I give up. It's clear that I am probably not going to post here anymore. We got all involved in our current blog over at http://edgingfurthersouth2.blogspot.com/ so that's where our current adventures will appear. Join us there!
March 30, 2010
May 18, 2009
This is ridiculous! I just can't seem to get into writing anything here any more. And I really want to. But I guess I don't really want to write about Costa Rica right now. I did, however, do a whole blog on my solo trip to Antigua, Guatemala for Semana Santa last month (my 2nd trip to that fascinating country). I hope you'll take a look at all the wonderful pictures I posted of the magnificent scenes during that week.
November 24, 2008
Wow! We're in South America! See our latest travels over here: http://edgingfurthersouth.blogspot.com/
July 20, 2008
But this incredible singer is my grandson, Jorden! Isn't he totally awesome!
This is for Larry, the only person who has questioned why I'm not blogging any more, and who is thinking about coming to Costa Rica for dental work!
May 06, 2008
One of My All Time Favorite Restaurants in Florida. When we lived there, we used to go all the time for their seafood salad, which is really just a bowl of mostly seafood, not much salad to it. But it is fabulous! The gumbo is great, too. This time, I decided I just had to have one of their incredible cheeseburgers -best burgers ever. My annual beef craving is all gone now. Those things are big!
To see the slide show with a lot more of Le Tub, click here.
October 07, 2007
A bunch of Couch Surfers (see August 29 entry below) currently in the Heredia area got together for lunch today. What fun to get to meet some of these people in person! There were people from at least six countries, God only knows how many languages. Travelers are definitely some of the most fascinating people you can meet. So glad my friends SarahJoy and Julio told us about this group.
September 21, 2007
What a treat! We got invited out to see the finca (farm) our friends just bought. The view from their wonderful property in the Orosi Valley is incredible. We went over to their house the night before and did a sleep over so that we could get an early start to the farm in the morning. After a walk around the property we had a picnic and admired their view and the river. I am not kidding you. There's actually a river that runs through it! I don't think I've ever known anyone who owned property with a river running through it before. Sometime during the next few months they will start making plans for building a house on their property. It will be fun to see what type of house they decide to build in this beautiful spot. Meanwhile we've been assured that we will have an open invitation to visit them at their house on their river. What a life!
September 09, 2007
What better thing on a rainy day than - an art show! I had always wanted to meet Jude Maceren, the talented artist who lives and paints right up the road in San Rafael. When we received an invitation to view his art at his home and studio, it was a must go. The rains even receded for a while so we actually got to go without getting soaked! Besides being obviously talented, Jude is also personable. Inspired by his garden and by Costa Rica's generous gifts of nature, Jude paints varied styles and media. Gene the artist and Jude the artist could have talked all afternoon, but I hauled Gene out so that Jude could give his attention to some of his other guests! Unfortunately my photography doesn't approach the quality of Jude's paintings, but hopefully my photos will give you some idea of how beautiful his pieces are. You don't have to wait for the next art show. Jude says you can call anytime to make arrangements to stop by and view his art. Call him at 261-6746. Or email him at email@example.com. His place is in central San Rafael and very easy to find. For more about Jude and his art, see his blog here.
September 07, 2007
It's not just that my dentist, Dr Pacheco, is adorable, always smiling, never causes me pain and charges me a fraction of what those ladrones (thieves) charge in the U.S. Oh, all those things make me very happy, especially after some really bad experiences with dentists in that country up north. But the real excitement for me is the dim sum! Gene and I have a whole tradition wrapped around our trips to the dentist. We usually go for our appointments together. Afterwards, if we are able to eat, we go down to the next block and across the street to Restaurante Don Wang for a dim sum feast. If it's a day like today when I don't even have an appointment, but decide to tag along anyhow, so much the better! They offer a grand selection (46 different items) of dim sum, in addition to other types of Chinese dishes. We usually order from 4 to 6 different items to share (3 - 4 pieces in each little basket) and are totally stuffed by the time we leave. Yesterday we ordered just 4 things and the total bill, if we hadn't ordered the overpriced capuccinos, would have been just over 5,000 colones total ($10 or so). I have mentioned before that I DO NOT eat Chinese food in Costa Rica, since it is consistently inedible. Dim sum is different. It is the exception. This is one of my very favorite restaurants in this country. Its only shortcoming is that it is ordered off the menu rather than chosen from carts wheeled around the room. The place to go for the traditional service from carts is the Chinese Cultural Association in San Jose. That is a whole other experience, best done for lunch on a Saturday or Sunday when everyone else is there. Need to try that again soon, too!
