Phrase of the Day

POSTED IN | 12:44 AM
Amigos con Derechos (Friends with Benefits)

a good one to know, i suppose...

Baño Man

POSTED IN | 12:20 AM

~For Mik~

Our teams play soccer in the same park every week. There are several places to use the facilities at the park. Unfortunately you have to pay for it. Fortunately, it's only about 20 cents, and you get to meet people like the Baño Man, as we'll call him.

He's one of the bathroom attendants. He'll whip out his trumpet and play various tunes from time to time. Amusing. Today I told him I play the Trombone and so we shared a brief brass-player camaraderie. And then he played the US national anthem from memory for me. It was actually quite good. I didn't know if I should've removed my hat or stood at attention. So I just leaned against the bathroom entrance and listened to his rendition. Interesting that I was hearing a Costa Rican man play the United States' national anthem that was originally a British drinking song (the tune at least). Globalization in action...or something.

"Oh say can you see..."

He wears a hat constructed of plastic junk-food wrappers. Why not? I think it fits his style.

Fix It


A flattish right-front donut put our war-horse in the fix-it racks. $1.40 repaired the puncture. Notice our tank rests in the Reparaciones Llantas Automovil lane, not to be confused with the Balanceo Automovil berth.




POSTED IN | 12:59 AM
How to buy lemons...

I've been here five weeks and seen this man wear a shirt ONCE.



POSTED IN | 12:57 AM

Man vs. Nature

Wet street.

Children's Home Kiddos

POSTED IN | 10:26 PM
Some shots of the great kids up at the home in Coronado. Finally, some photos of gals on the blog, too. I've had some comments questioning whether there are any in Costa Rica at all. Yep. See for yourself. Some precious niñas can be viewed just below.

Milt makes his first appearance. The kids liked the jacket. And why shouldn't they!

We can go to the river up there. It's very cold and nice.

Ham and butter sammich. Quite good with cafe con leche (with sugar of course).


Big jacket. I'm still learning names, otherwise I'd write them in.

Grocery day.

Milt goes for a swing.


Bedroom playing.

Down the slide.


Costa Rican powerpose. Milt has officially splashed down in Costa Rica.

Saprissa wins 2-1


Went to another Saprissa game. They played Puntarenas last night to decide who will play in the Central American Cup. Or something like that. It was tied late in the second half until Saprissa's show pony, Solis, booted in the winning goal with two minutes left in regulation. Good times. I learned some colorful new language too, furthering my shadier Spanish vocab. This clip is just after Solis scored his goal. Tickets were $3. There were 16 people in our group and we had a great view. Score.

Buy Your Chickens Here

I spotted this truck drifting the streets of La Carpio today. And it wasn't hard to notice. The loudspeaker on top announced its presence quite clearly, as well as announcing the going price of "fat, big chickens." The Birdmen as I'll think of them came down our little street and sold some flappers. So here's how you buy chickens in La Carpio.

Birds for sale.

The extraction. Some commotion and cooing in protest.

The delivery. These birds were quickly dispatched by a swift twist of the neck. And perhaps they bolstered this evening's spread of rice and beans.

"Fat, big chickens." Kluck Kluck! 1,000 Colones will get you two birds. That's about a dollar a pop. A fair price, I think.



Moonrise over La Carpio.

I Like Skype


Mum and the nephews. Joshy (on the right) turns 2 this month. Nice to see one's family back home when you're far away. And for free too. "I still love technology..."

Bits 'n Bobs

POSTED IN | 11:39 PM

Strong suggestion.

Hole-in-the-wall's menu.

Country clothesline.

16.920 liters.


Big dog, little dog. White dog, black dog.

Meat stew lunch.

Loosing the Lexicon

POSTED IN | 10:17 PM
Yesterday I was thinking about the impressively large number of words we're toting unawares in our mother-tongue vocabularies. And for some reason I also wanted to know how to say VOMIT in Spanish (it's Vomitar. thanks, Steve).

And then I thought of all the ways I can say vomit in English. I came up with 15 (with help). Interesting that there are that many ways to get the same idea across.

Languages are highly fascinating and complex things. I recommend learning a new one. It's good for you/us. Makes us think differently (literally) and gives a broader world perspective and foreign cultural appreciation. And oftentimes it means an interesting if not exotic stint in alien lands.

Harry Connick Jr. said "to love the language, you got to be born on the banks of the Mississippi." But I don't think you have to be born in New Orleans to appreciate jazz. And there's no time like the present to pick up some foreign lingo.

I'm sure there are more ways to say vomit, too. Please, share.

Throw up
Toss your cookies
Lose your lunch
Coming back up
Blow Chunks

pre-game pomp

POSTED IN | 12:22 AM

Luis Carlos.


Merrily We Roll Along

POSTED IN | 12:15 AM
I spent some time in Cartago this week, about 30 kilometers to the east of San Jose. My friend Diana (from Oklahoma) and her hubby Josh were visiting her relatives there. Diana and Josh are my friends who got married in Costa Rica this summer, fyi.

But, at one point it came to my attention that Diana's relatives like to cycle. I quickly made it known that cycling is a favorite pastime of mine, and perhaps even a passion. And so I got a nice invite for a short four-hour spin in the Costa Rican countryside. And WOW. What ensued was probably a Top Ten ride of all time for me. And think. The locals can do rides like this all the time. Not fair. I need to get out of the Middle-America flatlands more often...

Anyway. Some shots from the ride.

My rig. Not a bad ride. I'd take it. I hit 60 khr at one point on a downhill. That's about 40 mph for the non-Metric masses. Pretty swift. Good times. No injuries reported.

Guillermo working it. The name of this particular town is Dulce Nombre (Sweet Name). I like that.

We ate papaya and bananas mid-ride for a recharge.

There were some other riders on the trail. Some kind of competition. We got free fruit out of the deal. Not bad.

The crew: Natalia, me and Guillermo. I have an open invitation to visit them any time out in Cartago. I could probably manage that...