We had another busy week here at the Costa Rica field station. It started last weekend with our “Tico Family Day,” where we each spent a day with different families in and around Atenas. It was a great opportunity to practice our Spanish, learn more about the Costa Rican culture, but most importantly, to build relationships with generous and heart-warming people. Whether it was some delicious homemade food, a cool souvenir, or even just a simple laugh, we each took something from our families that we hope to share with others.

Last week was midterm week. Amid the stress of studying, we were still able to find time for Zumba class, guitar playing, and of course, intense soccer games. On Friday night we welcomed all of our host families (135 Ticos) to join us for a celebratory dinner at the local community center in our neighborhood of La Presa. It was our job to help greet the families, serve the food, clean the plates, and even provide top-notch entertainment. We organized a talent show which consisted of throwing snaps, beautiful harmonizing, and an intense lip-synch battle. The night ended with dancing—a sign that laughing, smiling, and sweating transcend language and cultural barriers.

We had our first Saturday off this weekend, so most of us took advantage by exploring different parts of Costa Rica. For many of us, this involved heading to the Pacific paradise of Manual Antonio. We relaxed by the beach, explored the national park, ate dinner in an airplane, and even saw some howler monkeys. It was a relaxing break from the busy SFS schedule.

On Wednesday we leave for a week in Nicaragua, so we’re excited to see what the next adventure holds!

Host family sisters