Total Destruction to Tourist Mecca: Limón

On April 22, 1991, at about 3PM—three years before my first trip to Grape Point*— a 7.7 magnitude quake that killed 65 people and injured hundreds of others, tore through Limón province. 22 seconds of shaking knocked out bridges, buckled steel girders like toothpicks, destroyed roads, split pavement open like melons, and twisted railroad tracksContinue reading “Total Destruction to Tourist Mecca: Limón”

Talamanca, Maps, and Why Everything Here Has at Least Two Names

As long ago as the 1700s, fisherman plied the southern Caribbean waters because of the abundance of turtles that came every year to lay their eggs. These fisherman took the meat and sold the valuable shells. These would later be transformed into European hair brushes, combs, spectacle frames, guitar picks, and countless other items madeContinue reading “Talamanca, Maps, and Why Everything Here Has at Least Two Names”

Finding Ideas in the Time Suck Called Facebook

It’s been so long since I last posted to my blog, I feel as though I need one of those WordPress introductions—Hello World!—that appear on your brand spanking new blog. This year I’ve been out of ideas, out of practice, and out of sorts for a good long spell. Some is self-inflicted (blocks, procrastination, self-criticism)Continue reading “Finding Ideas in the Time Suck Called Facebook”

Book Review on Writing Memoir

“There are thousands of books on the subject of writing, and many of those are about memoir. In my mind, only a few stand shoulders above the rest. Handling the Truth: On the Writing of Memoir by Beth Kephart is one of these and a fine addition to any aspiring memoirist’s reference library.” I’ve writtenContinue reading “Book Review on Writing Memoir”

Everything but the Kitchen Sink

“Use It Up, Wear It Out, Make It Do, or Do Without.” This morning A and I were at the local ferretería buying silicone, an inner tube, and some other hardware odds and ends. I was standing at the counter waiting for our vendador, disappeared momentarily into the stacks for one of our items, when my attentionContinue reading “Everything but the Kitchen Sink”

Boredom Abounds, But Is That Bad?

  I’ve often marveled at my husband’s ability to find pleasure in the mundane. He finds projects around the house and property that need attention and applies himself to them without complaint. He is currently scraping, sanding, and repainting individual pickets on our veranda. On the other hand, I vocally suffer from what Dostoevsky referredContinue reading “Boredom Abounds, But Is That Bad?”

Moin: Are Limón Dockworkers Crazy?

I read several English-language newspapers every day to get a feeling of what is happening around the country. This past week I read about the proposed billion dollar Moin dock expansion in a publication I have mixed feelings about—the editor’s political views seem diametrically opposed to mine. Anyway, his editorial comment at the end ofContinue reading “Moin: Are Limón Dockworkers Crazy?”

Cacao, Miss Olga, and A New Beginning

  I read in The Tico Times this morning that a French competition awarded first prize for Latin America to a sample of cacao grown on a farm in San Carlos, Costa Rica. This does my heart good. When my husband and I first arrived in Punta Uva in the late 1980s, the people hereContinue reading “Cacao, Miss Olga, and A New Beginning”