Saturday, June 30, 2007



Yesterday we ran into my friend Margarita while we were in town doing some shopping. She told us that she had some guests staying in her cabina, and invited us to a barbeque at her house at 5:00. I asked what I could bring, and she said I could bring anything I wanted. Hmmm... that could be a challenge. I've gotten better over the years at cooking here, but I still find it difficult. The first time we came here, for three weeks in the summer of 2003, I didn't cook the whole time we were here. I look back at that and can hardly believe it. Anyway, I figured that I should bring a dessert to the party, and as the ingredients to my best desserts - apple pie, refrigerator cake or strawberry shortcake - were not available, I would make oatmeal cookies. I've figured out how to light the stove without blowing it up, which helps. When Alex was here two years ago he got a flash burn on his arm and face from lighting the stove incorrectly. I had everything I needed except vanilla, so I substituted bananas, and they came out great.

The kids and I have been walking at least 30 minutes a day to get in shape, and we hadn't had our walk yesterday when it was time to leave for the party. I suggested that we walk to Margarita's house, which is about 10 minutes away, and that would equal a 20 minute walk roundtrip. Kevin said it would be better to stick to our plan, so instead we walked the long way though the coffee farm near our house. This is a perfect 30 minute walk, and it passes right by Margarita's house. We dropped some cookies off at our friends who own the Rosewood Souvenir shop (where I have bought all my wooden bowls over the years) as a thank you to Lycho who gave me lots of basil for my sphagetti sauce the other day.

I've been to Margarita's house a lot, but I didn't realize that she had an outside kitchen in the shed outside her house. I had assumed it was a garage, as it had a locked gate outside it. She was preparing the barbeque there, and had already made potato/apple salad (it was great!) and had the meat marinating. I cut up some sweet red peppers and onions, and started to put the meat on skewers. Margarita mixed up some masa harina to make tortillas on the old black wooden stove, and Kevina and Catie came in to learn how to do it. Kevin had not been eager to come to the party, but he had a really good time. Margarita asked him to keep the stove going, so he had to find some wood and keep the fire stoked. There were about 6 other kids at the party, and they had a lot of fun running around in the yard in the dark and climbing the guava trees looking for guavas.

The guests staying in the cabina were from Los Angeles, and were originally from Poland. They are in Monteverde for a week, and are studying at CPI, our local Spanish language school.

I met a friend of Margarita's, Xinia, who is buying a lot right up near our farm. She was interested to hear that the kids and I walk every day so she is planning to join us on Monday afternoon for a longer walk to La Cruz. That usually takes us about an hour and fifteen minutes to complete.

We walked home in the dark with Xinia and her daughters under a full moon. It was a great night.

While you were walking home under the full moon, I was lying on Managaha Beach under the same full moon.
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