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Kids Saving the Rainforest – November 2019

KSTR LogoBy Karen Moss

Capuchin monkeys crossing a monkey bridgeGreetings from Kids Saving The Rainforest! Our spokes kid, Karma Casey, moved back to the US and we would like to thank her for the wonderful job she did writing the Quepolandia articles. I will be filling her shoes this month and although I’m not a kid, at least not on my driver’s license, I’m excited to share the latest information about KSTR with everyone.

Did you know Kids Saving the Rainforest can respond to pick up injured wildlife? You can reach KSTR by WhatsApp at 88 ANIMAL (8826 1625). Once the call comes in, the staff is notified and gets to work immediately. Our wildlife ambulance personnel respond to retrieve the animal while the clinic staff prepares for the animal’s arrival. If we are unable to respond, we have a trained taxi driver closer to respond who can come pick up the animal. Everyone is communicating with each other so we can provide that animal the fastest and most efficient treatment possible.

Speaking of Wildlife ambulance calls, September was a difficult month for the wildlife in the Villa Lirio area. There were a total of four electrocuted monkeys in less than a week. KSTR received a call about an electrocuted Howler Monkey (Mono Congo) from a neighbor near Canyon Verde. The howler had crawled off and we were unable to locate it. KSTR immediately notified ICE (the power company) who came out to install a wildlife bridge the following day. Another howler was then electrocuted in front of ICE while they were there installing the wildlife bridge the next day. KSTR personnel responded and the howler decided to go up a fence and into the trees as our ambulance personnel was preparing to capture it.

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Tasty Chicken Kabobs

Chef's Corner logoThese tender and juicy kabobs are a party appetizer superstar. The key to this succulent chicken recipe is to use boneless thigh fillets (muslos deshuesados) immersed overnight in a sweet, spicy, and lemongrassy marinade.

For 10-12 kabobs

  • 1 kilo of boneless chicken thighs trimmed and cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 1 plump lemongrass stalk, white part only
  • 10 garlic cloves
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1/3 cup of sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of coriander powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper or to taste
  • 1/2 cup of vegetable oil

Chicken grilled on skewers

  1. Place the chicken pieces in a large ziploc bag and blend the remaining ingredients until a smooth paste is formed.
  2. Pour the paste into the bag and mix around to cover entirely.
  3. Place in refrigerator for several hours or preferably overnight.
  4. Thread the morsels on soaked bamboo skewers and grill over low heat turning kabobs regularly to prevent burning.
  5. I usually finish them on a baking sheet in the oven to keep them warm while I prepare the peanut sauce.

For the sauce

  • 1 cup of creamy peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons of vegetable oil
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 small stalk of lemongrass, white part only, thinly sliced
  • 1 small red chili pepper, seeds removed, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1/3 cup of soy sauce
  • Juice of one lime
  • 1 cup of coconut milk
  1. In a small saucepan fry the garlic, lemongrass, and red pepper in the vegetable oil until fragrant.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a slow boil until a smooth sauce is obtained.
  3. Adjust the flavors to your taste with more sugar, salt, pepper, or coconut milk.
  4. Garnish with some chopped peanuts and red pepper.

Extinction in Costa Rica

Never to be seen again header with a Harpy Eagle

I love Costa Rica and its wildlife, and I sometimes envy the pioneers who lived here in the early 1900s and were able to know and appreciate some of the wildlife that are no longer with us. I am thinking of one mammal and one bird in particular, the Giant Anteater and the Harpy Eagle. Both of these truly magnificent species once lived in Costa Rica. Today the former is almost certainly gone forever, and there still may be a few of the latter in several remote locations in the country. Though it is not yet extinct, I will also mention the Jabiru Stork. Let’s have a closer look.

