Happy 190th Birthday, Costa Rica!

What kind of Tica would I be if I didn’t post on Costa Rican’s 190th Day of Independence? WHEW! Where has the time gone? Last year on Tica Embracing the Globe, I talked about how a Tica transplant celebrates Independence Day in NYC (there’s even a clip of me here spitting some poetry!) This year, I’m answering this question:

IS COSTA RICA GETTING BETTER WITH AGE?

Yes. I think Costa Rica is probably getting better with age because not only are we growing economically due to steadily rising tourism rates, but we are tackling tourism in a way that is the least detrimental the Rich Coast. Unlike most Latin American countries where you know tourism is heavy but you land in their airports, or look at their cities and scratch your head wondering ‘Where is all the money going?’ It’s obvious that most of the tourism revenue stays national. Costa Rica is known as one of the most comprehensive countries in eco-tourism which basically means, whatever type of  conservation or ecological ‘adventure’ you might be looking for, you will most likely find it here.

There are probably environmentalists who would disagree with me. They probably think all the attention Costa Rica is getting is not so great, since tourist traffic is encouraging business owners/investors to make real estate sky-rocket and build more properties, and the foot traffic is affecting environmental homeostatis. My opinion is that as long as Costa Rica continues to strive to be entirely carbon-neutral (which basically means they want to eliminate carbon dioxide gas emissions that come from burning fuels and gases) by the year 2021, and continue with eco-tourism incentives for new developments and businesses they should be alright.

HOW DID I DO? DO I WIN THE ‘MISS TRANSPLANT COSTA RICAN’ TITLE?

Send me my sash and one-way ticket!

Today and probably continuing into the weekend, there will be plenty of celebrating to be done not only in Costa Rica, but for neighboring nations like Nicaragua, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Mexico since they all share this very important date.

Although I’ve never spent Independence Day in Costa Rica, I can still pretend like I’m back home. The sun has set over Upstate, New York and it’s about 54 degrees Fahrenheit outside. I am sitting in my school library streaming live music from Costa Rican’s local radio station online, sorting through pictures of my past trips. In my 26 years of life, I’ve only been to Costa Rica in 2008, 2010 and this year twice (two very critical trips). There’s no doubt I feel closer to mi patria (my homeland) now that I’ve got to experience living there for an extended period of time. And although right now it’s 70 degrees Fahrenheit in San Jose, and I’m about miles and miles away from that reality, I can still put a smile on my face when I go back to my apartment downtown and see my flag hanging from the window…remembering that warm feeling I get everytime I’m blessed enough to get on a plane. There really is no place like home.

Here are some of my favorite memories:

Tarmac Walk
A Very Snotty Looking Tica

A very proud Costa Rican,

She Traces

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