Student Blogs & Vlogs | College Study Abroad Programs, IFSA-Butler

Adjusting to the Pura Vida

This morning I scrolled through my Instagram news feed and saw pictures of the recent snow storm in New York. I was instantly reminded of what I left behind in the United States. Although I have no regrets about skipping the Winter, it is strange to think that I have another life. I feel like I have been in Costa Rica longer than two weeks. During my first week of orientation in Monteverde, I missed my family more than I ever thought I would. In Monteverde we had early days and it was easy not to miss them but when I had free time I was able to feel how much I actually missed my family. For me, actually talking to someone in my family, even it wasn’t everyday made me feel better. One day I talked to my sister on FaceTime and another day I used Skype to talk to my parents, it eased things for me. I also made a conscious effort not to succumb to my sadness. Although I did not feel happy and excited I encouraged myself to go places with my friends in the program. I didn’t think it would help but it did.

I still miss my family now of course but I feel more excited to be in Costa Rica! It is a beautiful country. Monteverde is a different atmosphere then Heredia, it has a small town feel, where Heredia feels like a city. For that week, we (IFSA-Butler students) took a spanish class and participated in a lot of activities at the Monteverde Institute. Everyday we had to walk to the Institute where a wide array of activities and great food awaited us. We learned to dance a traditional dance called EL Punto Guanacasteco, this was a lot of fun. We dressed in the traditional clothing and put on a performance at the institute for all of our host families in Monteverde. We also had Tico friends who showed us around. With them we went to a waterfall, climbed a tree from the inside, went zip lining, took a tour of a coffee plantation.

After a week in Monteverde we traveled to Heredia and met our host families for the rest of our stays in Costa Rica. Our host families were very excited to meet us and happy to have us. I love my host family. I have two older sisters which I love, since I have always been the oldest in my family, a host mom and a dog.For the most part, the second week of orientation has been registering for classes, making Tico friends in Heredia, eating good food, Visa stuff, and touring Heredia and San Jose. Although these things sound like a lot and like they can be overwhelming, it wasn’t.  IFSA-Butler had everything planned in a calendar, it was easy to know what we would be doing each day and what to bring.

Classes start on Monday, I’m very excited to start! Until next time!




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