Giant Anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla)

Giant anteater showing its long tongueThis large mammal is similar in many respects to the anteater many of us know today as the Tamandua (Tamandua mexicana): long curved nose, long curved claws that tuck completely under like a fist and obliges them to walk on their knuckles, and both eat ants and termites. The biggest difference is the size. A large tamandua can weigh up to 5 kilos and is about 60 cm long, and the giant anteater, sometimes called the “ant bear”, weighs eight times as much, and is more than double the length. In Costa Rica they are called Oso Caballo in Spanish, which literally translates to “Bear Horse”, presumably because of its large size and big, round, furry appearance. I had the good fortune to see two giant anteaters on my once-in-a-lifetime trip to the Pantanal in Brazil. Both were at night, and neither would let me get close enough to take a photo. Our guide told us that they eat mostly ants, first digging an opening into the ant hill, inserting the long narrow snout as far as possible, and then inserting the sticky, snake-like tongue, which is as long as a man’s arm, deep into the nest to retrieve the ants. He said that the anteater can flick its tongue in and out at the awesome rate of about twice per second. After a very short time it moves on to another nest. This may be because the soldier ants that guard the nest from intruders quickly come out in force. With their long powerful pinchers they may be able to penetrate the thick hairy hide that protects the animal from ordinary ants.

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How to Choose Your Perfect Bar Stool

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It’s hard to imagine any kitchen these days without some sort of bar stool. Bar stools have become the norm, and for good reason. They allow family and friends to get together around the kitchen for casual dining, pot lucks, or just to chat over a drink and keep the chef company while they cook.

The bar stool as we think of it now, has been a part of society since the early 20th century, and was initially designed to seat more people at a commercial bar in the most economical way. It was an evolution from the traditional stool, which can trace its origins back as far as the Byzantium Varangian guard, and beyond.

wooden bar stoolsFinding the right stools for your kitchen can be challenging because there are so many factors to consider including style, comfort and of course height.

If you are lucky, your home will have a standard height bar or kitchen counter so finding a stool should be more straightforward, but always check before you buy. However, you may find that your home was custom built to the owners preferences rather than to any international building standards.

There are many different styles of bar stools available today, but there are only really three basic designs—a seat as the base with a low back and short arms, a seat as the base with a low back, and the most simple of all being the seat only.

But first, let’s cover a bar stool basic: height. In my years of helping people furnish their homes, I learned there is lots of confusion about this subject, so let’s try to clear that up.
“Bar stool” is a general term that refers to stools that come in two primary heights: counter and bar.

Counter stools, are designed to be paired with a standard-height kitchen counter, which is 36 inches tall. So counter stool seats range in height from 24 to 26” from the floor.

Royal Palm Interiors

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That’s Fishin’- November 2019

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Man and boy holding a doradoWelcome to the November installment of That’s Fishin’ in what has historically been one of the best months of the year for Fishing out of the Marina Pez Vela here in Quepolandia. If you are visiting us from overseas, a warm welcome to the area—you have chosen a great time to go fishing with us!


Expect some excellent Blue Marlin fishing during day trips fishing 20-35 miles Offshore. The Marlin fishing we experienced during November 2018 was better than any other month of the year for Offshore day charters with lots of fish in the 150-250lb range and a few larger fish up to 400lbs. Every year plays out a little differently and I look forward to seeing how November fishes this year.

Man holding a tunaNovember is a transition month where we see the last of the seasonal rains before our dry season commences which lasts until April. After the heaviest of our rains during September and October, the weed/debris lines that form at the current breaks Offshore should be in great condition during early November which is sure to provide some incredible Dorado (Mahi Mahi) fishing. The great thing about this style of fishing is that the bite is very often only 8-12 miles Offshore making these perfect family trips when the Dorado bite is on just a short run from the Marina. Full day charters are required when in search of Marlin, Sailfish and Tuna but when the Dorado bite is on, some great fishing can be possible during half day trips also. Dorado at this time of year typically average in the 15-20lb range with frequent 40lb plus fish and the odd beast up to 60-70lb.

