Sunday, March 30

Sunset Sunday

I get lucky ever now and then.
This is the real deal. No retouching. I only added the letters.

Saturday, March 29


The Nesting Palm

I was going to do T.G.I.F. for Friday's post but said screw it. Something happened yesterday that got me way off track. Besides, most people here work 5 1/2 days and 'Friday' ain't no big deal. I look forward to the open farmer's market here every Friday. Most others look forward to a Pilsen.

I was doing a little gardening when I heard this big commotion at the palm tree in my yard. The Zanates have moved in and built their nests there. Remember "The Mating Tree"? They don't go to that tree now, it's the palm tree where they hang.
I look up and there is this falcon. I haven't checked to see what kind he is, maybe you know? He looks magnificent at first until I realize what he is doing. He is picking off the baby chicks, one by one.
All the other Zanates are going crazy and buzzing around him but none of them are attacking. They were having a fit. The tree is over 35' and there was no way I could reach up there. (note to self: get a slingshot) If all of them were to attack, it would force him out but they didn't. They just squawked around him. Nothing like the sounds they typically make. It was definitely a distress call and all the birds came.

The hawk stayed in the palm over an hour, picking his way through the different nests. I know stuff like this happens, I watch Animal Planet, but it really bothered me that I could not rescue the babies and it happened right in my own back yard. I've grown quiet fond of the Zanates.

Even the little green lories showed up and watched.

Just as I was signing off, I heard this flutter of cackling outside and sure 'nuff,
Heee'S BACK. He's come for some more fine dining at the nesting palm, he's version of a T.G.I.F. restaurant. I guess that's one way to keep the population of Zanates down.

Thursday, March 27


"Hwáybayss" and that's how you say Thursday in Spanish. Jueves is real similar to juevos but that has a totally different meaning. Juevos is eggs. Just by changing one letter, it changes the entire meaning. THAT makes it hard on a gringa that puts a southern drawl on her Spanish words. It's noo wonder they don't understand my Spanish.
When I first came here, I was out on the beach after sunset and the no-seeums ate my legs up! I had bites all over and was going insane not to scratch them. I was told it would make sores if I scratched them. I went to the pharmacy to get something, anything for the bites. The pharmacy lady came over to help me and I explained while pointing down to my legs - "Yo necessito algo por picha bites". I didn't know "bites" in Spanish then and it's common to mix English with Spanish. She looked up at me with the weirdest expression, totally dumbfounded. FINALLY, she figured it out and said "AHH, BICHA!". Come to find out, "Picha" (pee-cha) is penis in Costa Rica. "Bicha" (bee-cha) is for bug.
One letter can make all the difference.
.....a reader wrote in that eggs are "Huevos" which is absolutely correct. Sounds real similar though....AND, it's "BICHO" for bug. ANYWHO, ya'll get the idea!.......

Speaking of bites, it's hot here, very, very hot. And dry. The ticks and ants are out in full force. My dogs pretty much let me know this with their scratching and on close inspection, I am finding baby ticks in their ears and paws. I've had "louse in my house" and don't want that again so the photo is what I use to control the ticks and fleas. I have something else for the ants - "Ain't just Ants in Costa Rica".

Are you watching Oprah's Big Give on ABC Sunday night and the VERY SPECIAL classes Oprah is giving on Eckhart Tolle's book "A New Earth"? Just checking, don't want you to miss out on these events. You can log onto and it will direct you to how to take the class.
Trust me on this one, it could change your life.
Here's the link to the class.

