_101632-A
Nauyaca Falls, Costa Rica

And you may already be aware of my Costa Rica WATERFALLS gallery with shots of 38 waterfalls I’ve photographed here over the first five+ years. In some ways tropical waterfalls are different but in even more ways they are similar, being in the mountains with usually uphill trails to the falls and then downhill trails to the plunge pools. I guess the type of plants and animals around the falls are the biggest differences. I love waterfalls everywhere and when back to traveling again, Walter is going to take me north of Atenas to some places where I can photograph about 5 more waterfalls. So the gallery will continue to grow! Enjoy! ¡Disfruta!

And oh yes, the featured image is Greeter Falls in the South Cumberland State Park, Tennessee.

“Adopt the pace of nature.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson.

¡Pura Vida!

0

Fun Facts About Costa Rica

The more I learn about Costa Rica the more I like it!   🙂

I copied the following from the  “Live in Costa Rica Blog”  by Christopher Howard.

A list of facts on Costa Rica compiled from a number of sources:

  • Costa Rica hosts more than 5% of the world’s biodiversity even though its landmass only takes up .03% of the planets surface.
  • Costa Rica is officially the Republic of Costa Rica (Spanish: República de Costa Rica).
  • Costa Rica spends roughly 6.9% of its budget (2016) on education, compared to a global average of 4.4%.
  • Costa Rica was sparsely inhabited by indigenous people before coming under Spanish rule in the 16th century. It remained a peripheral colony of the empire until independence as part of the short-lived First Mexican Empire, formally declaring independence in 1847.
  • Costa Rica has remained among the most stable, prosperous, and progressive nations in Latin America.
  • Following the brief Costa Rican Civil War in 1948, it permanently abolished its army becoming one of only a few sovereign nations without a standing army.
  • Costa Rica also has progressive environmental policies. It is the only country to meet all five UNDP criteria established to measure environmental sustainability.
  • Costa Rica plans to become a carbon-neutral country by 2021. By 2016, 98.1% of its electricity was generated from green sources particularly hydroelectric, solar, geothermal and biomass.
  • The name la costa rica, meaning “rich coast” in the Spanish language, was in some accounts first applied by Christopher Columbus, who sailed to the eastern shores of Costa Rica during his final voyage in 1502.
  • During most of the colonial period, Costa Rica was the southernmost province of the Captaincy General of Guatemala, nominally part of the Viceroyalty of New Spain.
  • Like the rest of Central America, Costa Rica never fought for independence from Spain.
  • Coffee was first planted in Costa Rica in 1808. By the 1820s, it surpassed tobacco, sugar, and cacao as a primary export. Coffee production remained Costa Rica’s principal source of wealth well into the 20th century.
  • Costa Rica is located on the Central American isthmus, lying between latitudes 8° and 12°N, and longitudes 82° and 86°W. It borders the Caribbean Sea (to the east) and the Pacific Ocean (to the west), with a total of 1,290 kilometers (800 mi) of coastline.
  • Costa Rica also borders Nicaragua to the north (309 km of border) and Panama to the south-southeast (330 km of border).
  • Costa Rica comprises 51,100 square kilometres (19,700 sq mi) plus 589 square kilometres (227 sq mi) of territorial waters.
  • Costa Rica’s marine area reaches 580,000 square kilometers, approximately 10 times larger than its land area.
  • The highest point in the country is Cerro Chirripó, at 3,819 meters (12,530 ft); it is the fifth highest peak in Central America.
  • The highest volcano in the country is the Irazú Volcano (3,431 m or 11,257 ft) and the largest lake is Lake Arenal.
  • There are 14 known volcanoes in Costa Rica, and six of them have been active in the last 75 years.
  • The country has also experienced at least ten earthquakes of magnitude 5.7 or higher (3 of magnitude 7.0 or higher) in the last century.
  • Costa Rica also comprises several islands. The Isla del Coco or Cocos Island (24 square kilometers) stands out because of its distance from the continental landmass, 480 kilometers from Puntarenas, but Isla Calero is the largest island of the country (151.6 square kilometers).
