Busy days, lazy nights...Simple life in Costa Rica, using all of our senses...



Rapids in the Rio Grande River.  We'd have stopped for a video or better shot but there was no shoulder at any point on the single lane bridge and other vehicles were waiting to cross.
"Sightings from the Veranda in Costa Rica"
Another fire right before our eyes in the valley.  We have no idea what they're burning.
It's rather stunning to me that each day, especially on the days I'm busy cooking for a few days, I can easily get in 10,000 steps on my FitBit.  When I consider the fact I am sitting for quite some time preparing each day's post and mostly sitting after dinner when we watch our shows, for the remainder of the day I'm moving about this large house like a person on a mission.
Chickens and roosters on the rocks in Roca Verde
Purposely, I create opportunities to walk more often in order to maintain some level of fitness.  Yes, I'd love to be walking on the road each day but as mentioned in a few past posts, the road is outrageously steep and difficult to navigate based on the location of the villa.  It's just not fun for us.
Winding roads as we make our way down the mountain.
We've heard that a few neighbors navigate these roads and we wish them well and commend them for doing so.  But, the few people we've seen walking the hill don't appear to be any more fit than the rest of us.
One lane bridge over the Rio Grande River.
Instead, we stay active when staying in, swimming in the pool on sunny mornings and walking as much as possible when sightseeing.  I'm hoping today would be a pool day.  As I complete today's post at almost 11:00 am the sky is filling with dark ominous looking clouds.
A turtle pair is sitting on a mossy grass ledge in the pond.
Yesterday afternoon Ulysses, our living-on-the-premises gardener, stopped by to tell us that we could hear the sounds of monkeys.  All along, we thought those sounds were dogs howling nearby.  However, when the sounds continued for hours, we often wondered.
Suddenly, as is typical here in the rainy Central Valley, the clouds quickly roll in.
As Ulysses spoke I didn't know the Spanish word for a monkey which is "mono" (mow-no).  I was able to determine he was telling us to listen to certain sounds.  Then, he made the universal gesture for monkeys.  Can you guess what that is?  Yep, it's the "scratching on the sides of one's torso" and making an "O" with one's mouth while breathing in and out, heavily and noisily. 
On occasion, we encounter a horse farm or...a farm with horses.
We laughed and praised Ulysses for being so conveniently adept in his description.  Now our ears are tuned to those sounds, added to the roosters, the mooing cows and bulls, the endless array of birds and the occasional drum beats which are commonly heard in this area as kids practice at the local school.
We stopped at a roadside market but didn't find anything that works for us.  Too much sugar and flour.
As avid amateur photographers, we often get caught up in the visual aspects of our surroundings when there's so much more.  I think in terms of Tom's blind brother Jerome who "reads" our posts daily on his talking computer and how much videos with sound must mean to him.  
Koi pond in Zarcera filled with turtles and fish.
Each day Tom edits the post removing all the photos sending it to Jerome by email.  Tom never misses a day.  It means so much to us that Jerry can travel along with us vicariously enjoying the simple nuances of our day to day activities, whether they're significant or not. 
The reasonably priced items are typical Costa Rica snacks.
When the circumstances are right, taking a video while we talk along with it must mean so much more to Jerry.  I will make a point of doing more videos in the future but here in Atenas, there are fewer opportunities for videos than there will be in upcoming months...Antarctica and then Africa.
Tom is always on the prowl for something sweet for a treat but rarely finds anything that appeals to him.
In our upcoming 30-night back-to-back cruise from Fort Lauderdale to Buenos Aires, embarking in 58 days, we'll be going through the Panama Canal again.  Surprisingly, we're as excited to do this another time as we'd been in the past.
Koi ponds are popular in many parts of the world.
We'll be thrilled to see the newly built additional locks, being built during our first time through on a cruise on January 4, 2013.  At that point, we were less experienced taking photos and videos. This time, we're certainly looking forward to doing so with a bit more ability.
These sleeves of cashews were especially appealing to us.  However, I don't eat cashews since they are higher in carbs and sugar than almonds, walnuts, and pecans.
Ah, the thrills that lie ahead of us, somehow make the quiet times in Atenas Costa Rica all the more meaningful and peaceful.  As we soon enter into our sixth year of world travel, it almost feels as if we're beginning once again by joyfully retracing our steps to a few favorite locations.
Costa Rica's markets always seem to have an abundance of gorgeous local flowers for sale at great prices.
Today, we're making another great meal, Low Carb Cheesy Corned Beef and Cabbage Casserole with enough for two night's dinner with an additional pan to freeze for future meals.  You know the drill, want the recipe? Email me...

May your day stimulate your senses and bring you joy!
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Photo from one year ago today, September 26, 2016:
Grounds near our villa in Lovina Bali where we stayed for four nights during the lengthy process of extending our visas.  It turned out to be a very enjoyable experience after all.  For more details and photos, please click here.

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