Wednesday, March 26


That's Spanish (myéRkohless) for Wednesday. No, they don't capitalized the beginning letter of the days of the week, not even domingo (Sunday). Nor do they capitalized the months of the year. Just one of those things here that is different.
Miércoles sounds a lot to me like 'miracles' and surely there are those of you sitting there thinking it will be a miracle if you can get accomplished all that was planned for the week.
Speaking of miracles, before I came to Costa Rica, I was taking Rakú classes. I loved it. Now, I would like to do pottery here but have no idea where I would find/buy a kiln. Any suggestions? Rakú is really cool but I doubt I can get the clay here. You can however, extract pottery clay from the earth around the Guanacaste area (or so I've heard). Most of the pottery made in Costa Rica is from that area (so I've heard). Nearly all of the pottery sold by vendors walking the streets of Jaco is made in Nicaragua.

That's a snake coming out of the mouth on the left and a monkey's face under the chin of the other.

Before I came to CR, I was interested in making masks. My theory is everyone has a mask, different ones for different people. An illusion of what that person is or how they want to be seen.
Here are some of my masks. The "Comedy and Tragedy" masks and a self portrait mask. If I did the self portrait again, I would put the other side of the face in now. I've discovered much about life living here. Mostly about myself and of course, the little quirks to living in a foreign country.

Tuesday, March 25


I've always loved Tuuuesday. You have to say it like that - TUUUesday.
The thing I love most about Costa Rica is the fresh fruits and vegetables. Granted, when I go to the local market, I don't know what a lot of things are but I am on a quest to learn what it is and how to prepare it. We all know what these are. They're cheap and plentiful here.

So, what is this - a vegetable or a fruit?

The last photo is Sineguelas (Spondias purpurea) or Spanish Plum in English, and is native to Mexico and the western coast of Central and South America.
link -

Comment from reader: "The bottom photo is of pejibaye, or peach palm, and I agree, it smells awful. But it tastes great, so buy & it a try it!
The middle photo is of chayote, which is a squash. You'll find pico de chayote a lot in restaurants, as it's very, very tico. If you like squash, you'll probably like this."

To reader (Erin):I checked out pejibaye and it looks different from the photolink -

Monday, March 24

Monday, Monday

Spring is here, or at least I think it is. It's hard to tell living in a place where there are always flowers, year round and it NEVER gets very cold.
I tweaked the petals and bulb with Photoshop on this one. Not much though. The bright orange is the wall color.
Photo was taken outside of the new entrance to the old Hotel Cocal and Casino. Now they have condos, too. Actually, Cocal, one of the oldest hotels, was one of the first to construct high rise condos. They're not very high in comparison now.
Mondays....don't you just love them. Just another day in paradise where the days and weeks kinda all run together.

Sunday, March 23

Easter Sunday

Go here for Good Friday in Cartago. Semana Santa is taken very seriously here in Costa Rica.

link -

Sunday, March 16

Church on Sunday

I think this church is near Esparza.
This week, I hope everyone participates in "random acts of kindness".
We have 'Semana Santa' this coming week here in Costa Rica.


Saturday, March 15

The Iguanas

Isn't he amazing? Click onto photo to enlarge to see the detail.
Click arrow (top left) to get back here.

They're everywhere. This is one hanging out in the hibiscus bush after having his fill of hibiscus flowers (amapola). I watched him. In fact, I know this iguana. He's the one the pups caught. Big Max had the iguana in his mouth and I was expected a fight over it. I've been working with the dogs and that day, I saw it pay off. I firmly told Max to drop it, AND HE DID. I calmly (in a stern, deep voice) told them to "get in the house" - AND THEY WENT IN! I couldn't believe it. They listened and did it. All four of them.

The iguana looked dead but I saw Max catch him and I knew he hadn't hurt it. Usually, given time, the pups will tear the iguana's guts out. In those cases, the iguana goes to the river and joins the food chain. This iguana, I caught Max catching, was just playing dead. They do that. Don't bury them until you know FOR SURE they're dead. They play possum for a long while. I've bagged them before and I felt real bad when I figured this out about them.

This iguana was too alert for me to pick up and put outside the fence so with the dogs inside the house, we just let him hang out until he was ready to run off. The iguana still hangs out around here, just now, it's outside the fence.

