I think we both like Sámara – quiet, some tourists but very international, Ticans, no American chains – mellow. We awoke at about 5 AM as the howler monkeys started with their morning chorus of “hooo hooo hooo” – I’m not sure if they’re greeting the day, or establishing dominance, or just telling everyone to get out of their way.
everyone know that they’re coming. We saw a few in the mango tree across the street when we headed out, although I couldn’t get them to talk.
I found a great mosaic mural near the place where we had breakfast, with sea creatures in tile – of course, the one I have planned for school next year will be much nicer, but I enjoyed this mural a lot, especially our friendly sea
Richard spent some time on the beach while I went by the school and watched the Guanecaste Day events – Guanecaste is the northern province (state? canon?) that was Costa Rican, then was claimed by Nicaragua, and then was re-annexed to Costa Rica 187 years ago (on July 25). This is a huge holiday, government offices close, and schools hold events for about a week. So I watched the gathering, and chatted with a few fathers who were proudly watching their children in the activities. Apparently Sámara is one of the larger towns in this area, so 8 or 10 schools gathered here for skits, costume displays, dancing, etc. Each grade level had students dress either as the native people (a lot of burlap decorated with drawings of corn, with beans and corn glued on); or gauchos (the ranchers and cattlemen); or girls as dancers. The little ones were adorable, the middle kids cute, and the older kids were whistling and cat-calling at each other. And of course the boys were all admiring the wooden machete one little gaucho was carrying. Some things are universal. It was very colorful and fun for me. I even got to see the king and queen of maize crowned (apparently a native Central American Indian tradition?). I explained to the two fathers who spoke English that I’m an art teacher, and I had questions about the event, who made the costumes, etc. – so I learned a lot about the system here as well as the history and culture of the holiday. Fun!
Then more time relaxing on the beach, lunch, walking, beach – the tide started coming in, the surf came up and the surfers came out.