Monday, May 30, 2011


Class at 7 today, we went to La Universidad de Paz, which apparently has quite the forest.  We walked around outside and looked at all the plant nurseries for a while, of which he gave us a common name, scientific name, and other random information that I don't understand in Spanish lol and then he took down a barb wire fence so we could go exploring.  The first thing he said : dont walk in the front, or too close to the edge of the path because there are many venomous snakes.  great, thats just awesome.  we didn't see any though, which I was kind of disappointed about since he talked them up so much. It was a beautiful hike though and he brought us up to a point where you could look out at the country and the view was gorgeous! I found a millipede too, poisonous of course. that thing was gross, but at least I didn't step on it.  we were going to go see jaguars, but the park that they stay in doesn't open until June 9th so hopefully we'll go visit then.

My next class was kind of boring, not much happened, afterwards I stayed at the Instituto til it closed at 6, intending to work on my project but I was just so overtired that I could not stop laughing.  Everything, was just hilarious for some reason and I laughed so hard that I was crying, everyone was having a good time though so I guess its ok :]  and since then I have been doing nothing but work on this project, but I had a nice skype break :) always good,  almost time for bed though, two presentations tomorrow!! wish me luck!

Puerto Viejo pictures

so my camera died on Sunday, when everything cool happened... sorry :(

Puerto Viejo

So this weekend was basically awesome haha except for the bus rides. those were just long. 
Friday:  We left mid-day from San Joaqin, to Heredia, to San Jose, to Puerto Viejo, in total the travel time was somewhere around 6 hours.  apparently though later in the date in San Jose there was a huge flood... good thing we left early!  When we arrived at "Rocking J's" our hostel at around 7pm, the whole concept was a little strange.  There was a bar on the outside and through the gate there was the lobby area and 20 ft from there was two rows of hammocks, where we would be sleeping.  there were no walls just a tin roof that covered the bathrooms and the sleeping areas.  We were pretty tired though so we just hung out there for the night.  My friends Casey, Kevin and I wanted to play pool but we needed a fourth person so Casey went and asked a Tico from the bar to join us.  It was fun for a while but then when the game was over there were two Ticos that just would not leave us alone, hahah which if fine, you just have to know how to say no to them.  The three of us ended up staying up until 1:30 am:

Saturday: Woke up crazy early at 4:30 cause I was freezing, they give you a sheet but the man at the front desk was off sleeping so I didn't have one. By 5 there were howler monkeys from far away but they were still very loud, and cicadas which are soooo obnoxious!  half an hour later it was pouring on the tin roof and everyone was up by 6am.  Puerto Viejo is a cute little beach town, not at all like they described it to us, they made it sound like there was a huge drug problem and it was a crowded dirty place, but its very calm and the drug problem they talk about it basically everyone there was always high or smoking pot, it was quite the little rasta town. We had breakfast downtown in a cute little cafe next to the ocean and we all ordered mango pancakes, the pancakes here however, are made with oatmeal so they're not the same ones as in the states. and everything comes with fruit, they were delicious!  Afterwards we went to the beach half a mile down the road, even though our hammocks were right on the beach, it was very small and we heard of a better one close by.  It was beautiful! and the water was so warm that I didn't even end up sitting on the beach at all, a few hours later though we left for fear of sunburn and hunger hah lunch was at a very nice little restaurant, but everything here takes so long to do anything, so we were starving by the time we got our food.  I ordered chicken chalupas and they were sooo good.  So far everything I've eaten here has been great :]  That night we were supposed to go out and have crab races but Casey and I ended up passing out in the hammocks at around 9pm lol

