Today our Plus3 group had a wonderful introduction to the beautiful city of Heredia. My roommate and I woke up to a delicious breakfast consisting of scrambled eggs, toast, and fresh mangoes and papayas. The weather in the morning was everything I had hoped for, a beautiful mid-80 degree sun-filled start to my day. Along with having the best host mother I could have asked for, I would say our study abroad experience has gotten off to a great start. Everyone seemed to have broad smiles upon arrival at Universidad Latina, excited to explore central Heredia and get to know each other a little bit better.
Traveling through central Heredia was amazing; everything from the musicians playing in the park to the Ticos enjoying the beautiful day from the park’s benches seemed to be so full of life. One particular elderly man even stopped me to ask if I was visiting Costa Rica and having a good time, followed by personal anecdotes of him moving here having previously lived in Miami. For lunch, we bused to a restaurant where I soon demolished a delicious plate of pollo asado with sweet plantain and salad. Finally we wrapped up the day with a survival Spanish lesson full with learning and laughter. I soon returned to my home-stay, both very satisfied by our amazing first day and soaked to my socks by the flash rainstorm which appeared on our walk home.
To say Costa Rica met my expectations would be inaccurate; Costa Rica far exceeded my every expectation. Being excited for tasty foods and meeting new friends always comes second to actually experiencing the foods, and creating connections with the people around you. Thus, for this reason, I must say that Costa Rica has so far exceeded my expectations. I am grateful to have such a wonderful host mother (who does not let bugs in her house) and a great group which I look forward to bonding with over the next two weeks. I can now certainly say that Ticos are among the most helpful and friendly people I have met, as every local I have interacted with, whether I met them in my host family’s neighborhood or at the park in central Heredia, has given me some sort of warm welcome, direction, or advice. Now, I am only more excited for the rest of the trip and the adventures that I will embark on. From helping my roommate butcher Spanish even more than he already is to learning outside of the classroom through company visits and guest speakers, I know this trip will be full of memorable experiences.
P.s. I am going to show OUT at the salsa lessons tomorrow