Wow. Today is our 19th wedding anniversary. I remember that day like it was yesterday. That's so nice, actually, because I can no longer remember yesterday.
PHOTO: We got married in Key West on our dock at sunset. We lived in a mobile home with this view. Actually, it was a '69 travel trailer with permanent tip-outs and an enclosed porch. What a spot, eh? OH, and here's our song:
Funny, that song is about living some sorta crazy fantasy… speaking of which, last Thursday was the 4th anniversary of our touchdown in Costa Rica. I know I just said this, but, man, were we newbs or what? I remember that day, too. Landing with all that luggage at Juan Santa Maria International Airport. We were culture-shocked immediately: less than 60 days earlier we'd had no thought of moving anywhere. Then, BOOM, foreign country. Four-rin. Everything about being here, everywhere we looked, just flat out strange.
And Marco, the owner of the Amistad Institute where we were scheduled to start Spanish lessons the very next morning, picked us up at the airport! He'd never met us, yet he came to the airport to pick us up, on a Sunday afternoon. Our newbieness must have been awesomely obvious even over the phone. OK, he had a vested interest in seeing we got settled in safely with all our stuff intact. But that's not why he did it, and I'm sure he's done it for others. He did it because he is a kind person. Not only was it a glimpse into Marco's soul, but our very first taste of the tico heart. Marco and the Amistad Institute hold a hot spot in ours. I am grateful for his generosity of spirit, and for the universe nudging us in his direction.
Looking back, we weren't so much running to as running from. (Which is basically how I've gotten everywhere I've been.) Running from four hurricanes in a row. From no paycheck in 8 months and not a one on the way. From the IRS, who'd broken so many of its own rules in our then-fledgling civil tax case, that we were scared and sick of being so. And, while Costa Rica offers absolutely zero protection from an over-reaching and abusive home government, at least mine might have some bureaucratic hassles getting to me… maybe. Come to think of it, our biggest disappointment with Costa Rica is its utter lack of interest in maintaining its USP. It really wants to be a little USA. Or a little China, whoever is offering the most money.
Dear God, please let Otto Guevara win Costa Rica's presidential election 4 Feb!
And, as long as I'm dreaming, hey, Costa Rica, stop poisoning your waters, your land, and your people. Legalize and grow hemp, shut out Monsanto which will first kill your farming, then your farmers ala India. Don't sell out for the short term money. Be bold, be prosperous.
And, least important at the time, running from Bush II's perpetual war to a beautiful, peaceful country with no army. Truth be told, if Ron Paul had won the 2008 election, we'd probably be living back in the states right now. And while we I had hope for Obama, we
are happy to stay away from his equally war-mongering deficit-building
oil-hungry big-gov-is-good-gov administration. Feh!
Am I happy to be living in Costa Rica? Yes. But probably not for the right reason. Mostly I'm happy to be here because it's not there. The right reason would be to live in Costa Rica because it's Costa Rica and not because it's not the U.S.
That said, let me say this, too: I love my Costa Rica life. I love speaking Spanish, life's simplicity, the colors, the mountains, the weather, my house, my view, my friends, my chickens. The fact I can decide to have chickens, then just run out and get me some without asking some bureaucrat's permission. Some bureaucrat who, in the states, would not appreciate chickens.
I've finally started nesting in my house. Took me long enough. I painted walls and hung pictures. We are here. And why not? It's not there, and despite my very few disappointments in here, despite how much here may want to be there, it never will be. Sweetness.
Here's a new development (do those ever stop?): we are starting to look into intentional communities. A few friends are interested, so we are investigating. Maybe join one that is already en tramite (in process), maybe form our own. There will be blogs about that, you betcha: gardening, chickening, kefiring… looking at the next 50 years.
Meanwhile, to celebrate our anniversary, Hal and I decided to stay married. Whee!
And we bought one of those big plastic pools to sub in as our first tilapia pond. I wonder if fish can eat through vinyl. Did you know that tilapia are mouth breeders? There's something I never knew. I never even knew there was such a thing as a mouth breeder. You just don't run into many of those.
And did you know that, to prepare the pond water before you add the tilapia, you use chicken poop to start up the algae machine? Now, that is what I call handy!
Congratulations on your nineteenth wedding anniversary!
BTW How do you know the word Feh???? Great word! Mazel Tov!
I learned it from Irwin Mollot (we think there was a -witz on the end of that name when his mother got off the boat), Penny’s father (Penny is one of my best friends in Key West, mother to Belle). Irwin was the surrogate grandfather for both boys at their adoption finalization. He also taught me gupl (fork in Yiddish.) See? I am multi-lingual.
And, a mazel tov from the KWters who took your place. We’re thoroughly enjoying ourselves. Thanks for everything. Regards to Hal (he looks so young) and the boys.
Sam & Janet
Oh, alright, Elyse & Howard
Thank you for holding down the fort! Hope to see you sometime…
Congratulations to you and Hal.
Anniversaries are great. Celebrate, celebrate, celebrate.
Love and kisses,
Congratulations on your anniversary my wife and i are on our second year in Costa Rica, and our second year of marriage. We have a happy and healthy 1 year old son. As recently wed couple i would recommend Costa for any newly wed couples. This as you you know is stress free place to live and great place for family to grow.
Thanks for the tip about the telapia pond using a swimming pool i did not think of that I am going to try that.
Honey, I think that’s ‘mouth brooder’, i.e. momma keeps the brood in her mouth. The breeding actually happens in a nest into which mom and dad go separately. Sort of like Ricky Nelson’s parents.
Hey, Jason, congrats to you, too!
Mouth brooder? Oh. I never knew those existed either. <3
I’m a-ga-ga at the excellent writing by Saratica and her commenters! Ricky Nelson’s parents, indeed!
My honey and I are heading for CR on Tuesday, the 9th… so soon! for a 3 month trial of the pura vida lifestyle. We’ll be in Jardines de Roma in Heredia, near the University, for the first month. I’d love to be in touch with you if your time (and distance) allows. Keep up the great work. I’m enjoying it very much!
Hey, Kat, give me a call when you get settled. We’ll meet for coffee as long as you come to my side of the valley! We can go to Robin’s Cocina for coffee and cake… 2228-9474. See you soon!
WHO DAT!!!!!!!!!!I just found your spot today. Too bad you didn’t know what would happen when the BLACK AND GOLD hit the superbowl. Ever been to NOLA? It’s like I told Chicago fans when the Colts beat them in the superbowl a few years ago. At least somebody from New Orleans beat the Bears. Somebody from NOLA would have won this last superbowl also.WHO DAT,RRS