Sunday:  Snorkeling at 8am.  At first it was super sketchy because we were in this little shanty-town and the people running the boat seemed like they were going to scam us but it turned out ok and we were very careful.  They took us to a the national park in Cahuita and the snorkeling was pretty good.  Casey is deathly afraid of sharks and big fish, so when she saw a fish as big as her she grabbed me and swam away fast haha luckily she wasnt there when I almost swam straight into the shark.. THAT was scary.  I understand they dont eat people, it was a nerf shark but it was as big as my arm span, and thats a little shocking.  I had been adjusting my goggles and when I went back under water my face was only a 2 feet away from the sharks!!! but nothing bad happened and it was a lot of fun.  They dropped us off on a beach in the park and it was so gorgeous!! They fed us fresh pineapple and we were visited by a few white-faced monkeys and Rocky my raccoon friend ;]  A few of us stayed in the shade for the most part because the sun was very strong, and we were the only ones that didn't fry, haha and even we got burned a little bit.  I went down a path close by to see what was around and we found a sloth! two toes not three lol  we stayed at that beach for a few hours because it was so nice and then ended up just waiting around for our bus back to San Jose.   We were stopped after about an hour of driving though by the police that were checking peoples passports.  One of our friends Alicia is from the Dominican Republic and she didnt have a copy of her stamp when she entered Costa Rica (because you shouldn't ever have your real passport on you) and so she was taken off the bus and almost arrested until another of our friends went off and negotiated with the police officers. and we finally made it home at 10:30 last night, all of us were exhausted!  Looks like the weekends here are going to be crazy busy!
next weekend is Arenal, after that Tortuguero, and after that we're doing a volunteer river cleanup! who knows after that! 

Friday, May 27, 2011

5/27 Puerto Viejo

In two hours, me and a bunch of other students from school are going to Puerto Viejo for the weekend, I wont be posting anything because Mama and Papa said that it was not a good place to bring valuables but they went on to ensure me that there was no killing there, only drugs hahaha lovely.  but no worries I'll be with a very large group the entire time, no wondering off for me!  It should be fun, I'll update when I return :]
hasta luego!


Today I had class from 11-1 and 2-4 but I came home for an hour for lunch because mama tica insisted haha I probably could have gone all day with the amount of food she gave me for breakfast though.  The classes here are very informal, there was a bird stuck in one of our classrooms (its a very big room with tall ceilings) and so we spent half an hour trying to get the poor thing out, standing on ladders, using brooms, everything haha and finally our teacher just plucked him right out of the air with his hands. poor thing looked terrified. and then we also had a 15 minute break. like I said, very informal.  And my second class is just me and one other girl so that's super informal too.  After classes I hung out with Mama, Papa,  Deivy, Tim and Brenda, and we talked or struggled to talk lol and used google earth to show all the different places we lived and went to school.  That lasted for hours haha through dinner and then it was very late and everyone had gone to bed except for Deivy and me.  He was telling me all about what he wants to do in life, and that he doesnt have school tomorrow because of elections so hes going on his first date!! I'm very excited for him, and hes so nervous its adorable.  He told me its a secret though because he wants to ask her to be his girlfriend but hes afraid she'll say no and if she does know one but me will know.  So of course I promised not to tell anyone.
By the time we went to bed it was past midnight (costa rica time!)
another late night, to go with another early morning! ayy loca

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

5/25 bugs.

today was the first day that I've come across any real pests, there are plenty of flies just hanging around because the doors are always open but usually nothing else. slept til 8 this morning, crazy late, I know. and then when I went downstairs for my shower I opened the door and this GIANT BUG crawls at the speed of light somewhere around the door.  ohhhhh I dont like that at all, but I took my shower and then went to open the door again and it did the same thing!! I dont know how it was hiding in the door, but I couldnt find it after that... not that I really want to see it again.  And then I almost walked straight into a spider when I was in my room like 5 minutes later!! killed it. so proud of myself, except there was another one in my bathroom later on, didnt get that one, so it'll be waiting for me in the morning :( 
I hung out at school today for a while 11-4 and just talked with other students and did my homework, finally got my cell phone too (don't get too excited I'm only using it for within CR) its super old school and impossible figure out, but it works for what I need it to I suppose.  when I was walking home there was a huge thunder storm (typical) and there was no power in the house so me and Deivy played Uno by candlelight haha and then Tim (Brenda,the teacher's husband) and he was our las vegas dealer for black jack haha even mama tica played with us! Dinner was late so I was starving, but I still cant eat all the food she gives me,  but shes learning and asks if its enough or I'd like more now instead of just piling it on.  She tells everyone that I eat so little! but seriously its a ridiculous amount of food.

