I’m living in the clouds, literally. This is the most beautiful countryside I have ever experienced in my life. 5:30am, the sun is up and the Valverde-Abarca family is up and about. We go to the school in La Concepcion for a special Columbus Day activity because Nury works at the school. The children perform dances, sing songs, and read poems out loud. Food is prepared for everyone. I have a couple soft shell tacos, one filled with squash, the other with pork. I also have agua dulce, which is water sweetened with sugar cane. For a country with so much plant life I am missing my vegetables.
We go back to Nury’s house and make lunch. I help a little. It’s quite convenient to have a lime tree in the back yard for the guacamole. For lunch it’s rice, black beans, fried plantains, eggs, and guacamole.
Then Nury, Nelly, Nicki (Nury’s son), and I drive to the next town, San Juan Bosco, which is on the next mountain. They drop me off at Holga’s house (the sister of Luz Chinchilla). I feel quite strange. I already miss them. This entire time Nelly has been apprehensive of the Chinchilla’s because they did not come to get me at the bus stop in Perez Zeledon. She says they have no hospitality, which is uncommon for Costa Ricans. In La Concepcion she asked several people if they knew the Chinchillas. Her brother-in-law said he knew them. I don’t think that really eased her nerves. I really appreciate her care and concern, but I feel relatively safe going to Finca Chinchilla (the farm of the Chinchilla’s). However, the circumstances were odd. Here was this very nice family dropping me off with some people who were still not Guillermo and Luz. I still was not on the farm.
This house was a combination of a little store and Holga’s house. The house is only one room with about four beds in it. I could immediately tell they were much poorer than the Abarca’s. I feel uncomfortable, because I’m not sure this was the relative of Luz Chinchilla. But after asking a few more questions I assure myself it is her. I meet Holga’s four kids. After a few minutes, I loosen up and relax. I am able to talk with all these people and understand most of what they said. I begin hanging out with Laura and Adriana. We go to a cemetery to do some landscaping. Laura weeds and Ardiana, Felix, and I put some sticks around some new plants. I suppose this was to protect them. At that point, Guillermo and Eric come to pick me up. And once again I feel ripped away from some people who I really am starting to like. I even teach Adriana and Laura how to say hello in Chinese. Adriana proceeds to repeat Ni Hao over and over again. I am quite entertained.
Before arriving at the farm, we stop and pick up bunches of bananas. Finally, I am at Finca Chinchilla, after two days of travel. I am welcomed and introduced to at least ten more people. Then we have dinner. Guess what, more rice and beans, and some chicken soup with yuca, squash, and potatoes.
I am now sleeping in a dorm-like room, which reminds me of a room at a campsite. I am sharing a bunk bed with this girl named Jasmine from Germany. She speaks Spanish with a Germany accent as well as some English. We speak in Spanglish, which is quite fun. Already, I have discovered many similarities.