January and February Updates

Suddenly we are four months from the end of our time in Costa Rica. A more reflective (and sappy) post will be coming shortly. For now, however, here is a photo recap of the last few months of adventures.

After the winter stomach bug debacle we decided to take a long weekend to Arenal before I headed back to school. We stayed on the quieter side of the lake and did some exploring of the trails and caves. It was beautiful and so, so windy.

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This guy welcomed us to our Airbnb on our first night.

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View from our Airbnb

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Em had to work that Friday so I took off on a waterfall hike. It was spectacular – here are some highlights.

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I was the only one there – it rocked.

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No – thank you

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Introducing – Zula

You may have seen this video that went viral last year of a Costa Rican dog park. It has ~900 stray dogs and you can go frolick with them for free on the weekends. We found a time that worked and headed that way with some CDS friends. It was as perfect as it looks.

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The Alpha

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Dogs everywhere

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Lots of kisses

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We can’t even handle how exciting this is

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Take note of the dog on the left… yup, you know where this is headed…

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AND the view was beautiful

So that was Saturday morning. On the way there Em and I had the, “There is no way we are coming home with another dog” conversation. Anyway, Sunday afternoon we drove back and picked up Zula (as we have named her). She was the most submissive dog there and really seemed overwhelmed by the number of dogs (we are projecting that on her to make ourselves feel better about being impulsive). She had been abandoned and tied to a church a month earlier and had been at the Territorio de Zaguates ever since. Our time with Zula started as a foster situation; if she got along with Milo we would keep her for a week and see how it went. That went well so the idea is that we will foster her for 5 months (cause 5 months with us is better than 5 months there) and see where we end up. And now we are pretty sure we are bringing 2 dogs with us back to the states. All we need is to buy another Subaru and we’re back in the game. Milo isn’t sure what he thinks yet but he’s being a champ.

She’s the best. Very sweet. Very smart. Very eager to gain our love. She is ~2.5 years old (the cone is from us getting her neutered). We can’t wait for everyone to meet her. We are being crazy dog people and obsessively watching dog training videos and training her (thanks, Doggy Dan). We all know how well Milo listens so we’re trying to get this one right.

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Women’s March

There was a small women’s march in San José that we got involved in. We went to town making signs and loved seeing all the creative ways people were able to express their desire for empathy, understanding, and kindness. There needs to be a whole other post for my thoughts around the election but that will have to wait; I don’t have the energy at the moment. My new favorite past time is trolling Trump on twitter so feel free to follow me there at @k_nicholson.

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Shout out to the CDS mantra from 2015-2016

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We ran into a CDS student at the march. He rocks.

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Connected with teachers from one of the other schools in the area.

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COSTA RICA-US-POLITICS-TRUMP-INAUGURATION-PROTEST

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Past Weekend with Alyssa

Em’s childhood best friend, Alyssa, made the trek down to Costa Rica to soak in the sun with us. We ventured to Rincon de la Vieja and Nosara and along the way laughed and laughed and laughed and ate our way through the most delicious restaurants on the coast.

We spent our first day in the Rincon de la Vieja national park hiking and enjoying a mud bath and natural hot springs.

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Hanging by some volcanic activity

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Taking it all in

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Beware: I took too many selfies

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Reenacting their high school year book photo

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Mud princesses

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Perfection

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On our second day we headed to my favorite beach in Costa Rica (Playa Penca). We were the only ones there for the first 30 minutes and the water is the most perfect green/blue you’ve ever seen. After a 15 minute bumpy ride and a 10 minute walk down you reach this oasis.

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No one for miles

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The water is (always) calling her

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#1 man

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Lunch on the way out of town

After lunch we made the 3 hour ride to Nosara and our car (somehow) survived with no flat tires. The first afternoon/night there we took in the sunset at Playa Guiones. Here is the progression of that beautiful night:

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After a 2nd serving of tune poke (DELICIOUS) at dinner (10pies – nom nom nom) we headed to bed early to prepare for our surf lesson that next morning.

We only have one picture from the surf session and it’s from before we went. This pretty accurately sums up how everyone was feeling.

IMG_2771.JPGEveryone survived and even though we couldn’t lift our arms the next day it was a blast. We had one Blue Crush moment where we all were surfing the same wave so that will go down as a top 10 life moment.

After a late afternoon walk on the beach we headed to the best restaurant in Nosara to celebrate our last night together with many courses and refreshing cocktails.

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I can picture this power crew roaming the halls back in 1995.

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Sunset cocktails

We are so grateful that Alyssa spent some of her valuable time off to come visit us!

Finally, this trip came after a hectic couple of weeks as Em and I tried to decide our next step. In the end, we have decided to move back to the Northeast (for now) as I accepted a job as 8th grade science teacher and 8th grade dean at Greens Farms Academy (Westport, CT). I can’t wait to join a community that felt so welcoming, committed, and driven from the first moment I stepped on campus.

We will be back on the shores of Rust Pond this summer at Wolfeboro before we relocate to the GFA area.

That’s it for now. Four more months of sunshine to soak in!

K

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