right this second, theres a bug flying aruond on my walls.. and im not sure what to do about it. definitely freaking me out though, haha i've had that terrible creepy crawly feeling all day, and sometimes its true and theres a bug on me, which doesnt make me any more comfortable abou thtis whole situation. ughhh maybe i'll drown it in bug spray.

anyways. after dinner Deivy and I went to Giovani and Katia's house which is basically connected to this house I found out and ended up playing wii sports haha until just about ten minutes ago because I was exhuasted, still am but hopefully these bugs wont keep me awake.. only 5 more weeks right? I can take it :)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

5/24 only day 4

I didn't have class until 11am today but its impossible to sleep in here, because the sun comes up so early and the dogs and birds chirp away, not to mention its two hours later at home. So I got up around 7 took another cold shower because I cant figure out how to work the heat yet, oh well.  Today breakfast was, again delicious, an egg over easy on top of black beans and rice, and a bowl of fruit (papaya, banana, and watermelon). Marito (mario- the son  not the father) and mama tica had to cut open the bird's cage to take one of them out because it was fighting with the baby birds, so that was quite the commotion, bird feathers everywhere! other than that though, my morning was uneventful, went to class at 11 til 1 which was just a whole bunch of spanish about the different levels of the forest and all that jazz, then class at 2-4 which was kind of boring and stressful because after a while, the spanish just started to blur together and I didnt have enough energy to focus on what she was saying, so yo no comprende.  Walked home after that and did nothing for a long time haha until Deiby decided  we should play a board game hahah "Gran Banco" or the Costarricense Monopoly!! surprisingly I won with flying colors, poor kid didn't know what hit him. but it was still fun! Dinner was Spagetti con "salsa blanco" which was basically a white sauce, not sure what, ham, corn and some sort of green... maybe spinach? it was very good though, I think shes finally understanding too that I cant eat as much as shes always serving me so she told me I could serve myself this time haha thank goodness, not sure I could stuff myself anymore trying not to be rude.   Played with the cat a little bit and talked with mama tica which was good because we have a hard time communicating, her accent is different than anything I've heard and its hard to understand.  Skyped with Jordan a bit, except my computer fails, oh well it was great anyways :]  afterwards, Deiby and Marito came back from church? I think they went to classes because they have a confirmation on the 4th.. but anyways they came back and we played Uno (the card game) for a couple hours which was a lot of fun, got to know Marito a little better too, hes just so shy!!  and now its bedtime! no class until 2 tomorrow though, maybe I'll give sleeping another shot! Buenos Noches!!

iMi Casa!

Monday, May 23, 2011

First day of classes 5/23

So this morning I had to get up super early because I had class at 7am but its two hours earlier here, so really it was like getting up at 8am, which isn't nearly as terrible as 6am. So my bathroom is downstairs and I didnt know how to use the shower because its a little different, and really all you have to do is turn it but it looked more complicated. sooo I couldnt get the warm water to work, so I took a pretty cold shower but it felt pretty good in comparison to the ones I took at the hotel in San Jose.  Then I couldnt figure out how to turn it off, and I didnt want to be super inappropriate and go out in a towel so I had to speed dress and go ask someone for help hahah but I guess I broke it or something because they couldnt turn it off either.. woops. instead they just turned off the water to the shower from the outside haha hopefully its back on for tomorrow, we'll find out I guess. Breakfast was muy delicioso, huevos con jamon y queso, y frutas, fresh bananas, pineapples, mango mmm so good.  My first class is from 7-11 on mondays, tropical ecology, and apparently on mondays we go on field trips, we ended up going to a farm and a  forest, it was very pretty but also very hot. totally worth it though, the only problem is I had no idea what our teacher was saying, at all and we have some really big projects and homework, due very soon... and I dont even understand what they are? awesome. oh well, I'll manage haha then Mario, mi hermano, picked me up for lunch. Hes very very quiet but really nice, he wants to work at Intel, he loves computers, which is why no one ever sees him because hes always in his room, but I got him to come down and talk about school for a little while until I had to go back.  Class from 2-4pm every day intermediate spanish 2, muchhh easier than my first class, this one might be easy, but I wont speak to soon.  I dont remember if I mentioned this or not, but there is a teacher at the institute also living with us, however she teaches in english and speaks almost no spanish, same with her husband, so it makes me feel a little better that I can at least handle more espanol than her lol

