Day 57, Domingo 9 Septiembre 2012 21:47
A traditional Costa Rican birthday.
I woke up around 9, had an delicious breakfast and went to the garden to skype home, in the garden there is WiFi of an other house. It was so good the Skype again, there was a lot to tell. My family was going to have a bbq but I was not homesick or anything, just because I am so happy right now.
Around 12 we first went to the grandmothers house to introduce me, this grandmother (mother of 14 childeren) is really nice and treated me like one of her grandsons. Then we drove 15 minutes to a very rural area where a birthparty was. At the party was a lot of family, my hostdad has 11 brothers and sisters and my hostmom 13, so it’s a big family. But not all of them were there but I got introduced to a lot of people. Then we sat down at a table with our family and some uncles and aunts joined. The rest of the party was just waiting on food and eating it, very Costa Rican they said. Everybody was just so nice to me, asking me about The Netherlands, telling me about Costa Rica and stuff. Also everybody tells me I speak really good spanish and they don’t believe I only learned it here in 1 and a half month. Also my hostfamily likes to tell people this J! This new host family is so nice, my hostmom already calls me her son! Also the hostdad is really nice and funny, like all dads are if I quote my biological dad. Also I talked a lot with my host brother and he is really nice, invitng me to do a lot of things, and he is a lot like me. Skinny, lazy and always dropping things and bumping into stuff. It is incredible how I found this new family which fits me so good, without having to search for ages, or without making and comparing all those profiles!
I love my crazy beautiful Costa Rican life!
Day 58, Lunes 10 septiembre 2012 22:15
Feliz dia del niño!
Actually it was yesterday dia del niño (kids day) but we celebreted it on Monday with school. First there were some speeches, one really good one about tolerance, this speech also included a part where the teacher spoke about me as an exchange student. As well we were singing the national anthem and the schoolband played something. This was as well because it was the beginning of the events the following week because it is the week of pattriotism. Everywhere you come you see the Costa Rican flag and the tri colour, the 3 colours of CR blue, red and white. Also I helped decorating the school with these colours and flags. In the afternoon there where all kind of games and also a mechanic bull and piñata’s. It’s a bummer I didn’t bring my camera.
When I came home I helped my little brother with his english homework, bought some things I needed and talked with my family. After dinner I went with my old host brother to some of his friends, we just sat on a corner of a street and talked, but it’s very nice he invites me to meet his friends. Also I already met both grandmothers a lot of aunts and uncles and everyday I get introduced to more family.
This family is a traditional Costa Rican family, which means you eat rice and beans a lot, don’t do more as necceseray and being extremely nice. Also there are a few Costa Rican words which most people use a lot:
· Pura vida, ‘puur life’ means a lot, from cool to goodbye.
· Tranquillo, ‘relax, relaxed’ means that there is no hurry/
· Ahorita, means like a little bit later.
· Manaña, means tomorrow.
· No importante, not important
· Heuvon, no translation for this word
· Mi corazon, mi amor and amorcito, which all means my dear or sweety.
Day 59, martes 11 septiembre 2012 23:11
A new family means as well new friends, and getting introduced to a lot of people. In the evening I went to watch CR-Mexico at a friends house of my bro. All of them were very nice, like all Tico’s are actually. And like always they were firing questions at me, this time it were like 20 teenagers. What do you eat? Do you smoke marihuane, are The Netherlands beautiful? Is everybody rich? Is everything really expensive and all these sort of things. Anyways with other teenagers I like it to tell them about my country and culture. But after the match I went to the house of my bro’s girlfriend, a very religious family. Then the question about religion came up, I said I don’t have a religion nor believe in god. They were pretty shocked, the kids understood but the mom not. She said: ‘but god excists, he created everything.’ I told here that in my culture not a lot of people are religious and that it’s not common to believe in god. I didn’t make any statements about religion, I just changed to subject. I don’t like these talks about religon, but sometimes I have to have them, and when I do it’s better to just say it’s a cultural difference. I would love to make a statement about the big bang and the evolution theory but I think I would insult them so I do not. Also I have more opinions about religion but I think in this culture it’s better to keep them for myself. Also I do respect it that they are religious and as well the people respect other religions but no religion is just very uncommon here.
In school there were again some speeches, this time about recycling and we practiced the national anthem. Saturday is independence day but I have no idea what is going to happen, I do know that I have to come to school to do something. As well I found out that here I do have HBO on the television and my hostmom watches ‘Dexter’ as well, that means I will be watching the new season first of all my friends!
Day 60, Miercoles 12 Septiembre 2012 21:58
I found a sport to practice here, Taekwondo. I had one training, my friend Fabio introduced me. It was pretty cool, but hard as well. But I will go on with it at least for the next couple of days. If I don’t like it, I quit but I think I’ll go on with it.
But way more important: today I got a letter from my grandmother, I took 15 days to get here. It was pretty hard to read the letter but I like it a lot. I will keep writing hand-written letters with my grandmother. As well a waterpolo magazine came from my parents. With this I can finally show a little bit more of waterpolo!
Day 61, Jeuves 13 Septiembre 2012 22:07
Taekwondo part 2
My feet hurt pretty much now, and that feels good! Finally sporting again! yesterday I didn’t wrote that much about taekwondo because I was really tired. But today I went again and I liked it better as yesterday!