  • Over 25% of Costa Rica’s national territory is protected by SINAC (the National System of Conservation Areas), which oversees all of the country’s protected areas, the largest percentage of protected areas in the world (developing world average 13%, developed world average 8%).
  • Costa Rica possesses the greatest density of species in the world.
  • Costa Rica’s climate is tropical year round. However, the country has many microclimates depending on elevation, rainfall, topography, and by the geography of each particular region.
  • Costa Rica’s seasons are defined by how much rain falls during a particular period. The year can be split into two periods, the dry season known to the residents as summer (verano), and the rainy season, known locally as winter (invierno).
  • The Caribbean slopes of the Cordillera Central mountains, has an annual rainfall of over 5,000 mm (196.9 inches or 16.4 feet)
  • Costa Rica stands as the most visited nation in the Central American region,[104] with 2.9 million foreign visitors in 2016, up 10% from 2015.
  • By 2004, tourism was generating more revenue and foreign exchange than bananas and coffee combined.
  • The 2011 census counted a population of 4.3 million people[122] distributed among the following groups: 83.6% whites or mestizos, 6.7% mulattoes, 2.4% Native American, 1.1% black or Afro-Caribbean; the census showed 1.1% as Other, 2.9% (141,304 people) as None, and 2.2% (107,196 people) as unspecified.[1] By 2016, the UN estimation for the population was around 4.9 million.
  • In 2011, there were over 104,000 Native American or indigenous inhabitants, representing 2.4% of the population. Most of them live in secluded reservations, distributed among eight ethnic groups: Quitirrisí (in the Central Valley), Matambú or Chorotega (Guanacaste), Maleku (northern Alajuela), Bribri (southern Atlantic), Cabécar (Cordillera de Talamanca), Boruca (southern Costa Rica) and Térraba (southern Costa Rica).
  • The 2011 census classified 83.6% of the population as white or Mestizo; the latter are persons of combined European and Amerindian descent. The Mulatto segment (mix of white and black) represented 6.7% and indigenous people made up 2.4% of the population.
  • Costa Rica hosts many refugees, mainly from Colombia and Nicaragua. As a result of that and illegal immigration, an estimated 10–15% (400,000–600,000) of the Costa Rican population is made up of Nicaraguans.
  • Costa Rica’s largest cities (by population) are: San Jose (333,980), Puerto Limon (55.667), Alajuela (42.889), Heredia (40,840), Tibas (36.627), Desamparados (36,437), Liberia (34.469) and Puntarenas (32,460).
  • Christianity is Costa Rica’s predominant religion, with Roman Catholicism being the official state religion according to the 1949 Constitution.
  • Costa Rica’s Constitution guarantees freedom of religion.
  • According to the most recent nationwide survey of religion, conducted in 2007 by the University of Costa Rica, 70.5% of Costa Ricans are Roman Catholics (44.9% practicing Catholics), 13.8% are Evangelical Protestants (almost all are practicing), 11.3% report that they do not have a religion, and 4.3% belong to another religion.
  • The primary language spoken in Costa Rica is Spanish, which features characteristics distinct to the country, a form of Central American Spanish.
  • Costa Rica is a linguistically diverse country and home to at least five living local indigenous languages spoken by the descendants of pre-Columbian peoples: Maléku, Cabécar, Bribri, Guaymí, and Buglere.
  • In November 2017, National Geographic magazine named Costa Rica as the happiest country in the world.
  • Futbol (soccer) is the most popular sport in Costa Rica. The national team has played in four FIFA World Cup tournaments and reached the quarter-finals for the first time in 2014. The national team has qualified for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
  • According to the UNDP, in 2010 the life expectancy at birth for Costa Ricans was 79.3 years.
  • The Nicoya Peninsula is considered one of the Blue Zones in the world, where people commonly live active lives past the age of 100 years.
  • Costa Rica has been cited in various journals as Central America’s great health success story. Its healthcare system is ranked higher than that of the United States.
