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The Change to 8 Digit Dialing draws near

February 29th, 2008

On March 20, 2008, how you dial a number in Costa Rica is going to change. This not only affects those of us IN Costa Rica, it also will affect those in foreign lands who make call TO Costa Rica.

If you fall into either of the above categories, by all means read on!

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US Voting Process

February 26th, 2008

I was shocked and dismayed at this. Although I have no issue with the candidate who was elected, I am sad that much of the political drama in the upcoming 2008 election will now be somewhat less meaningful. I am, however, glad to see that the overt silliness of our political system will remain intact!

Diebold Accidentally Leaks Results Of 2008 Election Early

Costa Rican Typico – Typical!

February 20th, 2008

On a road trip, I stopped at a little “Typico,” which mean typical restaurant, in Costa Rica. I had eaten and swallowed everything in my cooler from chocolate covered coffee beans to Mentos to two bottles of coconut water. Wasn’t doing the job. Finally, after many hold ups for construction, I made it to a place. I ordered the “casado de la casa,” which is the married plate. Basically a large amount of ingredients end up on the plate, married. If I wandered to the restaurant across the road, they’d have the same thing. It’s actually a sure thing at any typical restaurant. And it’s cheap. If you stay away from the pork rinds, nothing’s fried and it’s pretty good for you.

I pulled out my computer to read something I had downloaded and to my surprise! Internet connection. Who’d have thought in the middle of Central America, in a small mountain town I could read about the latest news on the latest book that’s come out about Diana. It’s freaky. A marriage made in heaven.

Thanks for stopping in to this blog.

I Think the United States is Broken

February 9th, 2008

This was not the original title. The original was to be another “My Readers Write” thingy. Alas, I have gone on a rant that may please or offend some of my readers. While replying to the email below, I found myself waxing forth on about 20 other topics, ranting I guess… going off subject… decided it was way too long for an email response, and decided to share it with the world… cathartic I guess, at least for me. Kind of a mental laxative for. It is REALLY long… sorry. My blog.

From Karin:

One thing that worries me about trying to live in CR is the thought of having to be on guard all the time against house thieves. I’m originally from NYC and am used to watching my back in public, but I’m not used to having bars on the windows, etc.

Your page on Culture Shock mentioned that the concepts of right and wrong vary from culture to culture. I’ve heard Ticos blaming most of the petty (and violent) crime on Nicas that have come into the country.

Have you formed an opinion on why “Thou shalt not steal” and “Do unto others, etc.” are ignored by so many people there? Are they less attached to their “stuff” than we are?

So sorry to go astray Karin, but your answers are (buried) here.

I think “stuff” is relative. If the best you can afford is a radio, the loss of that radio is maybe equal to another person losing their DVD player or cell phone… Just my thoughts.

And… if you think the ten commandments or golden rule have anything to do with our 2008 world, you are probably pretty disappointed daily in your life. Ethics and morals have been under attack by the far left for many years, and the US is an example of how a society can deteriorate when it shifts from basic values, religious or otherwise. In fact it is my opinion that it is far worse in the US than here in Costa Rica, though of course there are areas in the US where people still respect one another, the laws of the land and their own God as they define Him or a higher power if that word is better. Of course, they are ridiculed for their beliefs.

I think the USA is broken.

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Discover Spiritual Truths in Costa Rica

February 1st, 2008

Someone told me spiritual truths all stem from the same root. Every few months, I get invited to a very typical, Costa Rican family event. Kids birthdays go like this: give a gift; have a cup of coffee; eat rice and chicken with macaroni topped with potato chips all on a plastic plate handed to you by the host or the person in charge of the kitchen that day (usually a tia -aunt); sing happy birthday; eat cake; bash pinata; more coffee; ice cream cone; and then mill about until it feels socially acceptable to leave.

This event went as usual except for the blessing of the birthday child, her mother, and their home. A woman took out her rosary, a prayer book, and older ladies gathered in a U around a small nativity set with a candle burning in the middle. In my earlier days I would have scoffed and rolled my eyes at the whole thing. Life sat me down and taught me a thing or two. I’ve mellowed. Now I love listening to the rosary. I can watch the mouths of the women race over the prayers in harmony. I can laugh because after many years, I can still whip out a quick Hail Mary with the best of them.

It is such a peaceful thing to pray. No matter the language or religion. It is a moment of thinking about unity, love, forgiveness, and others. Upon finishing, the ladies were served up treats by our newly blessed mom and her three-year old daughter. My daughter came up to me and asked for more candy. My son woke up from his nap, and little ladies who’d come to pray all left for home, holding a piece of birthday cake in their hand and a rosary in the other.

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