Friday, March 14

"Blackbird singing in the dead of night..."

I don't have to You-tube this for ya. (here's lyrics)
Everyone knows the Beatle's songs. They are inspirational. Which reminds me, I saw on t.v. clips from a new movie, "Across the Universe". All Beatle songs. Can't wait to see it!

It hasn't been till recently that I have "put attention" to the Zanates around my house. I was amazed with the abundance of them, I had not one photo, not one. I really considered them a pest and not "photoworthy".
Not anymore. Here's are some of my photos of the Zanates...

::::::::keep scolling, I added more photos and took off the ones I borrowed....
to the new photo on The Mating Tree.


Monday, March 10

Zanate Birds

Photo - Up high in the palm tree, watching over the nest.

If you are curious about the Zanates (Great-tailed Grackle) and like little stories, check out the link below. I got curious about these birds and googled it. I also added another one of my photos to "The Mating Tree" story.

I was able to watch the WORLD WIDE webcast of Oprah's "A New Earth" with Eckhart Tolle. It was amazing. I felt a part of something really, REALLY BIG. I hope you make time for it. Seven o'clock, in Costa Rica, Monday nights for the next 8 weeks now. It's all at You can also catch up on last week. 2,000,000 people viewed it so far.

Here's the story of the Zanates
Night, night.

Tonight's the night!!

It's the second on-line LIVE web event offered TO THE WORLD via Internet by Oprah. They will be discussing the second chapter of "A New Earth" by Eckhart Tolle. You can log onto to sign up and watch this special event. Last week, I was knocked off due to all that responded but was able to watch the show in it's entirety on Tuesday. It was great.

I can't stress this enough. Please make time. The moment you accept this invitation is the moment your life may change, if you are open to change.
Remember the time changed on Sunday so I think class starts at 7:00 p.m. in Costa Rica. Log on early as more than 800,000 have signed up for the class. If you miss it, you can always sign on and catch up. Just do it. Make the time. It could change your life.

I got to watch Oprah's Big Give last night on ABC. Last Sunday, we didn't have ABC working so I missed it. What a great idea for a new t.v. game show!!! Leave it to Oprah to teach us how to give, really give and GIVE BIG!!

"I love Oprah, just ask me why."

Sunday, March 9

The Mating Tree

It has taken me awhile to realize the importance of a simple Almendro (almond) tree living right outside my living room, kitchen, and bedroom windows. When I bought my house, the tree was rather small. It grew and encroached on my house and over-head wiring, so I cut it back. Too me, it was just a pain in the butt tree with leaves that fell constantly. It offered shade but I couldn't park my car under it for the iguana and bird droppings.

I have since come to realize the importance of that particular tree.

When I bought my house, I was immediate thrown into the turmoils of renovating. Everything was new to me, things like how to get supplies for the projects, how to even ask for what I needed not knowing Spanish, it was a daunting task. "Back then" at the hardware store, everything was behind the counter (for security reasons) and you had to ask for what you wanted. They might or might not have it. Needless to say, it was a challenge but suffice it to say, I was not as aware, as I have become to be, of my surroundings...
Back to my story.
The flock of "Zanates" (crow like black birds that oroginally came down from Nicaragua) were not much ever noticed until I was installing my fence as the final BIG($$) project. (In hide site, I would have done THAT, the security part, FIRST!) The welders worked under the shade of that tree and stored their equipment there as well. The bird droppings from during the night would cover EVERYTHING. They rigged up a long rope tied to a branch and extended it across, fastening it to the fence post. I would hang on this rope tied to the tree every evening, in a jumping fashion, to rattle the branches and scare off the birds from nesting there during the night. Did it work? At first. The Zanate bird is smart and quickly realized, I was no danger.

One year, it became so severe (the amount of birds in that tree), out of sheer frustration, I had every damn leaf and branch cut off the tree. I knew the tree would return and finally, my purpose was realized. No more bird do-do for my dogs to eat like candy snacks! Peace and quiet at last.
I had won, Finally, or so I thought.