  • Costa Rica is among the Latin America countries that have become popular destinations for medical tourism.
  • Since 2012, Costa Rica has some of the most restrictive regulations on smoking in the world.
  • The staples of the Costa Rican diet are rice and black beans, along with bread, chicken or meat, vegetables, salads, and fruits. Rice and beans mixed together for breakfast is called ‘gallo pinto‘.
  • The average wage laborer is about $529 a month, the highest in Central America.
  • Costa Ricans refer to themselves as “Ticos” (males) and “Ticas” (females).
  • Though Costa Rica has its own currency (the Colon), the US dollar is commonly used in retail stores, rents, and prices of vehicles, for example.
  • There are about 52 species of hummingbirds in Costa Rica, making Costa Rica a true hummingbird capital.
  • Monkeys are one of the most common mammals in Costa Rica – next to bats.
  • Bug-phobics look out! There are about 750,000 species of insects that live in Costa Rica, including about 20,000 different types of spiders! Also, more than 10% of the world’s butterflies live here.
  • The Costa Rican government is democratic, with presidential elections every 4 years.
  • The average Costa Rican household size is 3.5 people per household.
  • Costa Ricans claim that Dr. Clodomiro “Clorito” Picado discovered the properties of penicillin before Dr. Alexander Fleming, based on a paper Dr. Picado had published in 1927.
  • Costa Rica has a 96% literacy rate.
  • Costa Rican women do not take their husbands’ last name when they get married. They keep their maiden name for life along with their mother’s maiden name.
  • Called the grano de oro (grain of gold), coffee was Costa Rica’s foremost export for 150 years until tourism surpassed it in 1991. More than 247,104 acres of coffee is planted in Costa Rica, making it the 13th largest coffee exporter in the world.
  • In Costa Rica, a soda is a small, informal restaurant that serves chicken, beans, rice, and salad for  ¢2,000 to ¢3,000 colones a plate.
  • Instead of saying “my other half,” Costa Ricans refer to their significant others as their “media naranja,” or “the other half of the orange”.
  • Costa Rica is the second largest exporter of bananas in the world after Ecuador.
  • In Costa Rica, a discoteca is a nightclub, and a nightclub is actually a strip club.
  • In Costa Rica, speed bumps are called topes or muertos (dead persons).
  • Costa Rica’s Escazú is famous for witchcraft where, historically, people took to mountain caves to secretly practice their religious and magical rituals.
  • Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel Treasure Island is thought to be modeled on Costa Rica’s Isla del Coco.
  • Costa Rica’s Oscar Arias Sanchez, president from 1986–1990 and again from 2006–2010, is a 1987 Nobel Peace Prize winner for his work in trying to end the crisis in Central America.
  • Costa Rica’s largest body of freshwater is the manmade Lake Arenal.
  • Arenal Volcano is the most active volcano in Costa Rica and one of the most active in the world. In 1968, Arenal erupted and destroyed the town of Tabacón. It last erupted in 2010.
  • Drake Bay in southern Costa Rica is named for Sir Francis Drake, the first English navigator to sail around the world, who landed there in 1579.
  • The sun rises and sets in Costa Rica at the same time every day (5 am and 6 pm) all year round, due to its close proximity to the equator.
  • The single largest factor affecting Costa Rica’s economy is its national debt. In 1981, the country was the first in the world to default on its loans.
  • Costa Rica’s Diquís Delta stone spheres are one of Central America’s most intriguing archaeological phenomena. Believed to be around 2,000 years old, thousands of stone spheres, from 4 inches (10 cm) to 8 feet (2.5 m) in diameter, were uncovered in the 1940s.
  • The Costa Rican National Post Office was built in 1914.
  • Costa Rica’s Teatro Nacional (National Theater) was built in 1897.
  • Costa Rica’s national musical instrument is the marimba.
  • Franklin R. Chang-Diaz is Costa Rica’s only astronaut, as well as the first Latin-American to be chosen by NASA and to go into space.
  • Geovanny Escalante, a Costa Rican saxophonist for the band Marfil, broke Kenny G’s world record for holding a single saxophone note in 1998. He held the note for 90 minutes and 45 seconds, nearly doubling Kenny G’s time.

