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In Memoriam of Monty

By Karma Casey

Monty headerHello fellow Quepolandia readers! Its Karma Casey, the spokes kid from Kids Saving The Rainforest, a wildlife rescue and sanctuary in Quepos, Costa Rica. This month I am dedicating my article to a kind-hearted, sweet-souled, three-toed sloth named Monty. I am very sad to report he passed away after spending nine months in Kids Saving The Rainforest’s wildlife nursery and making a huge place in the hearts of everyone who knew him.

About nine months ago, Monty was seen falling from a tree in Manuel Antonio National Park. The Kids Saving the Rainforest professional wildlife rescue team rushed to save him, and he was brought in to the KSTR veterinary clinic where he was examined by the vet, Dr. Carmen Soto. Dr. Soto was unable to find any visible injuries, and he was held for a few days under observation to ensure he would not start developing any new signs of injury or illness. At the time he fell, Monty was about six to seven months old.

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Sadness, Love, Openness

I woke up and cried this morning. It really wasn’t more than my eyes watering, perhaps a tear or two escaped. When I wake I often take ten minutes to set my intentions for the day, to reflect, to simply enjoy sunrise (my favorite time of day). I open the glass slider door onto my porch, I am fortunate to live among nature, and stretch out while slowly waking to a new day. I sometimes water the garden, sometimes not, I try to let the day unravel itself, for some will be more challenging than others. Then I, like most people, turn my attention to the computer. On this particular day I went straight for YouTube and typed in “motivational speeches.” I sat down on an outdoor rocking chair and listened. That’s when my eyes teared up. The man speaking to me through the computer lectured on the power of dreaming big, of bounty in the universe, and of the power of passion. He told a tale about life and it being, in its truest sense, feeling like a dream when everything is aligned. That is what made me cry. The feeling of gratitude as strong as the sun’s rays soon to come. My witty wife walked by me thirty seconds later with a “no shit Sherlock,” referring to the last statement the voice lectured on. “If you wake up angry you affect the people around you.” I turned to her and explained that I was just crying from the happiness I have for this moment, for today, for the love in our lives. We had a big laugh and an awesome hug and I put the coffee on. I was prepping for a 5 hour massage day and had to get ready to go and spread some more love. It was great and positive morning.


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Let’s talk about the Yellow-Throated Toucan

Yellow throated toucanBy Paul Gerace

I can’t think of another bird that I was more excited to see during my first trip to Costa Rica than the Yellow-Throated Toucan.

It is one of 6 different types of toucan species found throughout Costa Rica and one of two that can be found in our area. The other is the Fiery-Billed Aracari.

The Yellow-Throated Toucan is the largest of the 6 and are they are easy to locate. Often you will hear them first with their high pitched calls. They are not graceful fliers and can be seen moving about the trees hopping from one branch to another.

You will often find them up above eating ripe papayas in papaya trees and the fruity growths in cecropia trees. Besides eating fruits I have seen them raid other bird’s nests and pick out the eggs and even the young chicks! Their long bills help them reach the fruit and they actually function as a thermoregulator. This action helps cool off the toucan’s body temperature as heat dissipates through it’s large bill.

Just another one of the colorful and amazing birds that can be found throughout Quepolandia. See more bird photos HERE


6 Incredibly Easy Ways to Maximize your Kitchen Island

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Uncluttered counterby Shelagh Duncan

The hardworking kitchen island can be a very functional and beautiful centerpiece of a kitchen design. It is one of the most popular features in a modern kitchen. However, in some spaces a built-in island can feel more cumbersome than useful, or becomes cluttered with ‘stuff’ so we lose the benefit of all that extra working space. If you are feeling that you need to rethink your island, to make it more functional and maybe add a feature two – read on. Let’s think about some other options that can be smart space-savers and at the same time, cool design solutions.

Reduce clutter on top of your island

It is oh-so-convenient to use the island surface as a catch-all space, but try to move things off the top and keep it clear of everything that is not beautiful. Says William Morris “Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful”. A simple bowl of fruit or floral arrangement on your island may be all that is needed to make your kitchen look like something out of a magazine. Make sure you have adequate lighting: use a striking pendant light that is low enough and bright enough to illuminate this principal work area. Remove non-essential items and as the island is usually the focal point of the kitchen – play it up!
Royal Palm Interiors

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How and Why You Should Start Meditating

A Healthier You header

yoga on the beach at sunsetMeditation is an approach to training your mind that can bring peace and fulfillment to all aspects of your life. Many people don’t know what they should be thinking about when meditating—a common myth is that meditation is all about stopping your thoughts, when it’s actually about learning to step back and observe them. It can be difficult for beginners to sit for an extended amount of time with an “empty mind,” so here are some tips to starting your own mediation practice and how it can benefit your life.

