Thursday, January 3, 2013

Thursday, January 3rd 2013

Message of the day:  "Today was good.  Today was fun.  Tomorrow is another one." -Dr. Seuss (in honor of Andrew's favorite writer)

Daily Journal:  Today was sadly the FINAL work day at CASEM. Breakfast of fruit, eggs and toast were served at 7:30 sharp along with the option of my 99th cup of coffee or 50th cup of tea. I gladly chose tea due to an earlier threat of a Latin America "bug" that caused my Wednesday to be cut short. As usual we picked up Patricia and made quick stop to the local hardware which amazingly had quite a bit of merchandise. No Home Depot though! On the way to CASEM, Amy and I learned that the during this time cows are not producing milk so trucks had to deliver the "leche." Hmmmm, I wonder if this has anything to do with that "bug." We finally arrived to our destination to find two familiar dogs, one of which who was known as the group bully. Not only are the dogs present but also was two sprinting tourists heading into CASEM saying, " This place has the best stuff!"

With in an instant of walking through the door, it was if all the members radars went off alerting all mothers of my condition throughout the building. Today might of been my lucky day as the members present were in the double digits. The women of CASEM quickly came to my aid and prepared me a local lemon-herb tea. Being the good mothers they were, I was not allowed to work until the finished the boiling hot tea.

In the meantime, Nery, Patricia and Amy discussed some possible signage for the restaurant which somehow quickly came for fruition. Patricia put her computer skills to the test and carefully designed a template, while Amy and I prepared the recycled materials. Visiting tourists from Alaska and Colorado were relieved to see this project take place as they were not aware CASEM had a restaurant. The signs were soon completed and now was the task of placement. The interior sign was strategically mounted by the good luck, holographic Jesus while the other sign replaced the much older, rotted, paper-like outdoor sign.

With the day flying by our work was concluded for shopping, photos and the community Thank You. Lets just say that Julio might no longer be the king of CASEM, as the members, one in particular (Marina) was anxious for photos. Emotions were high as I could tell the members genuinely appreciated all of the work of the past two weeks from Rodney, Cassandra, Bridgett, Owen, Jody, Bella, Joanna, Cate, Andrew, Nancy, Willie, Jesse, Amy and myself. Amy and I were then picked up by the local transport and headed back to the always welcoming Mar-Inn. As I stepped out of the taxi, it only seemed fitting that the sun was shining and a light mist was falling reminding me of new friends and the simple things in life that can mean so much.  -Ed

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Wednesday, January 2nd 2013

Message of the day:  "The ultimate expression of generosity is not in giving of what you have, but in giving of who you are."  -Johnetta B. Cole

Daily Journal:  This morning started out with a trip to the hardware store to pick up some last minute project supplies.  The goal for today was to repaint the main CASEM COOP sign that sits atop of the building.  They did not have the same orange that we used for the sign by the road but we did find a very nice red color that would be perfect.  Upon our arrival we were again greeted by the morning dog posse that has its regulars but inevitably, a new face seems to arrive at some point in the day.  Ed continued to work on and finally master, to his satisfaction, securing the piece of roofing that has been plaguing the women at CASEM each time the wind blows, which for anyone who has been here, is often.  The two cans of spray paint did a great job in covering the sign and all the women who saw it were excited for Nery's return to see how nice it looked.  Coffee, lunch and then more coffee followed.  Ed took on some organizing of the tools and made sure that future groups could find what they were looking for. We sat in the beautiful sunshine enjoying the last of our remaining days here.  Dinner at the Mar Inn complete with a great conversation with Anthony's dad, Felix, about some family history in Santa Elena. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Tuesday, January 1st 2013
Message(s) of the day: Picked by Andrew (even though he is home) & Ed - sports themed
"Service to others is the rent you pay here for your room on Earth"-Muhammad Ali (Ed)
"For what we get, we can make a living, what we give, however, makes a life." -Arthur Ashe (Ed)

"Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, others make it happen." Michael Jordan (Andrew)

Daily Journal: Today is New Years Day and it started out as any other-breakfast and my 75th cup of coffee for the trip. The wind was strong and there was a slight mist in the air which would quickly dissipate to make room for a clear day at CASEM. Upon arrival to CASEM, the feeling was slightly different as there was only one dog to greet Patricia, Amy and I. Work started shortly thereafter including painting, re-organizing and cleaning. Exterior-wise the building was finally starting to "shape up" to welcome all visting patrons. Being that this was New Years Day, the visiting crowd was considerably less as I suspect Bar Ammmmmigos(as Andrew would say in a bad announcer voice) had something to do with it. Regardless, the work day continued and the doors stayed open-literally because of the famous rain forest wind.

Patricia, Amy and I enjoyed typical Costa Rican food from the CASEM restaurant as Patricia informed us on the some the history of Santa Elena. Amy and I were also introduced to a very nice couple, that had infact made Santa Elena their home since the mid-1970´s. Lunch was soon followed by the re-stocking of some much needed hummingbirds and painting the entry-way roof. Time quickly went by and it was time to conclude another successful day at CASEM. On our way out we were generously treated with empanadas, tea and of course, coffee.  -Ed