A Travellerspoint blog

General Update

too many different topics to focus on one

sunny 85 °F

So I have temporarily resigned from my duties as a ranch intern and will be spending the majority of my time as a student in a Permaculture Design Course for these next 2 weeks. There are 7 interns as well as 7 or 8 other students from around the world enrolled in the course. There are people from England, Belgium, Italy, Denmark, Austalia, Costa Rica, Spain, and ofcourse the states. The course is taught by a world renowned permaculturist and upon completion of the course we will be dubbed certified permaculturists. The course lectures and hands-on applications range from "bioregional designs, natural building, renewable energy choices in North America and the Tropics, agroforestry, composting toilets, methane biodigesters, watershed management, community development, tropical and temperate garden and orchard design, energy and nutrient cycling, and the integration of animals into cultivated ecosystems". I am hoping that this course will not only help me design my own sustainable homestead in the future, but also open job opportunites at some point.

My original motivations for coming here were to learn hands-on how to build a house from the design process to the finished structure. Unfortunately, as time has gone by rapidly here I started to realize that my goal was probably not going to be accomplished... until I talked to another intern who was realizing the same disappointment and we came up with an idea together. So we are in the designing stages of a bamboo composting toilet structure which we will hopefully be able to finish before the end of the internship. It may be a bit smaller scale that I was orignally thinking but at least I will see the process through and build something with my own hands :)

Last weekend I went to the beach with a bunch of the locals. It was nice to finally see the ocean after being here for almost 2 months and only being about 7km from the ocean. On that note, one interesting fact is that even though the beach is only 7km away it actually takes 1-4 hours to get there depending on whether you take private or public transportation. Luckily it only took us one hour. Anyway, it was a great trip to get to spend some time with the local families and get a chance to observe their culture a bit more. We spent most of the day playing soccer on the beach, but ofcourse I also headed down the beach solo for a bit of quiet time on the more wild part of the beach, it was really beautiful. A funny moment I observed with the locals was when we made a quick stop at a grocery store on the way home and one of the little kids peed his pants, so all of sudden each mother grabbed her respective child and carried them to parking-lot with their pants down to let them pee. At one time there were about 6-7 little kids peeing all at the same time next to our bus. Robin, one of the ranch owners, has raised her daughter diaper-free and has managed to convince several of the local women to do so as well instead of their usual backyard diaper landfill/burning method. It was really cool to witness.

Playa Esterillos

Playa Esterillos

Mermaid Statue

Mermaid Statue

That same night there was a big dance in a nearby town that a bunch of us interns went to. The town converted their community center into a giant life-like dance club with huge speakers and lights and everything. People came from all of the surrounding towns and their ended up being about a 50/50 mix of gringos to ticos. We all danced the entire time and had a ton of fun. When we finally decided to leave we thought it was a good idea to start walking home (about 3 miles up and down a steep dirt road through the countryside) rather than try to get a ride from one of the drunk locals in the back of their pick-up truck like everyone else was. We made it about half-way after coming across a poisonous coral snake and getting a bit tired when one of the public buses came barreling down the road behind us with the music pumping, and they stopped to let us on to take us the rest of the way. There will be one more dance in mid-august that we are all looking forward to.

DSCN9019.jpgDSCN9020.jpgDSCN9025.jpgsunset over the ranch

sunset over the ranch

dinner table

dinner table

Baking Day - sourdough in a cob oven

Baking Day - sourdough in a cob oven

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A boquet I made <img class='img' src='http://www.travellerspoint.com/Emoticons/icon_smile.gif' width='15' height='15'

Amy, Sole, and Pico

Amy, Sole, and Pico

Pura Vida

Posted by HanaRose 13:41

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Thanks for the update! Was wondering how you were doing. Everything sounds very interesting. I would hate being so close to the beach and not going very often but I understand the passages are not so easy. I guess that's what makes it beautiful still. My beach trip to NC is coming up in a few weeks Yahoo! I had my first Say Yes show today which had 60 kids in it and it went really well! Tomorrow we are going to the Say Yes showcase to do it before 1000s(?!). I think the kids will freak out a bit about that. I gave each one a flower after their show today(opening "night" and all) and they loved that.
Love, Mom

by andrea

I was watching your photos and I was reading your interesting adventures for the 10th time and I'm very proud but also happy to see that big smile on your face!
I'm sure that u are having a great time expecially becouse you are inyour habitat ;)
Love, Fabio

by Fabio

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