Two Days Until I am Home

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(This beginning part I wrote last Friday but I’m leaving it as is) Next Thursday I will be back in the United States and my teaching experience in Costa Rica will be over. My last day of teaching is on Saturday, and on Sunday I will meet my family (Mom, Dad & Sisters) who are arriving today in La Fortuna.

I arrived in CR on October 30th in Montezuma and started my TEFL (Teach English as a Foreign Language) program on the 2nd of November.  I stayed in Montezuma until December 18th and then went home for two weeks to enjoy the Holiday. I returned to CR on the 6th of January in Heredia and it’s where I have been since. If you have been following my blog, you have been following my journeys and experiences along the way from teaching to traveling.  If I hadn’t of gotten the job at Intercultura and met the people I did, my experience would have been a lot different, and not for the better.

On the first and second days of orientation I mentioned to some of the current teachers that I was looking for a place to live. Two girls, Amber and Niamh (pronounced Neeve), who I did not know at the time said they had an extra room and that I could live with them if I wanted.  They didn’t know me, yet they took a chance and offered to let me live with them. I’m grateful they let me live with them because my experience has been amazing. It’s part of the reason why living in CR has been so great, besides the fact Amber brought home the worst dog to ever live. Amber and Niamh are two if the friendliest and kind-hearted people that I have ever met, and they have amazing cooking and baking skills. They fed me on more than one occasion. I will miss them both, but know I will see them again in the future.

When one travels, they meet people from all different points in their life. They are from different backgrounds and ages, but despite the differences it’s relatively easy to make friends. Although I was the youngest teacher at Intercultura I wasn’t  treated differently than anyone else. (However, I was frequently called baby joe.) People gave me the same respect as they gave everyone else. This made it easy to make friends. Over the last six months I have become close with all of the teachers. I traveled with some, drank with all, and had many fun nights out. I’ll miss them all and hope to see them in the future. They were the first people I met in a country where I knew not a soul, and this makes them the most memorable. Most of us were in the same position not knowing anyone. It’s amazing how close people can become without knowing a thing about each other, and how easily we can adapt to each other’s company.
Lastly, I will miss the people and the country of Costa Rica. CR is such a beautiful coutry with great diversity in landscapes. Traveling around the country and seeing the different parts has been such an amazing experience. It’s also been an incredible experience seeing the country’s pride as their futbol team advances in the World Cup. It’s been incredibly fun watching the games and experiencing the celebrations.  I’m grateful for this opportunity and humbled by the experience. Traveling and experiencing a different culture makes you grow as a person and makes you look at the world in a different light. I will now always carry a little pura vida with me.
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