Taekwando is a material art, which practically means that it’s an Asian fighting sport I think, I will google it. The teacher is an old man who looks a bit Korean and who became 4th on the olympic games of 1978. Our training area is on a outside small soccer field with a concrote floor and it is done barefeeted. Furthermore it is a fighting sport and you mostly use your feet. At the beginning of the training the teacher spoke for about half an hour, he spoke about discipline, training, taekwondo and more stuff. It was all in Spanish but I think I understood like 90% of what he said. This talk was pretty inspiring, and I kind of felt like church, but the church of sports. After that there was a little warming up, running, kicking, jumping and everything. After that we practiced to names of the positions, some kicks and like a lot of moves quickly after each other but I don’t know them. Everything is pretty hard but I get better in my bad things like my balance, how stretchable my muscles are, my condition and the muscles it self get stronger, so that usefull! The teachers are really friendly and one of them gave me a lot of help, they said if I practice a lot I can participate in mtournaments later this year! That would be very cool!
When I got home I watched the final of futsal, where I wrote about last Saturday. It was Orotina playing again barrusia and Orotina lost with 6-2. Next week is the return, and I’m going to watch for sure!
Day 62, Viernes 14 Septiembre 2012 21:32
It was an amazing day! I carried a fire which was lighted in Guatamala, passed through Honduras, El Salvador and Nicaraqua and now finished in Costa Rica.
The day started normal, going to school with the bus, at school I bought sport clothers, changed and got into the bus. I had no idea exactly what was going to happen, but I did knew we were going to run. After 20 minutes in the bus we stopped and everybody got out. 5 minutes the school from Esparza arrived, with torch and flag. They they lighted our torch, and we started running, around 30 students from our school and some kids from the primary school, which stopped earlier. We passed by a lot of primary schools, and everytime we enlighted their torches and then they ran for a few 100 meters with us. I carried the flag most of the time and the torch 1 time as well! When we arrived near San Mateo where the ending point was everybody who stopped during the run got out of the bus and joind us we were running all the time again. So all of us arrived at the parked, the 2 sixth graders with the torch, us 5th graders with the flag. The whole village came to the park and were clapping and stuff, we ran around the park and then entered the park. At the park there was an other torch enlighted and there was a speech, the national anthem and the flame was passed to other schools. And again one of the speeches said something about, me as an exchange student, it made me feel pretty special and honoured! I thought we were finished but we had to take the flame to some more primary schools, so we ran more. This time it was all up hill so after 4 more kilometres I stopped, I just couldn’t move my feet anymore. I ran most of all students, so when I entered the bus everybody was clapping and stuff. I was so tired after running 16 kilometers, through the mountains without any propiate running shoes. I couldn’t move my legs well anymore, it was amazing!
At home I just rested a few hours and around 3 we went to the barbershop to cut my hair. This was really Costa Rican, my hostmom told me to hurry up, and when we arrived there were 14 waiting before me, and there was 1 guy cutting hair. But I thought, it might go quick and just sat back. After 1 hour my and my hostbro went to walk in Orotina and drink a frozen cappuchino, which was extremly good. When we came back there were still a lot waiting. It was almost my turn at 6, when I already waited 3 hours. But at 6 there was a fiesta in Orotina because it is the night before the independence day. I decided to go there and cut my hair a different time. At the park were a lot of lampions, I don’t know if that’s the correct english word but it is with beautiful lights and stuff. We walked with a lot of people through the streets and ended in the park again. In the park played the Orotina music band and there were more speeches. In one speech I was mentioned again, it was the father of my friend Fabio, he is pretty important and famous in Orotina. He said that he was glad that I joined their community and he asked if everybody in The Netherlands is tall, and he welcomed me to Costa Rica. It was very nice from me the introduce me to the whole village. The rest of the night I walked through Orotina and sat in the park with my hostbro & friends.
Know I am really tired of everything, especially the running and tomorrow is the independence day, so it’s sleepy sleepy time!
Day 63, 15 Septiembre 2012 21:16
191 years ago, on this day Costa Rica got it’s independence from Spain. And that is what we celebrated today!
I got up at 5:30, because I thought I had to go with a bus at 6:30. But I went with a taxi at 8:15 so I wasted some precious sleep. At school I was asked by the school president, -who is one of my best friends here- to carry to flag of San Mateo. We gathered at the soccer field with all the schools from the ‘canton’ San Mateo. There were speeches, singing the national Anthem, and the independence day song. After all this we walked a parade, school by school with band, dancing girls, traditional clothing flag carriers and everything. I walked with the San Mateo flag together with Braulio, the school president who is better known as Jackie Chang. We walked around 800 meters in 2,5 hour. And was incredebily hot and pretty hard to keep the flag up all the time. But it was a really cool parade, but I didn’t see so much of it since I was walking it myself. I was pretty honoured by walking in the parade and a lot of people were watching it. After the parade I got picked up by my hostdad and we went to grandmothers house to have lunch with some family members. I talked with more uncle’s and this one invited me to go sea fishing sometime! It is pretty hard to keep all those uncle’s and aunts apart since there are around 40 of them.
Then it started raining and there were no more parties, I expected that there would be some parties but Orotina doesn’t have such a good party scene, or I didn’t discover it yet. My hostbrother did show me to local discotheque which I didn’t see before.
I liked the indepencdence day, the spirit and the people. But I actually did expect more of it, but maybe that’s just because I celabreted in San Mateo, which is way smaller as Orotina. As well it was pretty weird that not everybody participated, since it is a pretty important day. Some boys were just skating all day and not paying attention to any of this.