|Juan Ramon showed us a railroad calendar. As Tom went though the pages, month by month, he was excited to find this page with the Great Northern Railway (photo from 1964). In the background is the Mississippi River, the Hennepin Ave Bridge and behind it, the Great Northern Railroad Bridge.|
“Sightings from the Veranda in Costa Rica”
|In this photo, taken yesterday before the big storm, the mountains almost appear as a tidal wave. Freaky.|
Yesterday afternoon, about 30 minutes prior to our plan to walk down the steep road to a neighbor’s home who’d generously offered to take us with her to the restaurant where the rock and roll fiesta was being held from 4:00 to 7:00 pm, a downpour occurred of such magnitude that we decided not to go.
The rain didn’t let up for hours.
|Juan and his family in this old photo.|
Not wanting to inconvenience her by asking her to come get us in the downpour, coupled with our lack of interest in getting soaked and the consideration that many others may have decided to stay home anyway, made staying in an easy decision.
|Juan Ramon photo as he became in charge of managing the historic depot.|
Moments after we notified the kindly neighbor that we wouldn’t be coming, the power went out during a close flash of lightning. This was around 3:00 pm. Unfortunately, shortly before the power outage, I’d been using my laptop to watch a Netflix movie without using the power supply.
|The depot in the early 1900’s.|
Subsequently, my battery was partially drained, leaving me with only a few hours of use remaining should the power not come back on. Again, I reminded myself of the recent hurricanes in the US and the thousands that continue to be without power, including thousands whose homes were uninhabitable due to the devastation from the storms. A short-term outage here in Costa Rica is nothing, comparatively.
|The walls in this area were covered in old railroad photos.|
My phone’s battery was half drained as well. Tom’s laptop was fully charged so if we were stuck in the dark all evening, we could use his laptop to watch a movie as opposed to sitting in the dark. There are only a few candles in the villa. All of our books are on our phones on Kindle apps.
|Train arriving at the station in late 1800’s or early 1900’s.|
I knew my laptop wouldn’t make it through one entire movie so I used our portable hard drive, plugged it into my laptop and downloaded several shows and movies. This way I could transfer them to Tom’s laptop where we could watch them there if need be.
|In 1926, a tragic derailment resulted in the death of 14 passengers and crew.|
At this point, Tom decided to take a nap, a rare occurrence for him. He laid down on the comfy bed and in minutes, was sound asleep. I wandered about the house, looking for something to read.
|Many photos of the 1926 derailments lined the walls of the museum.|
Although some vacation/holiday homes have somewhat of a “library” along with puzzles and games, this particular property had only one paperback book, a military-type thriller in the desk drawer. I picked it up and began reading.
|Axel and wheels of an old cart as shown in above old photo. Not all items in the museum were related to the railroad.|
I hadn’t read a paper book in years. Even in our old lives, years ago I began reading books online, long before it was popular to do so. I loved the technology and simplicity of always having my “book” with me wherever I might be. Now, due to weight and space restrictions, neither of us ever carries a paper book.
|The museum was a hodgepodge of antique items, including these tools and handmade masks.|
The book kept me busy for the half hour Tom dozed. He awoke with a start asking if the power had returned. With not much to do and with it still pouring rain, we walked around the house, staring out in the sheer wonder of how it can rain so much day after day. Thank goodness for the usually sunny mornings.
By 4:30, we decided we may as well make dinner since it’s usually dark by 6:00 pm, hopefully only opening the refrigerator a few times until the power came back on. We busied ourselves in the kitchen. Luckily, I’d already done most of the prep for the meal earlier in the day.
When planning to go out to the music fest we figured it would be best to have a meal ready to cook in the event the food at the restaurant wasn’t suitable for my way of eating.
|Railroad switch locks.|
We had Asian burger patties ready to cook (luckily the range runs on propane gas); a salad made and ready for dressing; vegetables to throw into a pot of water on the stove. Dinner would be easy to prepare without electricity.
As for keeping the refrigerated food cold, Tom had been saving ice in the bottom bin of the freezer in a large plastic bag. He had enough ice to keep the refrigerated products cold overnight, if necessary. If the power didn’t come back on the next day, we could begin eating everything in the freezer. We had a plan.
|Old seats from a passenger train.|
By 5:15 we were seated at the dining room table with our plates of food in front of us, while we watched an episode of Master Chef. If the power didn’t come back on overnight, we had it covered.
Just about the time we’d finished our meal and the show ended, the lights flashed when the power came back on. We looked at each other, smiled and jumped up starting to clear the table. As always, Tom washed the dishes while I busied myself with other cleanup tasks.
|Tom wrote in the guestbook as he often does as we travel the world.|
By the time darkness fell, we made our way to the screening room, selecting a few shows on Netflix to watch until bedtime. Sure, we were disappointed not to go out with our neighbor but we do have other social plans on the horizon.
As for today’s photos, enjoy these museum treasures that Juan Ramon excitedly shared with us as we toured through the dusty old museum on the grounds of the railway depot. He was delightful and we appreciated every moment he spent with us.
Soon, Tom will watch the Minnesota Vikings game on the app on his laptop with the HDMI cord plugged into the huge flat screen TV while I prepare tonight’s meal. It’s a typical Sunday in the life of retirees.
Gee…I just might get back into that paper book!
Photo from one year ago today, September 17, 2016:
|What a lovely family in their colorful holiday clothing as they walk to a local shrine with their offerings. Gede, our house man in Bali, stopped by for a visit with his wife and two daughters. hey have since added a son to their family after we left almost a year ago. For more details please click here.|