September 01, 2007
...never ceases to amaze me. After our walk in the park at Inbioparque, we walked back to Santo Domingo central to catch a bus home. As we passed a beautiful old colonial home, we stopped to greet the older gentleman in the front yard. As we admired his garden, he quickly unlocked the gate and invited us in. His garden indeed was pretty, but I was itching to see the inside of this house which from the garden was gorgeous! He picked 2 of the biggest flowers I've ever seen and presented them to me. Maybe next time we'll get invited inside...
Let's go do something! Before the rains come! During the rainy season, we have to learn to think like this. My inborn tendency to have coffee, surf the net, have something to eat, relax, think about what to do today, does not work during the rainy season. If you want to do something, it's a good idea to do it soon after waking - especially if you are not an early riser. So today it was let's go to Inbioparque. This place describes itself as "an amazing theme park that offers an interactive experience with nature." It further says that it "teaches people about Costa Rica's biological diversity and the importance of conserving it." Sounds either like a fun park for kids or an educational tool for school trips. In our book it turned out to be a pleasant place for a walk through "jungle" trails, around a pond and through a butterfly garden. Pretty birds in the trees along the way made us feel like "birders" without the early morning awakening. A relaxing cafe hidden away in the midst made for a nice rest stop for a snack with coffee when the rains started. Yes, of course they started. After a walk back to the entrance during a lull in the rains, we stopped for lunch at the large commercial feeling restaurant. Yes, there are educational displays with information about flora and fauna and all that stuff. There are also markers naming the plants growing along the way. There is a huge map display with a video about Costa Rica's national parks. Our timing was off. We arrived just as the video ended, but the map was interesting. For us it was mostly just a pleasant walk in the forest. We will go again, but won't bother with the overpriced, oversized casado (set meal) in the restaurant. Instead we will just lunch on a variety of the nice little pastries with coffee in the cafe in the jungle. Or maybe we'll take a lunch and just have our coffee there. The 2,300 colon entry fee was reasonable enough for a pleasant morning. I would not, however, pay the $20 US fee that is charged tourists. We have lived 15 minutes from this place in Santo Domingo for 5 years. It was time to see it. We had always planned to take guests there but always ended up filling their time here with other activities and never made it. I guess I'm glad we didn't take them now. Although it would be a pleasant place for a morning with guests, I don't think any of them would find the $20 entry fee a worthwhile value.
August 29, 2007
Grandma brags! That cute guy is Evan (1st son of my son Rob & his wife Polly) ready for his first day of 1st grade. And the adorable little girl on the left is Megan (1st child of my son Mark & his wife Debbie) with her best friend on their first day of kindergarten.
A good friend told me about “couch surfing”. Apparently the term has been used for some time among the college crowd to describe “crashing” on someone’s couch when traveling. Now it’s a huge online site for people who are willing to “host” total strangers
in their homes for a night or two or more, or for travelers who would like to stay in the homes of total strangers in unknown places. Wow! Right up my alley, I thought! Not only a way to possibly meet new and interesting people from around the world, simply by offering our guest room occasionally, but a way to find free places to stay for part of the time when we roam the world! “Sounds dangerous,” says my son. How did I raise such conservative kids? The very day that I joined the group and set up my profile, we received a request from 2 brothers from Ohio who would like to couch surf at our home in October. I’ll let you know how it goes.
August 24, 2007
As a person with zero artistic ability or inclination, In am constantly amazed at the number of artists I know. I even live with one! My husband Gene does mostly abstracts. Over the past several years most of his work has been airbrush on canvas. But he has also done some sculpture and mixed media.
Recently a friend presented him with a large piece of scrap wood and challenged him to "do something with it." With my usual I don't get it reaction, it looked like a piece of wood to me. Several days later, I walked into his studio and saw thls relaxing beach scene. This is why we call him the artist in the family!