Courtesy to my good friend Rico at QCostaRica

¡Pura Vida!

0

Breathtaking Moments!

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take,

but by the moments that take our breath away.

~ Unknown

And with the extra “down time” I’ve had, thanks to Coronavirus, and the inability to travel around Costa Rica, I’ve been able to organize more of my past photos which represent “the moments that have taken my breath away!” And I hope to start collecting more new “moments” by restarting my Costa Rica travels in July – I will have to wait and see if lodges are open and that can happen!   🙂   So for now it’s Tennessee & other travels!   🙂

When not busy with all the daily necessities of life, Spanish lessons, other reading, or writing one of these blog posts, I am usually working on organizing thousands of past photos, mostly made between 1999 & 2014. They will soon all be in one place, in my public photo gallery hosted by Smugmug.com and seamlessly looking like a part of my WordPress website/blog page, charliedoggett.net, where you are reading this right now. Just click “gallery” at top of the page to see the photo galleries. Or for the new ones . . .

International & Non-TN Travel Moments

All of my travel photos outside Tennessee have been organized into travel galleries collectively called Pre-Costa-Rica TRAVEL Gallery (trips before Dec. 2014) found below all my Costa Rica galleries in the Big Gallery with many breath-taking moments from the Amazon to Africa + Yellowstone to Grand Canyon! In addition I have started TRAVEL pages on my website where I will continue to add stories and other information beyond these photos, including travel-related pages from my journals over the years. As always, this site is a creative work in progress!

Some Tennessee Moments Now Ready

I’ve completed what may be the two biggest “Pre-Costa Rica TENNESSEE Photos” galleries with my Tennessee State Parks gallery (the feature photo) and Tennessee State Natural Areas gallery, but much more to do for Tennessee yet, not to mention thousands of Nashville photos for that separate gallery!  But . . .

Costa Rica Moments are Up-to-Date!

I call my big gallery “Charlie Doggett’s COSTA RICA” and it is pretty much up to date in every sub-galleries about Costa Rica, especially the Costa Rica TRIPS gallery which is mainly what this post is about.!   🙂   Or my biggest collections are my BIRDS galleries.

My life has been blessed with many “breath-taking moments” and I’ve recorded a whole lot of them in photos. Check ’em out!   🙂

“When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.”
― Rumi

¡Pura Vida!

0

Hope is the thing with feathers

Hope is the thing with feathers 

Hope is the thing with feathers

That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I’ve heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.


~Emily Dickinson – 1830-1886

¡Pura Vida!

Featured photo is a Red-legged Honeycreeper I photographed at Maquenque Lodge in Boca Tapada, Costa Rica where I hope to be again in July if re-opened.   🙂    See more in my Red-legged Honeycreeper Gallery or also my bigger BIRDS Photo Gallery for many more birds. Pura vida!

0

Costa Rica’s Prepared for Virus

Like Costa Rica’s emblematic Sloth, the people here are always smiling and prepared for come what may – even Coronavirus! Feature photo is by the Sloth Rescue Ranch, not me, and from Tico Times. Read on to see how better prepared little Costa Rica is than the big ol’ USA and thus we will get over it quicker too!   🙂

Thursday’s Tico Times edition reminded us of how better prepared we are than a lot of bigger countries for the pandemic, like our great university is already making emergency respirators for when/if needed at only $140 each! (You think the U.S. would ever do that?) People are ready to sacrifice financially for the 25 days we are closed to all outside tourists (and it will be much longer before tourism is back to normal–like by next winter we hope). Here are the specific articles this week in Tico Times about the pandemic’s affects on Costa Rica:

Costa Rica now has 201 cases of COVID-19   (as of Thursday past)

UCR Develops Emergency Respirators for $140 each!

Zero Tourists allowed here for 25+ days!

Beaches & Parks Remain Closed

airport-liberia-WEB
Empty Airport at Liberia, our smaller international airport in Guanacaste. No photo of SJO.

 

Read why Christopher Howard is glad he lives in Costa Rica during this world-wide pandemic:  The Best Place to be in the world before, during and after COVID-19    I agree with him!    🙂

 

“A problem is a chance for you to do your best.”