This year, the branches and the big floppy leaves have returned and the birds returned, too. IN FULL FORCE, Flocks and Flocks! Promptly at 5:45 pm, they would start the gathering and chatter away, LOUDLY, until 6:20 pm when one would make a "thrilling" (twirl the r) sound and they all would shut up. Only if something would disturb them in the night would they even utter a peep. Great security for me. At sometime around daybreak, the "Fiestas de los Pajaros" (Bird Party, I call it) would begin again, IN FULL EARNEST. I tired squirting the water hose on them, raking a long pole through the branches to scare them. I even built a big leaf pile and ignited it just at the crucial moment when they had settled in. In know, that was mean but I got desperate. The smoke drove them away but not far. They returned soon after the smoke cleared. I was ready to cut the tree down and then I started listening to them and enjoying being a part of the sunset and sunrise celebration. Instead of getting frustrated in the mornings, I listened to their "music" and I was somehow transformed into being very happy to wake up alive aside them. So simple not to fight it.

It was when my friend, Peggy, came to visit that I was nervous about the birds being here at those precise hours EVERYDAY and their loud "noise". She witnessed it and wasn't too pleased with the wake-up call but came to enjoy it (I hope). One day, she came into the house from a walk on the beach at sunset and told me she saw ALL the black birds heading in the direction of my house, MY TREE. Like something out of a movie. The birds were passing many perfectly good Almendro trees to come roost in "my tree".
She was amazed.
I was amazed. Why me?

During the past week, the tree has been silent in the evening and mornings. The mass of birds are no longer coming daily to nest. It is nothing I did, I assure you. I gave up and gave in. I figured it out that THAT tree is their mating tree. I have birds ALL around my house ALL of the time. All kinds of birds. It is still like that here even though there is tons of construction. The birds are holding their ground, still. I have missed the happy churping in the evening when I am preparing the food for the dogs. I got used to it. I miss my wake-up call from the birds in the mornings that says to me to be happy to be alive and have another day.
Truly, I can hardly wait until the mating season is here again and they come back to "their tree".

Church on Sunday

Does anyone see the woman sitting on the church steps? Sometimes, just being in the Presence is comforting.

Thursday, March 6

Farewell CNBC

I've stated in the past that I couldn't live here if I didn't have channel CNBC for business and stock information. Well, Cable Tica has dropped that channel and I haven't started packing. I wrote to them asking what happened and here's what I got:

From Me - WHAT HAPPENED to my favorite channels???
I am still paying the same price and have less service.
Please explain. I NEED CNBC.
Pura Vida, Teri in Hermosa/Jaco

From Them - Mensaje de Ejecutiva Servicio al Cliente: (2008-03-05 15:23:54)
Dear customer:
Unfortunately we close the contract whit CNBC; they won’t transmit the signal anymore.
Really we are sorry about it.
Have a wonderful day.

The stock market is sucking big donkey d right now but I still have an investment I need to watch. To "close the contract" with my cable company (Cable Tica) would be my first reaction but I'd miss my tele too much.

Any advice, any alternate cable service here in the Jaco area? I'm open for ideas.
I sure do miss those guys at CNBC. I've watched them for YEARS. Bloomberg is no substitute.

Signed, Helpless in Hermosa

Wednesday, March 5

"I think, therefore, I AM" - NOT

Having read "A New Earth" has reminded me of my past studies. I have read many books similar to this one but the first book I ever read on the subject of consciousness ("conscience", to be exact) was Carl G. Jung's "Man and His Symbols". I think he died before it was ever published. It was required reading when I was in college studying philosophy/psychology. All of the books by Norman Vincent Peale were required reading by my mother. She was not delighted by my "enlightenment" in college since I questioned some of the Baptist doctrine.
I've since resolved those issues within myself and enjoy reading books like "A Purpose Driven Life", all of Gary Zukav's books, "The Road Less Traveled", etc.
Without these books, I probably would have never stepped outside my comfortable life to experience a new life living in an unfamiliar country where I didn't know the language. I am happy my search for Self has lead me to Costa Rica to experience living again, anew.
BTW - "I think, therefore, I AM" is a misconception. "I am what I am" - didn't Popeye say that?? No truly words ever spoken.

