Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Week 1 in Mastatal

So my adventure started right away, about 15 minutes after I got off the plane. There is this policy in Costa Rica that you need to have a return flight upon entrance to the country…I do not have a return flight. The last three times I entered the country I only had a return ticket once, and I’ve never been asked about it. This time, I was questioned about how long I would be here and I stupidly replied “no se….” (I don’t know). And yes, I was having this conversation in Spanish, which I believe threw me off a little. So then we go through this banter about how I might only be here for two weeks, then I freaked out and made sure I still had the 90 day visa and the woman turns to me and goes (in Spanish of course) “Carolyn, yes- you do have the 90 day visa but if you stay longer than 90 days there will be problems.” Dun dun dun….. In the end she let me through and just said to make sure I had a ticket next time but I really thought that she wasn’t going to let me in and my heart was pounding so hard and I thought I was going to have to buy a ticket straight back to NY! Now I have to admit I’m a little worried the government has tagged my name and they’re looking for me now, although Alex says I’m crazy. We made it back to the Ranch the same day to a warm welcome from Robin and Sole (the owner and her 22 month old daughter) and Natilla, the new ranch dog, she’s a beautiful white wolf dog with blue eyes. Natilla is Spanish for sour cream (just a side note there!)

Thus far things have been going really well, and my stress level has dissolved by about 90%. The gardens are exploding and the rains are falling. It’s amazing the difference in just the two months that I’ve been gone from here. The main focus right now is on digging a Tilapia pond. I’m really excited about this and hope to be really involved in this project. We start digging tomorrow and the pond should be 2m at it’s deepest and 1m at the shallow end. It should be fun!! Then we’ll be able to eat fish at least once a week, as soon as they are fully mature. I’m also taking on a small construction project, along with someone who actually knows what they are doing! But I’ll learn…I will! The library/community center project has been put on hold for a little while we figure out the pond project but we’re having a meeting about that later this week.

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