Sailfish will also be possible during Offshore trips and expect Sailfish numbers to improve as we move into December before the bite typically peaks between January and March when Sailfish gather here in large numbers. The end of the year also sees some great opportunities for some big Yellow Fin Tuna. We catch lots of Tuna in the 20-50lb range but 100lb plus fish are common also with the odd Wicked Tuna worthy monster hitting the decks.

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Memoirs of a Masseur – November 2019

Alone is the place to be. Almost an extinct location now it juxtaposes the benefits and value of being present versus real time knowledge. Once, not so long ago, alone was much easier to come by. Simply by leaving our home, taking a drive, or turning off our computers we were free to have the sanctity and knowledge that being alone provides. Tech and social media has bullied “alone” away by bringing the ease of the web, and literally all forms of communication, to the palm of our hand with just a few clicks or swipes. It has infiltrated social abilities, head space, and our very humanity twisting human kind into zombie-like imprisoned souls. Take a good look around the next time you are in public domain and take notice of who is and who isn’t in the precious present. Simply finding an hour or two of freedom in each twenty-four hour day is an almost impossible task for most. When an individual habitually begins and ends their days with a device it is an addiction. The illusion and “fix” being that it is literally necessary to attempt to know what the world is doing or saying. This self-enslavement is insurmountable for the weak minded of this world. The dismal fact is that cell phones are the master and the wisdom of alone time is being drowned out of existence.

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Spanish Sucks – November 2019



Manuel Antonio Spanish School logo

What’s Shaking at Marina Pez Vela – November 2019

What's Shaking headerWhat an amazing September and October we have enjoyed here in the area and what was once an incredibly sleepy time of year has become something of a phenomenon in the area. WHALES WERE EVERYWHERE and this amazing experience has become an integral part of extending the tourism season here in Costa Rica and also creating an opportunity for tens of thousands of Costa Rican families to take advantage of the green season rates and explore this part of the country. As we roll into November, we have some AMAZING activities right on the horizon and it is never too soon to start marking dates, planning and making sure you are part of the action.


Arguably everyone’s favorite Holiday as our “turkey day” knows no religion and is a day of feasting, football, friendship, and family. What’s not to love and the Thanksgiving tradition is quickly gaining more and more popularity here in Costa Rica as locals get invited to share and experience the warmth of this special day with expats and tourists alike. The marina and our restaurants will once again be rolling out the red carpet with both traditional Thanksgiving Day meals and some non-traditional ones as well for people who want to share in the love, but not in the tryptophan induced naps after 5 pounds of turkey and stuffing. After your Turkey Day feast or in the days leading up to and after make sure to stop by Gelataria Amorosi here in the Marina for some Pumpkin Pie Gelato which is too die for…and if they still have their Whiskey Cream, it is worth two scoops!

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Karma Saving the Rainforest

Karma's farewell header

Hello fellow Quepolandia readers! It’s Karma Casey, the Kids Saving the Rainforest spokeskid! If you haven’t heard of KSTR, it’s a wonderful wildlife rescue and sanctuary non-profit right here in Quepos! They also plant trees and put up wildlife bridges in the area. For the last two years, I have been writing an article each month for Quepolandia, telling you all about KSTR and how to help the planet! This month’s article is a little bit different than the rest. This is my farewell article, so you won’t be reading my byline at the top of the page anymore!

KarmaWell, let’s start from the beginning of my story. I was an eight year old girl who loved animals and wanted to help them, but I was too young to really help them where I lived. I was just reading and researching about the majestic sloth (one of my favorite animals) when I saw the story about Jeannine and Aislin, the two nine year old girls who originally started Kids Saving the Rainforest.

The girls lived in Manuel Antonio, and they could see that the rainforest was beginning to be destroyed. They began by painting rocks and selling other arts and crafts. With the money they raised, they would buy trees to plant. Kids Saving the Rainforest grew and grew, eventually getting permission from the Costa Rican government to open a wildlife sanctuary and veterinary clinic. It has been open for about twenty years now. Wow! That’s a long time!

