The Way Things Look For Me . . .

It’s Friday again, and I am brimming over with gratitude these days. “T.G.I.F.!”  It’s more than half a year that I have been living here in Puerto Viejo and I am starting to settle in … in terms of how I feel.  I have had those moments when I ask myself … “Did you come here for that or this?”  It’s my reality check question so I don’t get off course with what I am “taking on”.  It’s an interesting place socially because the “Pura Vida” mantra or expression almost gives everyone the “right” to “be different” and have their own personality.  That I can embrace.  Yet, some folks take advantage of that “premise” and come up with some tall tales!!  One has to be discretionary in regards to what one “hears” and believes.
As you might suspect, there aren’t too many “brothers” out here from a project in a suburb of New York who graduated from an Ivy League University and has quite the diverse background as I have.  In fact, “there’s only one!”  It is not easy for some folks here to “wrap their head around” what I am doing here.  If “they” think about it long enough, they will realize that they do NOT have to be able to understand why I am here and who I am … just let me be!  The atmosphere socially here is interesting due to the blending of Jamaican descent culture, local “natives” from the tribes in the hills of Puerto Viejo … plus the “Ticos” who are blends or mestizos (mixtures) of Spanish “settlers” and the local tribes who are considered indigenous here in Central America.  You can hear Spanish spoken in the streets and stores, one can hear some heavy “patua” accented Jamaican English … as well as some English … not to mention the many European people from places like Italy who have settled here after the first Chinese settlement of families.  There are some indigenous who speak their “original” languages of the Bri Bri or Turuak.  I am finding it quite a “sociological laboratory”; yet I must remain as “aloof” as possible to maintain my own goals and my focus.
I am figuring out a balance of exercise activities from yoga to getting a massage at least once a month to continuing to meditate and apply the “teachings” of Dr. Joe Dispenza in his book “Becoming Supernatural”.  As I stated previously, it is a process … I can feel things happening inside and I have to determine if it is “healing” discomfort or “hurting” pain.  It’s a fine line.  I walk a lot, I meditate while I walk and sometimes I sit after a nice dose of CBD/thc and meditate at the side of the beach!  The sounds of the waves washing up on the shore is certainly therapeutic for me.  I am still waiting for the FBI Search to come from Clarksburg, VA but I am planning a trip to Migracion (Immigration Office) in Limon early next month to update them on a message on the FBI Identity Search website stating that the search can take anywhere from 15 to 16 weeks … aka 4 months … to be sent out.  I am not sure what deadline I have with the application but I want to go and present everything I have and inform them of my time frame for the FBI Search.
Costa Rica is on strike!  It has been on strike for about two months as workers in the private sector protest the “luxury” retirement packages and pay as well as other benefits for government workers!  A few weeks ago in Limon, the main port city of Talamanca, there were outrageous protests and clashes in the streets up until late into the night.  Fires were set, cars were vandalized as the police attempted to quiet the strikers who were intent upon upsetting the “flow” of necessary goods and services like gasoline so the government workers could feel some “economic pain”.  At one point, I heard … some folks broke a “gas line” in Limon that upset the supply of fuel to a stopping point.  Gas stations were closed and there was little traffic flowing between Puerto Viejo and San Jose, not to mention the other smaller coastal “towns”.  As of now, there is a tax reform in place to be voted upon though it seems fairly “corrupt” and still gives government employees waaaay more benefits than those in the “service/tourist” industries and private sector who, by the way, cannot afford to strike!  The corruption appears to be hard to stop here since it has been going on for such a long time … unchecked!  A special thanks to a new friend, Carmen Alfaro, an English and Spanish teacher, whose family is Costa Rican (Tico) and has had diplomatic status and influence in this area of Costa Rica for a few generations now, for her explanation of what is occurring here today.  As I have a little comfort regarding necessities, I am staying put!
I hope things are looking okay for you … things look okay for me … as I continue to do “the inside work” with meditation, yoga and living in harmony with nature and fellow human beings … in the present moment!  Have a great weekend … a special hug to the folks in Florida …

John I. Cook, Director

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