– Duke Ellington

 ¡Pura Vida!

And for photos of why I like Costa Rica so much, see my gallery:

Charlie Doggett’s COSTA RICA

0

Good COVID19 Quarantine Activities

Limited People Contact Now

Though we have fewer cases of the Coronavirus here in Costa Rica, our government has done a better job than many countries of educating people and keeping the number of cases low and thus as an “older person” I am staying in my house now (as recommended) except for these limited people contacts:

  1.  Supermarket – And I finally wised up to going when they are not crowded, like early morning.
  2.  Pharmacy
  3. Bank to pay 2 monthly bills and get cash at ATM  (avoid Monday, Friday, & 1st)
  4. Maid comes once a week and we keep our distance
  5. Neighbor delivered Carrot Cake to several of us live-alone singles 🙂

And what keeps me from having “cabin fever” or boredom staying at home all the time? Well, that is easy to answer! I keep doing what I’ve always done since I retired in Costa Rica (minus the travel now):

What I Do Without Other People

(1) Birding that I can still do early mornings right here in my own neighborhood or even walk to other parts of Atenas away from the crowds solo as I prefer anyway.

(2) Blogging started becoming a regular thing for me back in 2014 before I even moved here as I focused then on the decision-making of such a move and now it is my replacement of many failed attempts at journaling, plus I actually have regular followers now and enjoy helping others who are considering retiring in Costa Rica, plus it is still a report to family and friends back in the states who want to keep up. Its a fun and creative outlet!   🙂

(3) Life History Recording (very slowly in the background) as it becomes much of the undated portion of my blog/website, the way WordPress blogs/websites have been organized from the beginning  (dated blog & undated “static” pages). And  in some ways a part of this history is my . . .

(4) Photo Gallery which was originally going to be pages of this WordPress website, but because of the future potential problem of using too much memory and slowing down access, and me not liking their gallery templates that well, I chose to use a photo gallery specialist at a separate address with a link from my site menu where I can put the full-size photo files (WP wants me to “web-size” photos). Though it is only a click away from my website/blog Home Page, it is actually located on a different server where I have a plan with unlimited space, thus putting all of my important photos, both historical and current on it. And I’m still working on the historical part!   🙂   Hey! I have thousands of photos made just since 2000 and still picking through them for the best to put in the gallery. And oh yes, I chose SmugMug.com as the best looking and easiest to use of the many options today! (Having tried Flickr & Pbase.)  And from my gallery you can even order prints or wall art of any of my photos!   🙂    

(5)  Spanish Lessons Online now! No people contact there!  🙂

(6) The heaviest people contact I’ve had in the past was in almost monthly trips to lodges all over Costa Rica. I postponed two trips, one next week to San Gerardo de Dota and my May trip to San Isidro del General, which had included going on public bus (not healthy now). After that I’ve planned a July birthday trip to Manquenque Lodge in a tree house room as I turn 80 and things will have to get pretty bad for me to miss that!   🙂   I’m using my personal driver to get there and its in “the middle of nowhere” jungles where there should not be any virus. But I wait and see!    🙂

I find plenty to do while quarantined at home in my Atenas Roca Verde rent house.

 

“At this point, it is believed many of the world has come in contact with the virus. And for that reason, we all have to experience social distancing and self-quarantine at various levels.”

¡Pura Vida!

FLASH NEWS!

RAIN  —  RAIN  —  a real rain with a lot of water yesterday afternoon, not the little sprinkle we had on the 24th. This is good news! The gardens and trees will love it and maybe the rainy season is starting early this year – we will see. But at least I don’t have to water for a few days now!   🙂

I still find it hard to show rain in a photo, so I won’t share my effort. But this is a big deal because there has been no rain since early December and we sometimes have to wait until May! I am not living in a rainforest, even though nearby. The Central Valley is in between the cool/wet cloud forests and the hot/wet/humid rainforests, thus our claim of “the best weather in the world” needing no a/c or heat ever here! But we do have rainy and dry seasons and it is still considered “tropical.”    🙂

 