Hasta Luego!!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Ps. still 5/22/11

they have a chow (dog) and also they have a cat!! Isabela :) absolutely made my day

The longest day EVER

Pura Vida! (which as was explained to me means "todos"-everything)I'm exhausted so I'm going to try and make this kind of short, well as short as I can make the longest day ever anyways.
woke up early to eat breakfast at the hotel, oh and I forgot to mention the showers at the hotel are excruciatingly hot, seriously I couldnt stand in them for more than 8 seconds at a time, even the sinks were that way. but anyways breakfast was muy delicioso! then we headed out to walk around San Jose for 4 hours, worst four hours ever, if I could have never seen San Jose I would have been really ok with it, haha its not very pretty, and everything is very humid and dirty. The people are very um forward.. no let me rephrase that the men, express how they feel about women, and its very normal, in a nice complimentary yet almost creepy way.  for example, a man came up to me "Oy princessa, te amo!" and they say things like thank you for coming here and wink and touch your arms and everything.  takes some getting used to but its amusing if nothing else
then we packed up and went to lunch at a mall near San Joaquin, all the food there was american: subway, wendys, kfc, mcdonalds, etc then traveled to the institute, which is BEAUTIFUL (ill take pictures soon), and had an "orientation" which meant that they told us all of the important things we needed to know in spanish talking a million miles per hour at students that were falling asleep on the couches. needless to say it was overwhelming and then without a pause our families came to pick us up.
except the wrong family took me away... hahahah they were talking to me and the man asked me if I knew their names and I said Mario? and he was like no..? Raul.  and then we made it to their house and they were like how do you pronounce your name again? Katelyn? uhhh no. woops, so back to the institute for me haha but they were all very nice about it.
finally made it to my real house, where my mother, father, two brothers were, and also my sister and brother in law... who spoke english, made things much easier until he left, which left for a very silent language barrier.
after a while though I spoke with Deiby, who is 16 years old.  Oh also, we had pizza for dinner as my "welcome home" treat haha and ice cream because I said it was my favorite food :)
I'm sure theres a lot more but I cant think on so little sleep, theres internet in my house though so thats good and means I will probably update more often!
Hasta Pronto!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

We Made It!!!! 5/21/11

I made it safely to the hotel in San Jose and we’re going to be meeting everyone in the group for dinner at 6 o’clock.  Air travel was crazy today but we managed to just make all of our flights (and have time to eat too!)  We finally found the API lady that was waiting for us after about a million people asked us for a taxi and said “thank you beautiful ladies for coming”.  They all seem very friendly so far but there isn’t a whole lot of English speaking happening.  Right now its more of a shock than anything else, I understand some of it but there hasn’t been a whole lot of responding going on haha.  We were told that we’re going to the mountains tonight for dinner? Even though we’re in the middle of San Jose… so that will be interesting.  By the way mom, it is a two hour time difference :P and also I have a very small calling card but it wouldn’t let me leave a message so I’ll probably call again sometime soon if I get a chance.

Just checking in, Hasta Pronto!! :) <3

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

11 days in counting!!

Hey everyone, this is a blog of my adventure in Costa Rica for 6 weeks this Summer!! I'll post random updates to let everyone know how things are going, so hopefully you enjoy it!