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Journals from Costa Rica Fall 2008

2008-09-24 McDonald’s or Coka Light, Costa Rica Does it Right

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The Biggest Carreta in the World (Sarchi)

Well, things are still going smoothly, (or slimily if referring to the state of the sidewalks after it rains) down here. Were still loving the vida costarriquena and cherishing the laid-back lifestyle. Some big news: weve all officially discovered how to have hot water showers. Other big news: WE ATE MCDONALDS!! Okay thats not such big news but when you eat rice and beans 3/3 meals out of the day, the golden arches can be pretty alluring. A BigMac meal with Coka Light was definitely in order. For those of you out there that havent tried Coka Light- its a must have. Its so much better than Diet Coke because it contains some sweetener thats much better than Splenda, which isnt allowed in the US, but whatever it is it makes Coke way better. Last weekend we went on a gira (field trip) to San Jose, the capital city. It was so cool, and very exciting to see a big city again. It has real-live skyscrapers and big fancy hotels and the whole shebang. That may not sound too exciting to those of you thatve been spending your time in the Metropolis of MacTown, but for us little San Ramoners it was quite the sight. The first day we walked around the city and saw many famous sights, among them the Museo Nacional, which is where the decision was made to abolish the Costa Rican army. It was formerly the main military barracks in CR, but was converted to the National Museum after the army was eliminated. Then we got to go to the Mercado (Market) in downtown SJ, which was so rad. Our professors told us that if you cant find something there, you wont find it anywhere in Costa Rica and they werent kidding. Its full of hidden treasures, including plenty of pleasant open-meat market scents (yuk!). Then that evening we got to go to the Teatro Nacional to see a jazz quartet, which I thoroughly enjoyed. It was no Ella Fitzgerald (especially not since it was instrumental) but they were very talented. We spent the next two days visiting Volcan Irazu, tons of churches; some really cool ruins that the Spaniards left behind, and the city of Sarchi where Carretas are manufactured. (If the word carreta doesnt mean anything to you, refer to journal entry #1.) It was quite the action packed weekend, and we learned lots of cool stuff. Once again we got to see in real-life things that wed read about and learned about in the classroom. Im telling you- if all history classes had been that way growing up I wouldve aced each and every test. History, like everything else in life, is so much more interesting when you get to experience it for yourself rather than take someone elses word for it.

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