July 9, 2010
Know how I know it’s July 9? My computer says so. Otherwise, I’m not sure I’d know the date or the day of the week.
Nothing much happening yesterday so didn’t do a report, but here’s what’s going on:
I wouldn’t call it an earth-shattering experience but yesterday I felt my first earthquake. At 10:30 am, while I’m sitting at my computer, the building shook for a couple of seconds. As soon as I realized what it was, I went outside, but it didn’t last or get worse. With an active volcano less than an hour away, I’m guessing this is typical.
Yesterday morning I looked out my door and there was a Tico squatting down on the lawn outside clipping the grass with hand shears, you know, the kind you might use to trim hedges. He was doing the whole complex that way. To trim hedges here they use a machete. Gas-guzzling power tools like lawn mowers are not used, although the guy did come back with a weed eater later to do some trimming.
One of the unique things down here is the need to go to different places to get stuff that you might find in one store in the U.S. For example, the place where I bought my bike does not sell bicycle accessories, such as a chain and a lock to secure it. I have to go to a hardware store for that. Likewise, stuff you might find in Publix in the U.S. you might have to locate in 2-3 stores here. Yesterday, I did some grocery shopping and shaving cream was on my list. The store did not carry any, so today I will make my first visit to the pharmacy (farmacia), where I also can probably get large bottles of aspirin or Alleve when I need them. not sure if I can grab stuff off the shelves or will need to tell someone what I want, so I will go armed with some translations written down.