If I could describe Costa Rica in one word, it would be “chill.” Of course we spent just one week in just one little town, but it’s pretty obvious that a laid back way of life is one that’s lived by all. The weather was beautiful, the food was delicious, and the people were absolutely incredible. Our group of five knows just a handful of Spanish, collectively, but we tried our hardest to speak the language as much as possible. Every single person we encountered was more than willing to help us, teach us, and stand patiently while we wracked our brains for every word. PLUS everyone loves Americans. You don’t just find that everywhere — or anywhere, for that matter. I had never felt so welcomed in another country before.
We all surfed for the first time, which was SO much fun. An iguana LIVED on our ROOF. We rode bikes around town. We rode golf carts home from the bar. We rode horses on the beach — which was everything from a whale of a time to the most terrifying thing any of us had ever done. We ate way too much casado, drank way too much fresh fruit juices (no, like I took a photo of our hotel’s drink menu), and got a little too much sun. It was all perfect.
“Pura Vida” is Costa Rica’s slogan and we heard it many, many times. It literally translates to “pure life,” but has so many uses — “awesome,” “thank you,” “no problem.” It fits in so well with the country’s culture.
One of the locals we met told us about how he’d been to New York. He loved Montauk (understandably), but didn’t like the city. “New York City no es Pura Vida,” he said. And how right he is. Everyone’s always rushing around, people don’t smile as much as they should, we’re always trying to get somewhere we’re not — and fast. I really do love Manhattan, but I’d love to live a more relaxed life for a while. Life is about living in the moment, not trying to rush through it to get to the next.
Pura Vida, you guys. Costa Rica, I’ll be back.