August 17, 2007
I try to go to the Heredia market (el mercado) at least once a week for fruits and vegetables. This is not the vast Saturday morning feria, but rather just the everyday market. You can find anything there (well almost). Sometimes when I go on Fridays, I run into my friend Flora. Flora sometimes helps me when I can't figure out how to explain what I want (pork chops thicker than 1/4 inch!) or don't know what on earth some strange vegetable or fruit looking thing really is and what to do with it. I love going to the market. It is so colorful! And so economical. I think I could do all our grocery shopping at the market and feed us well for very little. 'Course that's not what we do. We like all that cool stuff you can get at Mas X Menos (mahs-pour-MEY-nos, or "more for less"). But el mercado is one of my favorite things about Costa Rica.
August 14, 2007
August 10, 2007
Jon & Emma decided we should do lunch to celebrate the 5th anniversary of our moves to Costa Rica. OK. Seemed like we'd been home long enough that it was time for me to come out from behind my books and get sociable. Then Jon suggested that we post a message on the online groups Costa Rica Living and Gallo Pinto telling people where we were going to lunch and maybe a few other people would like to join us. Great idea! 23 people showed up! It was a lot of fun. We got to see some people we hadn't seen for a long time and also to meet some new people. We may tell people where we're lunching more often!
July 19, 2007
Here we are back in our old hometown. Hollywood, Florida has changed a lot since we left 5 years ago. Surprisingly, it keeps getting better. Lots of nice new restaurants to try in the downtown strip. Outdoor tables at a lot of them. Beautiful new sidewalk areas. We like it. Young Circle, previously unused except for a few street people, has been totally redone with a big beautiful fountain, a neat childrens’ area with a cool fountain to run through and fun big spinning toys to lie down on. The entire childrens’ area is covered with some sort of soft artificial material. No concrete jungle here for the little darlings to break their heads on!
Of course we all went to Sushi Blues where Gene and I met about 12 years ago. We always go to Sushi Blues when we’re in town. Here’s Kenny, the leader of the band, one of our favorite people. Junko, his fabulous wife and chef extraordinaire, was off the night we were there, dancing in a ballroom dancing competition. We had gone out to eat early and so didn’t stay long enough to hear the band. Just eat slowly and stay for the music, said Kenny! But we were there way too early. Next time for sure. We haven’t hear Kenny play for a long time. He’s great!
Of course we also had breakfast at Jack’s Diner for a great breakfast. Jack’s is where we ate most of the time during the year that we renovated our house in Hollywood (while living in it, but without a kitchen – interesting!). We used to arrive and yell, “Mom, we’re home!” Dennis and his crew are still serving up great food at reasonable prices for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
We ate at a really neat waterfront fish place on the Intercoastal. It’s been there like forever and I can’t remember its name but for some reason I don’t think I ever ate there when we lived there.
We tried a new fish place on the downtown strip, but it was very disappointing and way overpriced. So we won’t bother to mention it.
Another place that we always have to go when in Hollywood is the breakfast place on the beach. Angelo's Corner. We’ve been going there like forever for weekend breakfasts (when we lived there). They also have pizza and Italian stuff. It’s an Italian name. Antonio’s or some such. But it’s right on the broadwalk, so you get the watch the roller bladders strutting their stuff, runners, bicyclers, people on those bicycle thingees that carry 4 people, and just plain sun-bathers enjoying the fabulous white sand beach. Hollywood Beach is still the best. And they have a beautiful newly paved broadwalk that really fancies the place up.
I get a kick out of going to the grocery store (Publix) with Gail just to look at all the “stuff” that’s on the shelves. It’s overwhelming really. But I like the fact that you can actually buy fresh sushi in the grocery store. My friend Gail loves Publix because they have this really special kiosk where someone actually cooks a meal, shows you how it’s done, gives free advice and recipe cards and sells you all the needed ingredients right there so that you don’t have to go running all around the store finding them. Gail is learning lots of new recipes. She has one for sea scallops that is absolutely dynamite.
There are also condos going up everywhere around Hollywood. I can’t imagine who’s going to buy all those high priced digs. Reminds me of Costa Rica! There is a huge new condo complex right on the railroad tracks that supposedly has apartments starting over $300K. I don’t get it. We can’t afford to move back. Thank God we don’t want to.
We’re on our way home tonight. Back to the “real world.” This one feels especially unreal when looking at things like restaurant prices. Oh, my God! It has been a great trip. We have had a blast and loved getting to see everyone. I hope we’ll see them again soon. It would be nice to get together in Costa Rica next time. Adios mis amigos!