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Costa Rica
Thursday, September 16, 2021

Ojalá: A Costa Rican sense of luck for the new year

On the whole, Ticos could benefit from attributing less to chance and more to human behavior. But I hope we never lose awareness of the myriad things outside our power.

From Curri to China: Irene Aguilar talks traveling and studying performing arts in a foreign land

Irene Aguilar, 29, has been living in China for the past five years and says she’s still not ready to come back to Costa Rica.

Of snow, kindness and Northern Lights: a Costa Rican in Manitoba, Canada

Learning from people from so many different backgrounds, from their knowledge and ignorance, is more valuable than any degree; it opens your mind to a different world.

No love scenes allowed: P.D.A. across borders

Few aspects of life are as fraught with contradictions in Latin America as sexuality. Our culture is simultaneously filled with sensual stimulus and religious censure. We spin in a whirlwind of seduction and shame, of pleasure and guilt.

Roommates: a strange concept for Ticos, but are we missing out?

Like many Costa Ricans, I’m a bit of a clean freak. This extends from the constant showering and brushing of teeth to the curious sleep disorder I experience when I know that there are dirty dishes on the sink. I was concerned that this might pose a challenge in having a roommate. I was concerned that others might not understand my strong and healthy relationship with Lysol.

The measure of an expat: how many ‘varas’ in a mile?

Our rental-car GPS started speaking in that cryptic language from the outskirts of reason: the U.S. system of measurement. In this week's "Please Send Coffee!" column, Raquel Chanto explores the confusing process of adjusting to her adopted country's non-metric quirks.

Patriotism abroad: loving one culture while embracing another

I feel abysmally distant from that 7-year-old baton twirler who sang about Juan Santamaría’s “vengeful torch” lighting up a roaring fire and “flying for the homeland, smiling, towards death.”

Food in Costa Rica, then and now: from Guayabitas to cage-free eggs

I belong to the last generation of Ticos who grew up under the import substitution model and the first to experience the opening up of the economy. As a consequence, some of my childhood memories seem uncharacteristically old: They in fact belong to a different time period in Costa Rican history.

Going out on ‘un date’ – the cultural quirks of romance

While it should be obvious by now that I am not an expert on dating, in any language, I have nonetheless learned a thing or two about romantic idiosyncrasies. Even with some level of convergence, dating in Costa Rica and the United States is a game with slightly different rules.

Ojalá: A Costa Rican sense of luck

On the whole, Ticos could benefit from attributing less to chance and more to human behavior. But I hope we never lose awareness of the myriad things outside our power.
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