Esté fin de semana estaba in San José. ¿Porque no? Friday night I went on a field trip with my dance class to (a? the?) Tobogan - a Salon de Baile. We met at school at 8:30 and with Tico time my teacher Rosi showed up around 9 and piled into her car and a school van and off we went into the night. The Tobogan was a big place with a giant (very slippery) dance floor in the middle surrounded by tables and chairs with a stage at one end for the 11-piece band. The dancers were incredible. What I would do to dance like that. And in heels, for most of the girls. Some of our classmates ducked out about an hour in to go to a "real bar" but about 5 of us stayed and that's when the dancing really picked up. As our class is overwhelmingly girl-heavy, Rosi had invited some of her friends from her other job (at a collection agency.. who knew), and they were very forgiving dancing with us beginners. I also danced with this really nice roundish old man in a fedora who taught me a little Bolero. Saturday I slept in... 'till 7:00. Bummer. Gallo pinto for breakfast with Catalina and we had a nice chat about my search for a summer job. It's nice when I have some spare time to talk more with Catalina - it's great Spanish practice and she's really sweet. I asked her if she knew any of our neighbors and she said no, she's very introverted, but a new girl is going to be moving in to the apartment attached to the house and hopefully we can make friends with her. I met up with Katherine and Meghan to explore the Artisan's Market in San José where we found all sorts of beautiful things. Luckily I didn't buy all of them. Afterwards I got to meet their host family which was really fun because they're loud and funny and outgoing. I had not yet explored Barrio Cordoba, the area to the south of Veritas, so they showed me around their neighborhood and we had a fun time in the bigger Pequeño Mundo, a Wal-mart-esque store that has all sorts of finds if you look hard enough - I found a box of $4 J. Crew tee shirts. Also you can find tents for 6000 Colones: $12.
I think this will be a good way to save money on hotels in el futuro. Saturday night we went into San José to el Teatro Nacional to see A Midsummer Night's Dream - in English, to our surprise. Very fun, funny, and the National Theater is gorgeous. How can you pass up a Shakespeare play for 5,000 Colones? Sunday my body clock let me actually sleep in until 11:00, at which point Catalina made me panqueques - hooray! Around 1:00 I met up with the Barrio Cordoba crowd - Trevor, Andrea, Katherine, and Meghan - to go to the zoo. We saw snakes, huge lions, scarlet macaws, a taper, ocelots, jaguars, squirrels, owls, monkeys, and a whole lot more. I really enjoyed the zoo, even though I wish the lion cage was bigger. Sunday night we had Macaroni y queso por cena, con plantanos maduros - mi comida favorita en Costa Rica. I think they're basically over-ripe plantains fried in butter. FANTASTICO. Catalina knows they're my favorite, so she makes a big deal when we have them. Then I hopped in a cab and met a bunch of ISA kids at Mac's American Bar to watch the superbowl. It was really fun to be in a sports bar with so many other Americans... to bad the Patriots couldn't hang on in the end. Monday was changeover day for Spanish classes so I got the morning off - much needed to work on my architecture project. I'm just about to finish my first project - tropical house in the rain forest for a family of 4, he is a business man and she teaches and likes art. It's so cool learning from Max about the considerations for architecture in Costa Rica. Remember, he told me, the kids need to be learning the importance of nature from a young age so make sure their rooms have a good view. My house includes outdoor showers, lots of porch space, and a butterfly garden. Me encanta Costa Rica. Last night we had a sort of breakthrough with our Tica sister, Catalina. She had finally come back from the beach (somewhere on the Pacific side near Nicaragua) and was getting dressed to go out to a bar for a friend's birthday. We chatted about her vacation and she asked us advice on shoes, shirt, earrings, bag. Normal social interaction! And it's only taken 4 weeks! This week I start my Intermediate 2 Spanish class - I'm a little nervous but excited, I got out of the last one alive.