I arrived in San José very early on Saturday and was welcomed into my new home with one of the most beautiful sunrises I have ever seen.
Originally, because my flight was so early I was going to have to wait at the airport for three hours before ISA was scheduled to pick up the first group of students but because there were so many of us on the same flight they sent a bus to pick us up earlier. When we pulled up to the university all of the host families were waiting for their students and my Mama Tica pulled up to the school soon after I got off the bus.
Thankfully, I was able to understand much of what she was saying in Spanish, mostly because she is very experienced with international students and speaks very slowly! We went straight to the house and ate breakfast quickly before getting back into the car and going to a Saturday market to buy fresh fruit and vegetables for the week. There were so many stalls of food and everything was delicious! I tried the watermelon and had fresh coconut milk. They cut the top off of the coconut right there with a huge knife and then stick a straw in it for you to drink straight out of the shell!
After shopping, we went back to the house and I was able to unpack and take a nap before going to pick up my two Tica sisters who arrived later in the afternoon. It is nice to have two other students living with me but the house rule is that as soon as we start classes we are not allowed to speak English in the house anymore! This will be very good for helping us learn as much Spanish as possible, and I already feel like I am getting better.
This morning we had orientation and a short bus tour of the city which I can’t wait to explore more of. At the top of my list is to go to the Mercado Calle Nacional de Artesania y Pintura, a market just for artists, and to see a fútbol game! So far my experience in Costa Rica has been fantastic, and I am very excited to share more as time goes on!