I was so inspired by this story, that I decided to reach out to the amazing Jennifer Rice, the president of Kids Saving the Rainforest. I told her how it was my dream to come and help all the animals there.

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¿Qué Pasa en Quepos? – November 2019

November 2019 coverBienvenidos…Welcome to the Rain Forest—can’t say the name did not warn you. It will probably rain a little while you are here, but don’t let that stop your adventure. Thanks to the rain Manuel Antonio National Park is in full bloom attracting frogs, hummingbirds, and butterflies of every color. We would like to thank Paul Gerace for this month’s cover. It is also baby season here in the jungle so look closely as a lot of monkeys and sloths are carrying their young on their backs. Whale season has been fantastic this year so get to Marina Pez Vela (Sunset Tours) and book a tour to get out there and experience these incredible animals up close. The Marina is also kicking off the fishing season with the 2nd Annual Dorado Derby Tournament on November 16th. This tournament is open to all so get your team ready to compete for top prize and enjoy great sport fishing and all the festivities. Don’t have a team?…No worries contact ifishquepos.com and they will team you up. These rains provide great white water rafting on our rivers so contact Toucanes Tours for an unforgettable adventure. Another great option to take advantage of the rain is hopping on an ATV (ATV Monkey Ride Tours) and checking out some private waterfalls.

Our many fine restaurants are serving up your favorite culinary delights. It is a good idea to call ahead this time of year because some restaurants close for a quick vacation before high season. We would like to wish everyone a wonderful and relaxing Thanksgiving. Looking for a traditional Turkey Dinner with all the fixings make your reservations now for La Colina’s Annual Turkey Feast. Missing your NFL, get to Jolly Roger for all the action and GREAT wings.

Toys for Tots will have their collection boxes around the area. So let’s “Be Nice” and help the children by dropping an unwrapped gift to help brighten someone’s holiday. Santa Clause can always use our support.

We would like to welcome our newest staff writer Karen Moss with Kids Saving the Rainforest. We look forward to your column. We also would like to thank Karma Casey for her contribution to saving the rainforest and being a spectacular spokesperson. Good luck to you and your family. We would also like to thank and welcome our newest advertisers, Adis Arquitectura, Coffee Stop, and Get It Here Jerry.

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 at Facebook/Quepolandia. We appreciate and welcome your comments.

Peace and Enjoy…D

Break Through Your Limiting Beliefs

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Are your limiting beliefs holding you back from reaching your full potential?⁣ We work with clients in our program from all different backgrounds.⁣

  • Some who have been working out for years and others who have never stepped foot into a gym.⁣
  • Some who have been counting every calorie and others who don’t know how to count calories at all.⁣
  • Some who want to lose 20 pounds and others who don’t need to lose weight at all.
  • Some who currently have their dream job and others who aren’t even sure what their goals are.
  • Some who have the means to invest in themselves but didn’t think they were deserving and others (most of them, really) were on a tight budget and “not in a place” to be spending more money or investing in themselves. ⁣

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Let’s Talk about the SnowCap Hummingbird

Snowcap HummingbirdBy Paul Gerace

The Snowcap is a very unique looking hummingbird. The male and female are very different in appearance.

The male has a dark body and a deep purple and bronze iridescence to its feathers. The female is more white with some metallic green and bronze.

But it’s only the male that has that definitive white crown.

Their range is from southern Honduras down through Costa Rica and central Panama.

I photographed this one at Rancho Naturalista Lodge in the Turrialba region which is about 4 hours northeast of Quepos.

They were worth the trip to see.