Tuesday, March 4

Phone numbers are changing for ALL of CR

"Thursday, March 20, 2008, the Costa Rican Institute of Electricity (ICE) will put into effect the new telephone numeration that will consist of 8 digits for residential and commercial telephones in addition to cellular telephony.

As of that date, telephone clients must dial the digit “2” before the already known number for fixed telephone lines and the digit “8” for cellular phone numbers.

The new national numeration contemplates the National Telecommunications System’s (SNT) current and future needs and considers the growth and distribution of the clients in addition to the capacity to satisfy new facilities and services demanded by technological innovation."

I don't know how we are to fill out standard forms that require a seven digit number.
Has any country every done something like this?
I must be missing something. How can adding a 2 in front of the current phone numbers generate more numbers for their use?
Why don't they just use area codes for Costa Rica instead of the one "506"?
Why am I asking "Why"? I've lived here long enough to know, don't ask why, just go with it and be happy to be here. Pura Vida

Monday, March 3

Alert - A New Earth is tonight

This is a world wide on-line class brought to you by Oprah
and Eckhart Tolle (along with all the sponsors).
You can download the book at
Go to for info on signing up for the class.
Please don't miss this special 10 week event starting tonight.

Postscript: About 15 minutes into the on-line broadcast, my Internet feed slowed to a stop. Good thing I recently read the book because it's message helped me to cope with this huge disappointment. Oprah will be posting this first world wide on-line event in it's entirety on her website. I hope you make the time to read the book and join in on this special 10-week event.

Sunday, March 2

Church on Sunday

I know, you all think I go inside these churches but I don't. I take photos of them and post them on my blog to memorialize my mother. She was always in church on Sunday, God rest her soul. She would be proud and fascinated to see the various churches in Costa Rica. I do it for her.
Today, my 'soapbox sermon' message to you is:
This should be typed in flashing red indicator warning light letters. I don't know how to do that but just remember these four little words, Change or be changed. Burn it into you conscience thinking until it becomes your way of life.
You know what I'm talking about... you know the roof leaks but it's dry season now and you wait to get it repaired but now it's raining and ..... you get the picture. We wait for what? to make us make a change. Our options are sometimes less and more stressed when we wait to be changed.
If life has taught me anything, it is to be PROACTIVE than reactive.
Change or be changed, it's so simple.
Before you click onto comments to leave me a message (I wish) or click over to another's blog, write it down... "Change or be changed".
Pura Vida, Teri

Thank you for your comments. I rarely preach but this motto has been burned in my brain for years, I just fail to practice it at times and I always learn the lesson over again.

I read the book "A New Earth" by Eckhart Tolle today and it's as good as Oprah claims it to be.
Well worth the read and the day it took to read it.
The on-line 10 week class begins tomorrow night for the WHOLE WORLD to participate. Amazing, huh?

go to for details to attend.

Saturday, March 1

A Song for thought

I don't listen much anymore to Billy Joel but when I heard this song, a flood of thoughts came back about my life and my choices for it's direction. One of the best concerts I've ever been to was in Tampa when Billy Joel and Elton John played together. We all were much younger then. Amazing concert. Dueling pianos.

I would love, love to put my photos to music in a video. Does anyone out there do that and can anyone direct me to the source that will teach me how?

I've posted this song for you to remember it's YOUR BEST LIFE so go do whatever your heart desires and hopefully, it will touch others in a positive light and your life will be enriched as well.