Visiting Rio Claro is like stopping somewhere in South Carolina or Georgia on Route 1! It's kind of a no where town with a big highway running right through the middle. It has the WalMart of grocery stores, Pali. A bank, a bunch of restaraunts that remind me more of Panama than Costa Rica and a few rundown looking hotels, that aren't that inexpensive really.
My travel partner Orlando and I have been tent camping for the better part of 3 weeks along the Pacific coast. We spent the first week or so in Dominical rubbing elbows with some fishermen from a local association, which was interesting. I learned to make yet another version of fish soup from a wife of a member. We then traveled down the cost to visit Curre for a couple nights and to drop off some homegrown rice and beans to Orlando's family. After that we were headed to Corcovado, a national park that starts near Drake Bay and runs almost to Panama. Drake Bay was interesting as was the looooong boat ride, we decided to get off near the last small local store and spend a night before entering the park. Good thing because I started getting migrains and feeling woozy so after a rather short walk in the park, we changed plans. The park is beautiful as were the scarlet macaws and howler monkeys and we hope to return someday soon and actually hike. We set out a day later for Puerto Jimenez then Golfito in the hopes of visiting a friend at the Rainbow Hostel, only to find out that they had sold the hostel the week earlier. We were given the suggestion to travel to Pavones instead, which turned out to be a good experience...even with the earthquake tremor, a couple rain showers and an invasion of baby frogs (okay not really that bad personally, tho very interesting to see thousands of hopping things in the beach sand). While there, Orlando was invited to a meeting in preparation for classes to certify Tour Guides which he found interesting - so we spent a few days so he could tutor with a local teacher and yesterday morning we made our way to Rio Claro for the entrance exam - to see if he can qualify for classes! This is a big step for him and I certainly am proud that he is willing to give it a shot, cut his hair (he had long hair for 30 years!) and put in all the study time after being out of school for so long. It is a wonderful opportunity for him and other Ticos, especially those with little or no income. The agency providing these classes will provide, food and shelter along with the lessons so that helps a lot.
While traveling, I have certainly been processing my life experiences. I also came across a couple books that have been interesting and have touched some of my sore spots in life. One a novel called The Wildflowers, which is about 4 girls entering group therapy for the first time, the other The Secret Life of Bees...which I never had picked up before.... ya, processing, that's what this is called.
I kind of want to talk about what happened to my "Simply Home" project recently AND I am aware of a need to be careful how I deal with that issue. I no longer live at the rustic home I built, the events that changed that chapter of my life are definately part of this process as is the higher cost of living that now exists in Costa Rica. I have been wondering how differently I might be living back in the states after nearly 4 years of being away, growing and changing.... just another of many thoughts and ideas... we will see what comes up as the day goes along - I rented a hotel room for 2 nights while Orlando goes through his testing process and our bodies get a break from sleeping in the tent. It is a nice hotel, though at this price, 2 nights is all I can afford and still eat!