Looking Back on the Costa Rica Journey

There are a lot of exciting things we’re already gearing up for this summer at P1t. We have big things like our VSA program and fun things like the Downtown Raleigh Art Walk on first Fridays. We can’t wait for what’s in store for the future, but we thought it was time to look back on one of our journeys to Costa Rica early this spring. To do this, we talked with the people who experienced it firsthand.

Backyard River - Sanjana Rao

Backyard River - Sanjana Rao

To paint a more vivid picture of the journey, a student and Costa Rica visitor named Sanjana told us a little bit about one of the afternoons they had on the trip. “On a Sunday we went to see the river that flows right through Mauricio’s cousin’s backyard. The water was crystal clear and it was extremely beautiful with the jungle right there as well. We also got to walk to his mother’s house through farmland to her beautiful pink painted house with a massive, but really pretty garden. It was a little cloudy that day, so it was a little cooler as well.” Sanjana added that “The hosts that we met were super sweet and accommodating, and very willing to work with us through the Spanish and English we both knew.”

Garden - Sanjana Rao

Garden - Sanjana Rao

We also got in touch with our friend Mauricio, who is one of the community ambassadors that we work with in Costa Rica, to tell us a little more about the experience from a local’s perspective. Mauricio wanted people to know that the setting is incredible, writing “our community is located in the vicinity of the coastal city of Limón ... surrounded by wooded areas with a variety of animals like howling monkeys, iguanas, strange insects, birds, amphibians and more,” but that the main emphasis is on the cultural exchange that occurs when visitors come through. Mauricio told us that they all like to share “all our dances, our food, our peace and joy, so that students see and actually experience how Ticos are and how we live.” He also added that on top of the economic benefits that come with these trips, the people of Mauricio’s community themselves learn something from every group of visitors that comes through. “It teaches us to see life differently; to us you are influential.”

It sounds like it was a successful trip - the guests explored a beautiful country, and some happy connections were made. We can’t wait for more journeys!

Thank you so much Mauricio, Viviano, your family and every other person in this community for sharing your home with us. We loved it!

Tobin Bates