Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Saving Mother Earth, Wal-Mart style

Today I was at the Mas X Menos (which translates as "More for Less," just in case you were curious!) in Alajuela. MXM is now owned mostly by Wal-Mart (what isn't, though?), and along one half-wall they had this display of drawings by local schoolkids about saving the planet. The cynic in me thought, Well, most of them just did it because they took a "field trip" to MXM and their teacher made them do it, but then the optimist in me thought, Even so, can't hurt, right?

Some of the kids did a really nice job. I think these were the ones that actually "got it," and good for them (and us!). (Note: I didn't take pics of all the outstanding ones, and there were quite a few of them. These are just a sampling.)

"Our Mother Earth
we inherited forests and trails,
What will we leave behind?"

I couldn't make out most of this one (took the pic too small; sorry!), but the center says,
"Because we only have one Earth!"

No words, just beautiful.

"The Earth is not an inheritance from our parents, but a loan that we must return to our children."

Some of the kids obviously either didn't get it or just didn't give a shit. For example, you can file this one under "Unclear on the concept":

Actually, if my son had been given an assignment like "Draw a picture that shows how you feel about our Mother Earth!" I would not be surprised if a dinosaur, robot, or pirate appeared in said picture. Not surprised at all.

You can file this one under "Went right over her head":

I don't get it. Maybe I'll ask my own four-year-old (soon to be five!) what he thinks she was trying to draw.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


My dog, Roxy. She has an extremely long tongue for a small dog! She once won "best mutt" at a dog show in Ciudad Colon. She was so proud of herself! P.S. Those are my feet in the fugly Crocs.

One-legged duck at the U. Peace Park out past Ciudad Colon. Esposo named the duck Lego. If it's not a birth defect, the foot probably came off from fishing wire, which is left all over the park. I don't know why they let people fish here, but they do, and then the fishermen often don't bother to pick up after themselves. Not a surprise, though, really. Unfortunately.

Behind this truck in Escazu. I couldn't believe this thing didn't fall right over. But it never did!

How... inappropriate!

A couple of friends and I took our kids over to Gymbo Fiestas in Santa Ana this morning for some play time. They tend to get restless this time of year (rainy season). Anyhoo. I was reminded of how the sexualization of children (especially girls, but boys are not immune) begins at the very beginning in Costa Rica (and probably most of Latin America, though I haven't lived anywhere else to make that judgement) -- girls get their ears pierced, so, like, it's obvious they are girls, boys just do not have long hair (mine does, and even though he's 100% boy, dresses like a boy, acts like a boy, he still gets called "ella" all the time by strangers; oddly, though, esposo, who also has long hair, is never mistaken for a woman), the toy aisles are very obviously laid out to show which are boy toys and which are girl toys. It's pretty gross, really, if you ask me.

So they play music in Gymbo, and this morning it was some very, very strange remakes of songs such as "YMCA" and "La Bomba" (the reggaeton song, not "La Bamba" by Ritchie Valens!) sung by kids. Weird, right? I have to say, hearing a chorus of children singing "La Bomba" was just a bit disturbing. Here's a video of the original; what would you think if you had heard kids singing this song? Am I overreacting? I should be used to this by now? Yikes.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Dog missing from Piedras Negras

I received an e-mail from Christine at Pets y Mas magazine about a dog who is thought to have been stolen from Peidras Negras (west of Ciudad Colon). Patricia runs a shelter for animals out in Peidras Negras called El Arca de Noe (and believe me, it really is like Noah's Ark out there!). Any of you who have ever lost a pet know that feeling in the pit of your stomach, not knowing what has happened to your beloved friend. So please, if you see this dog, contact Patricia immediately, and pass on this info!

Querid@s Amig@s,
Hoy más que nunca necesito de su apoyo. Por favor: máxima difusión de la foto adjunta y si pueden pegármela en varios negocios por donde ustedes viven… sería aún más fantástico. Pues, el viernes pasado me robaron a mi amigo Jack, lo he buscado como loca en toda la montaña, he pegado rótulos por todas partes, he hablado con medio mundo, pero nada. El es un perro adulto que conoce bien la zona y sé que no se ha perdido. Siempre sigue el carro cuando me voy y luego regresa a casa y la noche, me viene a topar de camino y regresamos juntos a casa. Este ritual me hace terriblemente falta y siento un dolor tan profundo porque no se si el esta en buenas manos, ojala cayo en buenas manos. Este perrito ha sufrido mucho, lo abandonaron y lo rescate en un estado de desnutrición muy avanzada. Es uno de mis mejores perros y el más fiel Amigo, Dios quiera que me lo devuelvan, con el apoyo de todos ustedes. Gracias, gracias, gracias a todos.
Patricia, El Arca de Noe, tel 8813-5118.