We are in Costa Rica!!
We arrived on Wednesday, April 28th around noon and our "Big Sister" from the school, Nina, was there to pick us up with our Tica (Costa Rican) Mom. It was definitely a little bit hectic finding them in the crowd as we left the airport, but soon we were in our Tico family's pick-up and headed to their house.
They live right across the street from the school in San Jose, and we are thrilled with the location as it is the rainy season and, like clock-work, around 1 or 2pm it begins to rain and continues for most of the evening. Our family includes three kids (ages 15, 17, and 20), their parents, and the maternal grandmother. We were incredibly hungry when we arrived and we realized immediately that we are in for a treat when it comes to our food! The grandmother, "Mayu", is an amazing chef and we are getting to sample fantastic Costa Rican cuisine at each meal. Most students are not living with a Tico family, but we are extremely happy with our decision. This is one of the fastest ways to jump right into the culture and the language.
During our meal, we heard screaming outside and at first, we thought it was just some kids being let out of school, but it turned out that a bus was on fire right outside our house! Our Tica mom called 911 and the bomberos (firefighters) came quickly and put out the fire. Luckily, everyone had gotten off the bus and no one was hurt. What an introduction to the public transportation system!
After we finished lunch, we got settled in our room and bathroom:
and then we headed to check out the school with our Big Sister. Nina showed us where we would have chapel, take classes, and study. It was great to get an idea of everything before orientation began yesterday.
The orientation has been great and is helping to introduce us to the school and to the Costa Rican culture. We are finding out how vital our time in Colorado was as we put into practice the language-learning techniques that we learned in PILAT. Josh and I are having a great time using the Spanish that we know with our family here and we can't wait to get into classes next week to learn more.
Yesterday after orientation, we went with Nina to Costa Rica's Wal-Mart - what an experience! Most things are more expensive there, but it is nice to know that if there is something from the states that we need, there is a way to get it.
We have warm water for showers, consistent electricity, and pretty reliable internet, but we have been having trouble posting on blogspot since we've been here. We have more pictures that we would like to post, but for some reason it won't allow us to post them right now. If you would like to see them, we are also posting all of our pictures on Facebook on the profile of our group: Support Josh and Stephanie in Ecuador. They are in the photo album "Costa Rica".
Thank you all for all of your prayers and we will keep you updated on our progress in school!!!
Love and God Bless!