Seeing Costa Rica: Puerto Jiménez (and all about Tech Week)

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When Peace Corps volunteers arrive in their host country, the first 3 months are spent in pre-service training. Every program and country is different but the training includes Peace Corps and program specific classes, safety, language, and cultural training. Usually, volunteers spend these first months living with a host family to ease the integration process and make moving to site somewhat easier.  The training in general is kind of like taking the dip-the-toe-in-the-water-first approach to swimming but the twist is after you put your toe in you head straight to the deep end all by yourself. No noodle or nothin’.

The most helpful and relevant thing (en mi opinión) that we did during training was Tech Week. Halfway through training we were sent in groups to visit a current serving volunteer and experience the real deal. On the ground. Hands in the dirt. Experiencing the corps to the core.

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Arriving in Site: First Impressions of Fila Naranjo

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As the mountainous regions of Costa Rica change to winter, bringing heavy and light rains in the afternoons, chilly evenings, and a gazillion new insects…

OK I’m going to be real here. I was stuck on this ridiculous introduction for like 10 minutes, staring at the wall, not really knowing how to transition from the Costa Rican climate changes into my own personal life changes (c’mon Tily) when I saw a scorpion on my wall. The thing was big ok? I think I’ve handled the whole insect thing pretty well so far, especially in my new house where the walls and the ceiling don’t even meet but I draw the line at scorpions. I had to go get my host dad to take care of it and my host mom comes in saying “oh Thalia tiene miedo de los escorpiones?” as I’m standing on my bed already far enough away from the situation to not really need to be standing on the bed (you’ve been there). Yes, I’m afraid. Sí, mama, sí.  Continue reading

Technology in Costa Rica (y la muerte de mi computadora)

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In honor of the recent death of my Macbook Air, this post will be about technology in Costa Rica. About a month ago, my computer started getting really hot and restarting itself all the time. Finally, it just wouldn’t turn on so I took it to an Apple store (called iCon here…sketchy, I know) and I found out that there was an issue with the battery and the logic board. The cost to fix the computer was $1,400! So, so long to my beloved Mac.

Back home in the United States, buying a new computer is easy. You just walk into a store or hop on Amazon and it’s in your hands within 48 hours (or less). Because my experiences with shopping have always felt so expeditious, I thought replacing my computer would be a simple task. It wasn’t.

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