Daily life here in Costa Rica, at least for me, is not necessarily all that different or much more exciting than daily life in the U.S. The major difference is since my workload is a lot lighter here, I have a lot more free time.
A typical week may play out like this. Every day, I usually get up between 7:30-8:00 am. Even on weekends when I don’t have plans, my body is used to waking up early and I usually never sleep to my alarm. This may be because the sun is always up my 6:00 am and my internal body clock has just adjusted to this. On Monday, I don’t have class until 1 pm, but I usually don’t get home until 7:30-8:00 pm, which makes Monday my busiest day. I usually spend the first half of the day doing random stuff, unless I have something I need to prepare for a class, such as an exam or presentation. On Tuesday, I have class at 10:00 am until 11:40 am, and I have a break to go back home and eat lunch before I have my other class at 3:00 pm, which usually is a little under two hours.
By Tuesday night, I usually pretty tired (since Monday is always a long day) and I don’t do too much since I have no class on Wednesday. This makes Wednesday a day to relax or get a head start on work for Thursday and Friday. Occasionally, I have gone on day trips. For example, one week I went somewhere with my host mom for the day and last week, I went to San José to visit two museums. The rest of my week is really easy class wise, with only one class Thursday and Friday, with both starting at 10:00 am.
On weekends, I’ve gone on quite a few trips, some sponsored by IFSA and some as a part of a class. Otherwise, I may go a few places with my host parents, do watch, or watch a few things on Netflix.
In order to get around, I usually take the bus. I live in Barva and la Universidad Nacional is in Heredia, so I always need to take the bus to get to and from class. One round trip costs about $0.35, and it can take anywhere from 10-30 minutes for the bus to get from Barva to Heredia or vice versa, but it usually takes about 15-20 minutes. Other buses, to San José for example, cost a bit more, but still under $1 one way usually unless it’s a few hour trip. That being said, if you plan out which buses you need to take, it is pretty easy to get around, even if you’re used to having a car like me.
With my host family, breakfast usually consists of eggs a mix of rice and beans called gallo pinto. We usually have freshly-squeezed orange juice as well, and my host parents also drink coffee. We sometimes have cereal or an egg sandwich too. Lunch and dinner are usually pretty similar, and almost always include rice and beans (a staple in Costa Rica). Sometimes my host mom needs to make food that’s a little bit different for me because I’m a vegetarian. We almost always have either some type of fruit juice, usually made of cas, but sometimes mango, pineapple, or watermelon, or iced tea. I usually like everything my host mom makes. I don’t have to do any of my own laundry, which is very different from college in the U.S. If my host mom does not do it, the maid that comes on Mondays and Fridays does.