In Rhythm with Our Surroundings in Costa Rica

Posted: March 23, 2012

Name: Hannah Morrison
School: Boston University
Program: Sustainable Development Studies, Costa Rica

Si, simplificaramos nuestras vidas, sería más facilmente estar feliz,” – Gabriel Calderón

   This week we found ourselves in the sublime agro-forest of the El Toledo Organic Coffee Farm. The natural beauty of agroforestry is reflected here in the quality of the coffee beans, the happy souls of the farmers who grow them, the sequestration of carbon, and the lack of agrochemicals. So as far as the world’s best coffee goes, this must be the place. The Calderon family showed us that organic living nurtures our souls as well as the earth that gives to it. This is their life philosophy and their farm stands by it.

We also helped sort trash with a local recycling initiative that allows the residents of Atenas to drop off their recyclables at the park each month to be properly disposed. As we walked through the sea of trash bags, filled to the brim with recyclables and some non-recyclables (rollerskates…..questionable), community members were working together to improve their waste management.

Emergency sandwiches? Check.

This weekend we camped and explored Santa Rosa National Park in Guanacaste. It was quite the journey as we had a flat tire, a 12k hike to the beach, interactions with baby sea turtles, and exposure to dry forest ecosystems. We became more in rhythm with our surroundings as we embraced the tropical elements while learning about forest fragmentation, resource conservation, and the economic value of environmental services. The vast beauty of the land that stretches from the volcanoes, across the dry forest, and down to the sandy beach and glorious Pacific Ocean, was pura vida.