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Archive for ‘Parrita’

Giving in Parrita


I had an incredible opportunity today to join a good friend in giving back to the community here. His bank sponsors the giving of flip flops to children in neighborhoods where the people could use some help. He came to us with a suitcase full and asked if we’d like to join him. I had been putting clothing to the side for a while now as I’m sure you can imagine how much we can go through with seven children in the house. So we packed our truck with his flip flops and our bags of clothes and headed to a nearby town. It was a really touching experience to see these humble and grateful children happily diving in to find something in their size, and their moms and older sisters excited about clothing I no longer wear. As a middle child who was (and still is) always super thrilled to get hand-me-downs I could easily share their joy. For next time, I’m thinking of the Ropa Americana (secondhand store) with bins of clothing at 20 cents per item, twenty dollars could go a long way. I can’t wait till he comes back so we can do this again.


Día de la Independencia

I was invited by a friend to walk in the Independence Day parade on September 15th. in the town of Parrita.  I was so excited to be a part of such a special event, and especially to be walking with the high school seniors on the eve of my 37th birthday!  I was given a traditional Costa Rican dress to wear and my hair was done by my friends mother.

THAT DRESS!!!  Oh, how I wanted to keep that dress.


angel in parade

angel in the middle




CR parade

CR parade

CR parade



It was really hot.  The asphalt was burning right through my sandals so I danced most of the way just so I could lift my feet off the ground.  Lucky for me we were positioned right behind the band.  ;)  Good times.



The Emergency Clinic.

Parrita clinic

Jason had a fever yesterday along with a very sore throat.  When he woke up this morning his fever was worse and his eyes were very swollen and bloodshot.  We took him to Parrita, a nearby town with a 24 hour clinic.

still waiting

Aside from an outdoor waiting room, it’s the same deal as pretty much any other emergency clinic; you register, wait to see triage, then the doctor.  So, after waiting in the initial line twice (we forgot his passport and had to get a paper from another woman at another window saying our copy was sufficient) we went back to see triage.  He tells them how he feels, gets his blood pressure, temperature and weight checked and we go back outside to wait for the doctor.

Dad and Jason

The doctor checks him out, confirms that it’s a throat infection, and gives us a prescription.  We take that prescription to the receptionist, she stamps it, then we turn around and walk a few steps to the pharmacy window and leave it with them.  Then, back outside we go to wait for the medicine.

under the tree

We wait.

waiting mommy

and wait.

waiting room

and wait.


and wait.

rocks and flowers

I go back in to ask why it’s taking so long and the woman tells me she called us a long time ago.  “Estyler, si?!”  Uhh… what?


Without confusing you too much, the basic rule in Spanish speaking cultures is that a child receives two surnames, the fathers family name and the mothers family name.  So when they read Jason’s passport, they see his middle name and assume it’s his father’s family name.  Then, to add just a touch more confusion, they added an “S”.

I would’ve never in a bazillion years figured out that we were “Esteeeeeeeler.”

mama bird

On the bright side, I was able to spend at least forty minutes admiring this mama bird protecting her nest.

Also, I should mention that this was all free.  There’s a law in Costa Rica where all hospitals and clinics are required to accept any and all patients needing emergency care.  If during that visit you need medication and you happen to be a child, a pregnant women, or elderly, you will get that without cost as well.  How awesome is that?  So this is the second time we’ve brought a child to this clinic and never had to open our wallet.  Both times the children were given a big plastic bag of medicine with enough acetaminophen to last them a few months, plus antibiotics and anti-inflammatory meds.  Generally, I prefer to use natural remedies, but it’s always nice to know that modern medicine is available when you want or need it.  And really, how awesome is that for health care in a “developing” country?!

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