Tour de Atenas? And Bingo!

Some of the hundreds of bikes going by my house for more than an hour today.

I’m not sure what it is, but they don’t act like they are racing but rather completing a tour. For 30 minutes it was almost bumper to bumper bikes then the stragglers continued for an hour or two more. Participants are mostly Tico or local people with a few expats included. You see these large groups of spandex-clad bikers occasionally around here, usually on weekends and even out on the highways and rural roads. While during the week bikers are working people with baskets making deliveries or just getting to work, etc. Neither the town’s narrow streets or the narrow highways are safe for casual or transportation lone bikers, plus we are all hills which makes it difficult as well as dangerous. It is rare to see children biking the streets and neither kids nor teens bike to school. They all walk to school! Like me! 🙂 As much as I like biking, I think I will still to walking and maybe live longer.

After church online in Nashville I went to the Catholic church for another Bingo experience with other Su Espacio Spanish students. This time more students came, two tables full! A lot of fun. I report with photos in my new Español blog Aprendo Español en Atenas, titled Bingo a los números de práctica and I’m getting better with my numbers in spanish!

My table of 7 was one of two tables of students from Su Espacio this time.
Me and David are missing from the photo of this table.

Tico food and drinks are available for sale and this time I ate a big piece of pineapple cornbread with a Pepsi. Nope, I’m not doing without my sugar fixes here! Dulce is the name for sweets here.  🙂

They just call the numbers (No B-16, N-23 like in states) and we have a bowl of corn kernals on the table to mark our numbers. Susan was the only one of our group (1st on left above) who had a winning card but there were two winners and one prize. There was a drawing and she lost the draw. But the prizes are nothing to write home about!

Church Bingo, Stuffed Grapefruit, and Indian Village!

David invited estudiantes del español to the church bingo Sunday afternoon.
Not many of us showed up to practice our números in a fun way. Our table.
We were given corn kernels with our cards to lay on the numbers.
A card cost 1 mil colones ($2) as fundraiser for the church.
None on our table won a prize, though Corinna had a winning card.
Plus food was for sale! We shared tortillas with cream cheese.
Ticos use cream cheese instead of butter for lots of things.
Bingo & Lunch for sale was right after 11 AM Mass.
That is not when this older photo was made.
That Mass is a packed house!
Stuffed Grapefruit!
copied from web
I forgot to report the other day my experience eating a stuffed grapefruit, a Costa Rican specialty! The whole grapefruit is cooked and somehow candied and mine was stuffed with cream cheese, a dearly beloved by-product of milk or the cream here, which is why it is hard to find local butter. They use most of the cream for cream cheese! I told you that Ticos have more of a sweet tooth than me!  🙂

Here is one online recipe that doesn’t use cream cheese but a condensed milk and sugar filling. That is all I could find online. I guess it is just too local!”The place where I bought it used the name “Ronja Rellenos” for them, which I can’t find on the web. Another new experience!

copied from Google images

SERENDIPITY TRIP TOMORROW! Caribbean Coast and 3 nights in BriBri Indian Village.

The birding club had this trip planned for awhile with limited space in the humble lodging. I was on the waiting list. Well, last night there was a last minute cancellation and I decided to take it without any of my usual long range planning! Am I getting impulsive?

I have a 4W Drive vehicle reserved for in the morning. I’ll drive to the coast and to a hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca called Cariblue, very nice and on the beach! Meeting some club members for dinner there.

copied from Casa de Las Mujeres site

Then friday morning we caravan drive through the jungle through Bribri to Bambu on dirt and gravel roads, fording streams. At Bambu we pay someone to watch our cars and we take our “pack light” bags on a small boat for an hour floating trip to the village on Yorkin River in the Bribri Yorkin Reservation where we will stay 3 nights with no electricity at night (limited in day).

The Bribri are our hosts and will serve all meals, take us birding in the mornings and evenings with free time in the village and surrounding area with a waterfall and a hot springs. It will of course be a cultural experience with some of the few indigenous peoples left in Costa Rica. It is intentionally not promoted as a tourist destination. There’s only a half page in the Lonely Planet Costa Rica travel guide book about Yorkin. It is where people live and work and not equipped to handle tourists. Birders are different of course!  🙂

copied from Google images

The only websites on the village are by the various tour companies who take small groups there. I’m linking to Casa de Las Mujeres Yorkin because they have this good map. We are not using any tour company. Our birding guide has worked directly with the village elders and they are providing our boat transportation, meals, housing and guides into the forest in search of birds. So we are totally supporting the indigenous community.

A dream trip for me! How often do you have indigenous people taking you into an ancient forest looking for birds?

copied from Google images
“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” 
― Augustine of Hippo