Celebrations in Costa Rica…Cultures National Day…

This reminded me of the “Tilt-A-Whirl” at Disneyland (in my youth).  Tom remembered it as a “Sit and Spin.”

“Sightings from the Veranda in Costa Rica”

The hummingbird feeder has started leaking terribly, bringing bees and flies. We’ve been washing the tile on the veranda a few times a day. Today, we tossed it but hope to find a new feeder next time we head to town.

On Monday, when we went to town, we were thrilled to see evidence of “Cultures National Day,” which is described as follows from this website:

“Cultures National Day was once “Dia de la Raza,” a day to commemorate the discovery of America by Christopher Columbus and the subsequent spreading of Spanish culture in the Americas. However, since 1994, the holiday’s name has been “Dia de las Culturas” or “Day of the Cultures.” This is to recognize the place of multiple, highly diverse cultures in Costa Rica’s history.

Spanish, other European, African, Amerindian, and Asian cultural influences all contribute to modern Costa Rica. And all of these cultural influences are on full display during Cultures National Day.

We walked down this narrow sidewalk next to the booths from the holiday festivities to avoid fast-moving cars on the street.

But despite the name change, the day still also honors Christopher Columbus. Columbus visited the area twice on his voyages to the New World, and he even named the coast of modern Costa Rica well, “Costa Rica” (Rich Coast).

Car-type Merry-Go-Round for the little tykes.

There will be singing, dancing, eating, and various cultural celebrations throughout Costa Rica for days on end for Cultures National Day. But Limon Province, where Columbus once made landfall, is the center of the celebration.

A carnival is held there during the week leading up to October 12th. You will see colorful costumes, hear marching bands, see teams of dancers dance down the streets, and much more. It is undoubtedly a unique experience you will not soon forget.”

These long corn-type doughy things were being fried in hot oil.  It sure smelled good.

The celebration in Atenas is much smaller than in Limon Province. However, over the weekend, we could hear the sounds of drums and fireworks, which we hear many days each week, holiday or not. The Ticos (citizens of Costa Rica) certainly like to celebrate. Therefore, we often hear music, drums, fireworks, and various explosive sounds that leave a puff of smoke in the low-lying clouds.

Does anyone know what these are? 

Here’s a list of annual holidays in Costa Rica:

Public Holidays in Costa Rica

  • January 1: New Year Day
  • April 11: Juan Santa Maria Day
  • Good Thursday (Holy or Great Thursday, Thursday before Easter)
  • Good Friday (Holy or Great Friday, Friday before Easter)
  • May 1: Workers or Labor Day (May Day)
  • July 25: Guanacaste Day
  • August 2: Virgin of Los Angeles Day
  • August 15: Mother´s Day
  • September 15: Independence Day
  • October 12: Cultures National Day (Columbus Day)
  • December 25: Christmas Day
This vendor was frying pork skewers.
We were disappointed we hadn’t made an effort to attend the festivities on their Independence Day on September 15th. But with my continuing recovery and lack of a rental car, we decided to stay behind. Now, as I continue to improve, we can anticipate me becoming more active in the future. 
A carnival was set up for the kids with a variety of rides.
Today, we’re staying in, hoping to use the pool. Yesterday, the pool guy told us to wait three hours before going in the water due to chemicals he’d used, which wouldn’t be until 1:30 pm. By that time, the clouds had rolled in with thunder at a distance. So we opted to forgo the pool.
Cotton candy for sale at the food kiosk on the street.
In 10 days before we leave for Nicaragua, we plan to use all the frozen food in the freezer in the event of a power outage while we’re away for two nights. We’ll leave a container on a shelf in the freezer filled with frozen water with a coin on top of the ice.
More rides on the ground of the church.
If the penny is on the bottom of the container when we return, we’ll know the power had been out for some time, and we’ll dispose of all of the perishable items in the refrigerator. Tom had heard about this logical method some time ago, and it makes sense to us!
Have a blissful day!

Photo from one year ago today, October 18, 2016:

Handmade fishing boats at the shore, made of plastic tubing in front of our villa in Sumbersari Bali. Click here for more details.