17 05 2010


I have arrived in Mastatal safely and there is so much happening (without seeming like it) around me it is taking me a long time to really absorb my surroundings. Fruit trees (papaya, mango, cashew…) are absolutely everywhere.  Nearly everything around me is natural…from the bamboo and wattle and daub structures to the recycled glass mosaics to the outdoor showers with a back wall made of steep jungle forest.  The thing that seems to come most naturally, though, is the calm, confident, peaceful nature of the people around me.

The word of the day is “tranquillo”.  The kind woman who sheltered and fed me my first night in Costa Rica used it often to insist that I relax and sit back.  “Should I take off my shoes?” “tranquillo, tranquillo”. And when I offered to sit in the back seat of a car I shared with the drivers friend… “tranquillo, tranquillo” (and then handed me a mango or three as a welcoming present).  It describes the whole atmosphere of this place.  Calm, friendy, and tranquil.  I”m learning little by little to go slower.

I wish I had remembered my “tranquillo” lesson last night, as I spent my first night alone in the forest in what is basically a big (and beautiful) bamboo tree fort.  Simple, I thought.  Set up the mosquito net.  Turn out the light.  Sleep.  Harmless but enormous bugs, a couple of harmless but startling lizzards, and a few harmless but suprisingly swift and directionally confused birds later, and the night began with me curled in a pretty tight ball, shivering and listening to the sounds of birds, cicadas, insects, ocassional bursts of stored water crashing through the trees, and a couple of giant wooping toads cooing back and forth.  I guess fright must be pretty tiring though, because soon I was out like a light, and I even managed to awake unscathed and alive the next morning with the sunrise.  It is probably a good thing I was alone because the amount of “freak out” I managed to demonstrate likely would have been embarassing to those more accustomed to nights here.  I”m ready to brave it again, though, now that I know I will surely see the morning sooner if I just remember to be “tranquilo”.  It”s something I know I am sure to learn with great depth in the next few weeks.  I feel far from home.  But I am surrounded by so many loving homes that the peace I need to learn more about is sure to find me, given some time.

I cannot wait to see what the coming few weeks bring.  For now, I”ll take the days as they come, with what they bring.

Ciao amigos!




7 responses

7 09 2010
Eloise Martin

This post reminds me of a book I read not too long ago- Child of the Jungle written by Sabine Kuegler.
I am sure it must be so nice eating fruits that you can just pick up from trees, and living in small wooden houses.
It must be such a great experiences. I would love to go to a country like Costa Rica and do the things you do. I lived in Mauritius Island and in Tanzania all my life until I was 18years old and there it’s also very wild. We used to grow mango, papaya, and orange trees and would go collect the fruits when they we ready to be eaten.
And I’m sure it must be a little scary sleeping next to bugs and insects even though they are harmless. You are very brave! 🙂

18 05 2010
Lindsay Millar

Hola amiga!!!

yo estoy feliz tu estas bien! yo pienso tu tuviste un buen viaje! yo estoy celosa! you can translate that! glad to hear you arrived safe, i’m excited to hear about your next few days! soon, those sounds of the jungles will be soothing and not frightening at all.

chao amiga!

no olvidas: tranquilo!

besos y abrazos,

19 05 2010

MORE Spanish…NOoooooooooooooooo!
Just jokes. You are right…the jungle noises at night have become soothing already! Im sleeping like a baby. Thanks for the message!
Talk to you soon

18 05 2010

Thanks for the encouragement mom! You”ll know almost more Spanish than me by now, I expect! I start lessons soon, but until then I am becoming more animated than ever in the absence of words…so watch out!

18 05 2010
Daelynn Green

Not many people have a chance to experience an adventure like the one you are on. You have a beautiful way with words. I am excited for you and your experience. tranquilo Morgan.

18 05 2010

Thans Daelynn 🙂

17 05 2010

You may feel far away but I have never felt closer. You say “howler monkeys”, I say “recess supervision”. You say “tranquilo” and so do I because I am driving your car and your spanish lesson cd is on. Remember- we only have mosquitoes here. Your bug cool factor is HUGE. Tweezers in hand and forge ahead. When you close your eyes tight and lie in your ball at night we’re there.

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