0

Chirping

“El gorjeo” or “tweeting” or “chirping” is what many of the birds are doing every morning now and earlier than usual, before sunrise! But none of the birds are singing as much as the Clay-colored Thrush or Yigüirro it is called here (feature photo), the National Bird of Costa Rica. Yigüirros have started their pre-rain singing earlier this year, which is usually in April. This chirping is why it is the National Bird with tradition saying they are calling in the May rains or the “green season” as it is called by many here. Hopefully this earlier singing means the rains will come earlier! Listen to a recording of song   🙂   And soon the wind stops blowing which is almost constantly now. I AM READY FOR GREEN SEASON!    🙂

In one sense it is a little like “Spring” in the north, but maybe a backwards spring as we move from hot-dry-windy to daily rains, cooler temps, greenness & more flowers. It is a tropical paradise that most tourists miss because they want to avoid rain.   🙂    But most of us who live here prefer it to the “dry season.”

“Don’t let the rainy season deter your visions of outdoor adventures! This is Costa Rica’s most beautiful time of the year, when every landscape explodes in vibrant colors, with blooming flowers and blossoming fruit trees, not to mention cooler temperatures.”     ~costarica.com

 

¡Pura Vida!

 

0

Postponing the Magical

Yes, San Gerardo de Dota, Costa Rica is magical, if for no other reason, it is the best place to see and photograph the Resplendent Quetzal, the feature photo I made on my first trip to Costa Rica way back in 2009.

For next week I had plans for my “social distancing” of people in Atenas by being one of the few (or maybe only) tourist at the best hotel in San Gerardo de Dota, Hotel Savegre. I can find enough birds there to keep me and my camera happy by just walking around their grounds, plus their guide takes me away from the hotel some mornings as I photograph birds that can be found only in the cloud forest mountains adjacent to Quetzal National Park (park closed now for coronavirus safety). Yes, I was planning to buck the system and all the recommendations to stay home by going there next week!   🙂   But fate or “God’s intervention of the stupid” has caused me to . . . 

Postpone Savegre Lodge to a Later Month

Monday morning’s visit back to the dentist informed me that my infected tooth needs another week of antibiotic treatment before he can do a root canal and that I should not leave home for the next two weeks, having his cell phone number to call if more pain or other problems. I’m grounded by a dentist!   🙂

I just emailed the hotel-lodge requesting that my reservation be moved up to August or October, two future months without trips planned (and hopefully Coronavirus is settled before then). I should know soon what my options are with the hotel, but I expect no problem getting another reservation. And life moves on!

P.S.

The lodge gave me 13 months to reschedule and then I went ahead and cancelled my May trip which included a hotel night in San Jose and a long bus trip. So no more trips until July.

Desire increases when fulfillment is postponed.

~Pierre Corneille

🙂

¡Pura Vida!

0

Alajuela Coronavirus Adventure

Friday I went to Alajuela early for my appointment at the government hospital to get an appointment scheduled with my Cardiologist in Nov-Dec for my annual checkup (yeah, its weird to have an appointment to get an appointment), plus I had a package to pick up at Aeropost and a couple of items to get at PriceSmart.

Wow! I had not been to Alajuela since the Coronavirus scare hit and it has nearly as many cases as San Jose as the second largest city (and my provincial capital by the way).  EVERYTHING WAS DIFFERENT!

1st, to get to the hospital early enough for shorter lines, I took the 6:30 AM bus, which is usually packed with people going to work, shopping, appointments, visits, etc. There were just 5 of us passengers on the bus – scattered out one to a seat. And at the entrance to bus was a bottle of hand sanitizer.

Empty streets!

2nd, as the bus arrived in Alajuela I could immediately see a difference with fewer cars and people – some streets like a ghost town!

3rd, no wait for a taxi with few people there to use them.