Another of the amazingly beautiful birds that are found here in Costa Rica. See more bird photos HERE

What’s Shaking at Marina Pez Vela – September/October 2019

What's Shaking headerAHHH…September and October…the DOUBLE EDITION of the Quepolandia. This wonderful time of year where we typically have the rainiest of weather, the slowest of tourism numbers, and the best kept secret in all of Costa Rica. What is that secret you ask? Come close so I can whisper it to you…Thats it…A bit closer…“THESE ARE TWO OF THE MOST BEAUTIFUL, SERENE, COOL, AND ENJOYABLE MONTHS TO SPEND IN THE MANUEL ANTONIO AREA!”  Looking to spend all day tanning, maybe February is for you. Hoping for packed restaurants and bars…Semana Santa will be here soon enough. For anyone reading this article you are either a local (congrats) or one of the lucky visitors who braved the ‘rainy season’ fears and will get to experience this town, the rainforest, and Marina Pez Vela in some of its purest forms. Don’t let the sleepy feel and sometimes rainy weather fool you, there is PLENTY going on and lots to get ready for in the coming months as these tranquil days are the restful periods before our 2019-2020 madness starts again before you can blink an eye.

Whale Watching

What was once a quite natural phenomenon has become a PILLAR of our low season tourism flow and an incredibly important financial push for our community. Whale Watching is at its FULL PEAK during September and October and it is one of the most amazing experiences you can ever witness. These majestic creatures are part of the longest mammal migration cycle on the planet and we get to watch the first steps of it with the mothers and calves in the waters right off our shore. Marina Pez Vela is proud to be promoting and a launch pad for this important experience and in addition to all the promotion we do as a project, we are also proud to be giving courses from Marine Biologists, MINAE, and some of our local residents about sustainable practices and how to understand these species, educate our tourists, and protect these amazing animals. Do NOT miss out on the opportunity to experience these whales up close and you can reach out to our team at ifishquepos.com for more information on a tour, private boat charter, or personalized experience.

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Teen Music

Teen boy listening to headphones

Joan Baez singingWhen I was a teenager, I pretty much liked any music that my parents didn’t like—especially if it was being played by long haired guys dressed in black leather. I mean, that’s just typical for teens to be that way, right? That dynamic has changed some by now, and I know teens who actually like their parents and hang out and listen to music with them. Back in our day not all DJs had to adhere to programming rules or meet quotas of how many Beach Boys songs they played per hour, so sometimes they actually played some interesting music. Of course, in those days payola was still very much part of the computation and it was more or less expected since the greedy studio fat cats were still running things.

Now don’t get me wrong—I liked and still like the Beach Boys, but as music listeners in the 60s and 70s, many of us were angry and looking for musical ways to express that anger, or we were in a kind of clueless pot fog. Or maybe that was just me… The Vietnam war, unjust drug laws, crass commercialism, the lack of support for women’s issues, the double standard for equal pay and opportunities, civil rights for all people…the list was long and is STILL long, but I am encouraged by the fact that many teens are still listening to the same music that used to get our juices going back in the day. Relevant and important music and pretty darn creative.

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That’s Fishin’- September/October 2019

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It was been a truly incredible few months fishing that we have experienced here in Quepos. Sailfish, Marlin, Tuna, Dorado, Wahoo have all been keeping Anglers busy Offshore whilst there have been some big Roosterfish, Snapper, Snook, and more showing up during Inshore Fishing trips.

4 men holding large doradoDORADO DERBY!

Before we know it, the first tournament of the new season will be upon us in the form of the Dorado Derby which takes place on November 16th. The inaugural event in 2018 was a huge success with 47 boats taking place, battling it out to be crowned the Dorado Kings & Queens of Quepos. Boat SUPER FLY from Los Sueños took the top honours with a huge Dorado of 52 lbs but only just, a mere 5 lbs separated the top 5 largest Dorado of the tournament showing that literally anyone stands a chance of winning this one day, heaviest fish tournament. This unique tournament format is designed to give every single competing boat and team a chance of winning the event. Catch the biggest Dorado, take home the Cash Prize! With just a $250 entry fee per team this is the most accessible Sport Fishing tournament on the calendar. There will a Fish Fry, Great Music, and Dock Social after the fishing, see marinapezvelatournaments.com for more details and to register your team. We would love to see you there on November 16th!

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