The year past was one of the toughest ones I can remember. It’s been a year of extreme highs, some pretty darks depths; my share of awesome joys, mixed with an unhealthy dose of stress. And that’s not when you consider the economy, I might add — things are even worse when you roll all that in.
The year closed out on a more sombre note for me, in many ways. Much quieter, and I got to spend a lot of time with my family (which I cherish now, and cannot regret in anyway), but the future is a little less certain. I’m less concerned about that fact than I thought I would be, however.
Hey Monkey! Almost a year and a quarter ago, I brought you and Mommy so we could all be together here in Costa Rica. In that time, we’ve had the opportunity to do some travelling, but until this past week, we hadn’t ever been to the Caribbean side of the country. It was kind of a major check mark we needed to cover.
We’ve been to the Pacific side a few times now, and we’ve done the “middle” parts in between, even just a little. (Sadly, we’ll probably not be able to do the more southern parts. Or see pretty much anything else, if my job ends up being the way it’s looking.) It would have been pretty silly not to see at least both coasts.
And with our impending departure in a couple of months, we were running out of time to do it.
You probably won’t remember any of this when you finally get around to reading this, so I’m going to slide you a few details of the weekend.
1 May in many parts of the world is known as “May Day”, or “Labour Day”. Thanks to the Cold War, many people also think of 1 May as the day that Soviets drive tanks and nuclear missiles through Red Square. The Soviets kind of missed the point, there, as the goal of May Day was not to celebrate one’s military strength, but the power of your own proletariat — the workers themselves.
Well, I’ve been in Costa for nearly two straight months now — this is the longest continuous time I’ve ever spent outside of Canada — and I think it’s high time to answer the two most often-asked questions that I get: What do I like about Costa Rica, and what do I hate?
I’ll answer the latter in a separate post, but like all reviews, there’s reason to start with the positive stuff. Of course, these are not in any order whatsoever — they’re just as they come to mind.
Mother’s Day in Costa Rica doth not come in May, like we’re used to in North America. Here, it’s 15 August. This is the day (so I’ve read) that the Virgin Mary ascended to Heaven, and given that this is a very Roman Catholic-centric society, Christian Holy Days are holidays. That means El DÃ a de la Madre takes on extra importance here. Down here, it really is a religion.
Which is good for me, believe it or not. You see, back in May, I royally screwed up and really blew Alex’s first Mother’s Day by doing … well, nothing. At least nothing of note. Not exactly a wise thing to do on a mother’s first Mother’s Day. I had some serious sucking making up to do.
It’s the Metro Free Trade Zone Business Park, a mere 5 minutes from the airport. The nearest (decent) beach is 5 hours away over very bad roads (and drivers that would scare the pants of 99% of North American drivers). Yes, we’re closer than Calgary.