Tips to Starting Your Own Meditation Practice

  • Start with a guided meditation. Headspace and Insight Timer are both excellent apps with a variety of guided meditations and calming music.
  • Try meditating for 5-10 minutes a day, and then increase the amount of time slowly but consistently. Example: Increase 2 minutes a day or increase 5 minutes a week.
  • Close your eyes. This helps reduce distractions and direct your focus inwards.
  • Find a comfortable seated position where you feel supported and relaxed.
  • Breathe naturally but focus on each inhale and exhale.
  • Set an intention for your meditation, whether it’s simply clearing your mind or using a guided meditation on attracting abundance or finding inner peace.
  • There is no right or wrong time of day to meditate. Don’t worry if you miss your meditation in the morning—just try to fit it in at another time throughout the day, maybe on your lunch break or before bed.
  • Put your phone in another room, or set it on silent if you’re using a meditation app.

Benefits of Mediation

  • Less anxiety and stress: Meditation provides an overall better feeling of well-being and connection to yourself and the world.
  • Better focus: Meditation can help you stay on task longer, switch between tasks less frequently and enjoy your tasks more.
  • Deeper relaxation and sleep: Guided meditations use sound and visualization to create an atmosphere for healthy, restful sleep.

Remember, life is short. We can live it lost in thought, or we can choose to be present as life unfolds around us.


What’s Shaking at Marina Pez Vela – April 2019

What's Shaking header
March Madness may be over, but April is going to include celebrations of all shapes and sizes here at Marina Pez Vela, as we embrace the last month of our peak travel season, dry season under the stars, and get ready to welcome the cooling first rains of May! It seems like every month is action packed here at MPV, but with each passing year, the team at the project, along with our guests and tenants find new ways to reinvent this space and build on the synergy between the community fo Quepos/Manuel Antonio and the marina. April 2019 will be another fun filled time as we forge another stitch in the fabric of our community.

Last month of MOVIE NIGHTS

With the end of the typical dry season we also have our last series of FREE MOVIE NIGHTS here at Marina Pez Vela. It is so common for families, couples, and friends to be looking for something to do on Friday nights and this is a great way to share under the stars, enjoy some of the great food and shopping at MPV, and relax with some great cinema on Costa Rica’s largest outdoor screen

Friday, April 5th: Aquaman
Friday, April 12: Spiderman – Un Nuevo Universo
THURSDAY, April 18th: Marco Ramirez
Friday, April 19: Hombre de Fe

NOTE: We have a special Thursday night movie, a Costa Rican film based on one of the nation’s most iconic pieces of literature, Marco Ramirez during Semana Santa, and Friday, April 19th will be our LAST movie night as on the 26th of April we will be hosting the final leg of the Marina Pez Vela Championship Series of Fishing that weekend.

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Pescadora Billfish Championship

Pescadora logoBy Samantha Mumford
Photos Tony Cadorin pelagicfinder.com

“To tell a woman everything she cannot do, is to tell her what she can.”

Many moons ago, I had an enlightening conversation with Captain Don Dingman who has a TV show on ESPN called “Hook the Future.” He told me a story about a 13-year-old girl who was featured on one of their shows. This young woman explained to Captain Don that one day she wanted to be a boat captain, but she was upset that she couldn’t be one. He asked “Why?”. She answered, “Because my Dad won’t let me fish in a bikini”. This 13-year-old girl assumed that you had to have a million followers on social media and dress scantly in order to be successful in this industry.

Sam Mumford and award winnerOn February 21, 2019, at Marina Pez Vela in Quepos, Costa Rica that stigmata was changed and HISTORY WAS MADE! The Pescadora Billfish Championship crowned the World’s Top Lady Anglers! 81 female anglers aboard 22 boats from 7 different countries released 517 billfish, an average of 23 fish per boat. THE MOST FISH RELEASED IN ANY LADIES TOURNAMENT IN HISTORY!!

19 countries followed the leaderboard as women started racking up their releases and making a run to be Female Angler of the Year. On the morning of Day One, assisted by good luck mimosas, Team Uno Mas took an early lead with 28 sailfish releases, and just managed to hang on as Team Big Oh made an incredible push on Day 2 releasing 31 sailfish! The Cinderella story goes to the ladies of Team Game Plan, three of which had NEVER fished before, releasing 40 billfish for the tournament landing them in 3rd place overall. What an awesome accomplishment! Congratulations to Team Uno Mas, who took home 1st Place Overall with 49 billfish, 2nd place winners Big Oh with 44 billfish, and Game Plan with 40 billfish releases. Each angler on these teams were awarded an awesome custom-made trophy created by local artist, Adrian Valli.