4th, when I got to the hospital, there were few people out front as I was expecting by now, but I wasn’t expecting to be turned away! When I got to the door a guard was stopping everyone and I showed him my cita (appointment paper) and he rattled off several things rapidly that I did not fully understand but I think he was basically telling me “no” that “all appointments not emergencies are canceled.” Bottom line, he would not let me in!   🙂

I got there early on purpose to avoid a long wait, yet I still expected to spend an hour or more. But I spent only 5 minutes there and it was now about 7:20 AM, with Aeropost not opening until 9 and PriceSmart at 9:30. Ugh! Oh well, I drank no coffee at home that morning and had only a bowl of cold cereal, so I took my time walking about 8 blocks to the nearest McDonald’s for breakfast.

5th, I entered the biggest MacDonald’s in Central Alajuela with only one other customer inside! Like the bus, they had hand sanitizer at the counters.  I took my time with ham & eggs and lots of coffee while reading the Washington Post. At about 8:30 I began the 6 block walk to Aeropost, getting there 10 minutes before they opened officially.

6th, at Aeropost I only waited a few minutes before one of the clerks, who recognized me through the glass (I’m a regular), came out with my little package, so I did not even have to be one of their limit of 3 customers inside the store – see sign below. And the bright red & green sign reflected backwards in their window is a MegaSuperMercado, a downtown chain-supermarket across the street! The English translation of their home-made sign:  “Maximum 3 customers within the branch.” In what they call a “branch office.”   That is also the feature photo and the recommended “Social Distancing” to help stop the spread of the virus. Costa Rica is doing its part one little business at a time!   🙂

“Social distancing!” inside banks and businesses.

7th, Because of the time I saved from the hospital rejection, I had about 30 minutes before PriceSmart even opened, so I just walked the 12 or so blocks to PriceSmart which opens at 9:30. This is one way I get my exercise!   🙂   And in so doing, I walked by Alajuela Central Park which, like the one in Atenas, is closed with yellow tape wrapped all around the whole block:

“No large public gatherings” thus all parks are closed in Costa Rica!

8th, at the entrance to PriceSmart (our store like Costco or Sam’s Club) they not only had a bottle of hand sanitizer, but specifically asked me to please use it while the lady wiped off the handle of my push cart. But unlike everywhere else I had been that morning, they were full of people and at opening time! Full with long check-out lines! And still some crazy bulk-buying by the panicked!

I actually don’t like this store which is too expensive, too large a quantity of things, and not consistent in their stocking; BUT they usually have about 5 or so items I cannot get anywhere else – things I really like. (Another option might be at AutoMercado, an American-styled supermarket specializing in American brands, but their location is not as handy for me as PriceSmart, as a bus rider.)

When I got out of PriceSmart it was a little after 10, meaning I had just missed the 10 o’clock bus! In the mornings the return buses only run on the hour (tho every 30 minutes in the afternoon), so I just slowly walked the 6 blocks to the bus stop for Atenas and still had time to read a little of my new mystery book before it left at 11. Oh well, another morning is gone! But hey! I’m Retired in Costa Rica and this kind of virus-influenced inconvenience is simply part of my daily adventure! Its what you do when you are retired in Costa Rica!    🙂

“An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is only an adventure wrongly considered.”
― G.K. Chesterton

🙂

¡Pura Vida!

 

0

Indigenous woman?

Maybe – or maybe not – just art that my second dentist (Ureña) likes or maybe a relative made. He has these in his lobby and 3 appear to be the same indigenous woman from behind but in different clothing and accessories. Whatever the story behind them, my first impression was good and I snapped photos with my phone. The other appears to be an early migrant from the Caribbean Islands to the Caribbean (Atlantic) Coast of Costa Rica, where most of the Afro-Costa Ricans live and have roots in Jamaica or other Caribbean Islands, originally brought here by Spaniards to work their banana and other farms. We have the largest Jamaican population outside of Jamaica.   🙂    Anyway, I think it is good art and I enjoy art!

 

The job of the artist is always to deepen the mystery.” 

~Francis Bacon

¡Pura Vida!

 

And a local sense of humor at Tico Times Digital Newspaper:

Since all the people are staying at home, the native animals are reclaiming our Costa Rica parks, even Jurassic Park!   🙂    Or is that the lake in downtown San Jose’s Sabana Park?

Native animals return to Costa Rica as coronavirus forces humans indoors
The Tico Times – Mar 21, 2020

🙂

0