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Tuna Poke Salad with Mango and Avocado

Chef's Corner logoIn this town, we can almost always find the freshest tuna. This colorful salad is so quick and easy; it is a perfect cool lunch dish or a stunning 1st course.

Tuna steakTuna Instructions

Start with a slab of tuna like this in the photo.
Cube about 200 grams or 1/2 pound of the tuna, and toss with 1 tablespoon of sesame oil, 1 tablespoon of honey (or brown sugar), and 1 tablespoon of good quality soy sauce.

Salad ingredients

A bed of salad greens
A handful of ripe and flavorful mango cubes
A handful of ripe avocado cubes
A small amount of thinly sliced scallion greens (too much will overpower)
Finished saladToasted sesame seeds
A small amount of Japanese sweet bbq sauce or eel sauce to drizzle for finish ( can be substituted with a mixture of soy and honey)
Sesame oil to drizzle
Sliced red chili (optional)

Salad Instructions

Build the salad by layering the greens, the tuna cubes, mango cubes, avocado cubes.
Drizzle with Japanese sweet sauce or homemade mixture of soy and honey.
Top with sesame seeds and scallions.

The seasonings can be adjusted to taste where the main flavors are from the soy sauce, the honey or brown sugar, and the sesame oil. 


Freddy Hilbbert

Freddy Hilbbert


¿Qué Pasa en Quepos? – April 2019

April 2019 coverBienvenidos/Welcome to the land of Pura Vida. We are here to help you have an incredible vacation. April is a very busy month here in paradise with Semana Santa being one of the busiest weeks of the year. So have patience, relax, and enjoy the celebration.

April should bring a little rain finally to help cool things down a little and provide some incredible sunsets. So get to one of our many great restaurants such Burû on the beach, Agua Azul or Ronny’s Place on the hill, or Mira Olas or Marina Pez Vela in Quepos for spectacular sunset views and delicious cocktails and food.

In Dominical check out the river views and great beers at Fuego Brewery. Bring your camera we are always looking for great covers. Thanks to Benn Gilmour for this month’s cover.

Marina Pez Vela will be in full swing this April They are holding an Art Exhibition for World Art Day April 13-14. They will be hosting back to back Epic fishing tournaments MPV Open, April 25-27. Followed by the Offshore World Championships, April 29-May 3, with teams from all over the world competing for the World Championship. Don’t forget Movie Night Under the Stars a great night for the entire family and it’s FREE.

The Earth is an incredibly complex and vibrant ecosystem. Where living organisms interact with each other and their environment to create the ideal conditions for Life. Earth Day is April 21. So in the words of Bob Marley, “Let’s get together and feel alright”.

Be careful this time of year the rip tides can be strong and sudden. If caught in one swim parallel to shore till out of it. Not into the current, and don’t forget the SUNBLOCK.

We hope you enjoy our magazine and it helps guide you through this enchanting paradise we call home. You can always follow and share us here or on Facebook/Quepolandia. We appreciate and welcome your comments.

Happy Semana Santa
Peace and Enjoy…D


Nightlife in Manuel Antonio

Nightlife headerBy Sisters that Stray

We are in the midst of high season in Manuel Antonio and as the temperatures rise, so does the nightlife. You can find something fun to do every night of the week in our lively town of Manuel Antonio, whether it be salsa dancing, karaoke, live music, or a wine and painting class.

Group photo in a barBar Jolly Roger has live music almost every night of the week along with other entertainment and events. On Monday nights, they host a Ladies Night with free drinks for the ladies from 8-11pm. Tuesday nights are Karaoke Night which always fills up the bar with a lew. Catch the Classy Pirates, Ixneloa, Somos Latinos, and Benjammin and The Howlers on the weekends for live music. Bar Jolly Roger has a pool tables, giant jenga, and a casino – so there’s something for everyone to get into!

Selina is one of the main hot spots on the weekends if you are looking for reggaeton and hip hop, a dance floor, and a mix of travellers and locals. During the weekdays Selina offers nightly events such as salsa dance lessons on Monday nights, wine and painting night on Tuesdays, karaoke night on Thursdays, and DJs or live music every other night of the week!

Marina Pez Vela is the perfect place to take the kids to see the boats and get dinner, catch the sunset during happy hour, or go out for drinks on the weekend.

Karma is a popular gay club. They have salsa lessons, live DJs on the weekends, and throw fun, themed events.

MoGamBo Bar is another popular LGBT, straight friendly bar and is especially well-known for its amazing view. MoGamBo Bar has Latin dancing on Wednesday nights, karaoke on Thursday nights, and music video request night on Fridays.


Memoirs of a Masseur – March 2019

Every day I ask people when they received their last massage. For me, it is a prerequisite question before I begin my work. I listen attentively and have come to the conclusion that very few people give back to themselves enough. For some reason guilt exists about maintaining our own bodies. There is no need to wait. No need to have a back out of whack, a tight neck, a migraine, today is the day to loosen up and get yourself a massage. Let experienced hands put you into a trance where the mind and body can heal, can change, can grow. Massage is no longer a relaxing luxury. Therapeutic massage is an effective healthcare approach; a combination of art and science that true professionals in the field have spent years combining technical and academic information along with developing subtleties of palpation and technique. My twenty years of massaging defines my life more so than just my job. Working in my chosen field you could say, has massaged me into a man that goes through life caring about the mental, physical, and spiritual direction of other humans.


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Stage It to Sell It

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Getting your home to say “Buy Me!” to prospective buyers.

by Shelagh Duncan

So, you have decided that you are going to sell your home. It could be that you have seen a fabulous property elsewhere, or for any number of other reasons. The bottom line is that you want it to sell, and to sell quickly!

Front of house and gardenThere are some very important things that you will need to think about before getting the realtor in.

You will want the prospective buyers to feel at home there. You want them to be able to imagine themselves living and enjoying what you have. But remember, they are not you. They will have their own tastes and lifestyle so you have to be ruthless at removing as much personal memorabilia as possible. De-personalize the house—it is just a house now, not your home, and your job is to get that house ready to hand over to the next owners.

Firstly you will need to emotionally detach yourself: not easy I know. Now, think of yourself as a stranger visiting your home for the first time—the scratched cabinets and chipped tile that you no longer notice will be seen! If it is easier, ask a trusted friend to be that critical eye and point out the areas that need attention.

There are some tried and true rules for getting a house ready to sell.

Royal Palm Interiors

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Indo-Chinese Chili Chicken

Chef's Corner logoSometimes nicknamed “Chindu” cuisine, it’s the result of Chinese immigrants in India who adapted their recipes to local flavors and produced some of the happiest accidents of Asian-fusion.

This sauce combines sweet soy, garlic, ginger, and spicy peppers. Ask your butcher for “muslos deshuesados,” or boneless chicken thighs. They will remain juicy and delicious throughout the cooking and reheating of this dish. 

Ingredients for about 6 servings

  • 500 grams of boneless chicken thighs
  • oil for frying
Finished dish

Finished dish

For the batter

  • 3 tablespoons of cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons of flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of powdered cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of grated ginger
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon of rice wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons of water

For the sauce

  • 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil
  • 3 green onions (scallions) thinly sliced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper or more to taste
  • 8 to 10 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of shredded ginger
  • 1/2 small red or green bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of ketchup
  • 1/2 cup of good quality soy sauce
  • 4 tablespoons of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of cold water mixed with 2 teaspoons of cornstarch
Chicken in batter before frying

Chicken in batter before frying

Directions

  1. Cut the boneless thighs in 1 inch pieces and prepare batter ingredients.
  2. Coat the chicken as seen in picture.
  3. Fry in batches in a shallow pan with the vegetable oil. Drain on paper towels.
  4. Prepare sauce. Heat oil in a pan and fry the green onion, garlic, bell pepper, ginger, and jalapeno until fragrant.
  5. Add the sriracha ketchup, soy sauce, and sugar.
  6. Add the water/cornstarch mixture and heat until the sauce thickens.
  7. Mix in the fried chicken pieces, garnish with cilantro leaves or sliced green onion tops, serve with rice or noodles.

Let’s talk about the Lineated Woodpecker

Lineated WoodpeckerBy Paul Gerace

The Lineated Woodpecker is a large woodpecker with a very distinctive red crest.

It is found all throughout our area and it’s habitat ranges from Mexico down to South America. You can often hear it pecking away at old trees as it looks for ants and other insects. They also eat fruit and seeds from heliconias.

When I see them the crest reminds me of punk rockers with tall red hair. They can also be recognized by the white stripes running down their faces and sides of their necks. A streaked chin also helps to identify it.

Just another one of the many colorful birds that are found here in Quepolandia. See more bird photos HERE.