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Lance, Letty & Niven: the Rest of the Story: UPDATED

Lance, Niven, & Letty at Dos Locos

Lance, Niven, & Letty at Dos Locos

Click the PLAY button to listen to Letty, Lance, Niven & Ed.

My name is Ed Hooven. For decades my late wife Maya (who died on Feb. 3rd, 2017) and I were good friends with Lance, Letty and Niven. Our friendship was in part based on our mutual interests in playing and listening to live music.

I write this with tears in my eyes as I am the last survivor of this group (born one month after Letty) and have recently been lost in my memories while listening to the hours of recordings we made in our Toronto music room and on gigs (many with Lance, Letty and Niven) since my wife’s recent death from a second bout with cancer.

But let me go back to the beginning: It all started in 1968 (as I learned from Maya) that a new Canadian named Lance Bennett arrived in Toronto’s Yorkville (the then hip area of the city). They immediately struck up a friendship with Maya hiring Lance to work at her club the “Penny Farthing” coffee house. While the club closed shortly after that Maya took Lance with her to the several other Yorkville venues she worked at in those years. They stayed in touch over the next 15 or so years while Lance traveled intermittently to places like South America and England.

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¿Qué Pasa en Quepos? – April 2017

April 2017 coverBienvenidos/ Welcome to the land of Pura Vida. We are here to help make this an unforgettable vacation. April is a very busy month here with Semana Santa being one of the biggest weeks of the year. So have patience, relax, and enjoy the celebration. April should also bring a little rain to help cool things down a little and provide some incredible sunsets. So get to one of our many restaurants such as El Sol or d’Tapas at the beach. Aqua Azul or El Lagarto on the mountain or Mira Olas at the Best Western in Quepos for spectacular sunset views and delicious cocktails. In Dominical check out the river view from Mono Congo. Bring your camera as we are always looking for great cover shots.

Marina Pez Vela will be in full swing this month hosting the Offshore World Championships with top team teams from around the world competing for the Championship. Thank you Keiber Cruz for the cover. Great shot of last year’s OWC start. Don’t forget Movie Night Under the Stars every Friday night, a great night for the entire family.

Be careful this time of year the rip tides can be strong, remember to swim sideways parallel with the shore & not into the currant, and don’t forget the SUNBLOCK.

We would like to welcome our new additions this month, Aurea Designs, Casa Moderna, Carlos Herreros at Coldwell Banker, and Manu Villas….. So please let our advertisers know we sent you.

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

Peace & Enjoy…D


Creating Your Sanctuary Bedroom

Design Wise

Ideally, the master bedroom should be the sanctuary where you can retreat at the end of the day. A place to relax, enjoy, and encourage a good night’s sleep.

By Shelagh Duncan

It should be able to make you just feel good—it is not important whether it is a large master suite or a small bedroom—you should be able to feel the comfort and serenity in this space. It should be the place to make you feel special, and for you and your partner to nurture and enrich your relationship.

Clean and uncluttered bedroomHere are some simple ways to create this space, and I promise the end result will be well worth the effort.

First Impressions

When it comes to design, first impressions count so decorate, clean and arrange your master bedroom accordingly. Keep the floors and night tables clutter free. Ask yourself what do you see when you first walk into the bedroom? What is the first thing you see when you open your eyes in the morning? For me, I see the big sky and the trees on the mountains in the distance. I love that feeling.

Royal Palm Interiors

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Planting Yourself

memoirs of a massuer headerI spend a lot of time outside. Particularly in my garden around plants and trees. Although I have no formal training I had landscaping jobs as a teen and into my twenty’s; in college my work study job was in the university greenhouse, growing plants for science experiments and observations. I’ve always enjoyed herbs and find the cycle of life very rewarding…even the year when I lost 4 mature coconut trees to a nasty beetle. I was emotional about that for months. Toucans and parrots of all sorts frequent the tallest of trees on my property and wake me most mornings. Once my land was a barren dirt hill that used to be cow pasture, now I am surrounded by five fruit trees, lipstick palms, and plants and flowers of all kinds. Wildlife spottings occur almost daily and I never knew I would become a bird watcher, professional sunrise/sunset observer, and can identify our slight change of seasons with the best of them.

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Volunteers Wilberth Chacón, Daniel Marin Carmona, & Juan Pablo Aguero

TCA logoMarch is the hottest month of the year here in Manuel Antonio, so for this issue we want to introduce you to several very cool people who have worked for the Titi Conservation Alliance almost since its inception 16 years ago. Their dedication and enthusiasm for our conservation projects is truly inspiring!

Wilberth Chacon (l) & Daniel Marin Carmona (r)

Wilberth Chacon (l)
& Daniel Marin Carmona (r)

First is Sr. Wilberth Chacón. He has worked for our habitat reforestation program since 2003, performing tree planting, maintenance and other field tasks for the Naranjo River Biological Corridor. He’s as local as local can get. Born in Quepos county and having spent all his life in the area, Wilberth knows his way around nature as few people do here. Being a curious and hardworking man, Wilberth has taken courses related to Cacao Plantation Management and Exportation of Flowers. Over the years, he has been a key guide and assistant for the various monitoring studies performed by Titi Conservation Alliance and allies, helping with nursery set-up, GPS studies, follow-up of reforestation areas, etc. He´s also an active community leader and member of several different local development associations.

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The Sloth Institute – March 2017

2-toed sloth in a treeBy Sam Trull, Sloth Director and Co-Founder of The Sloth Institute

After living in Costa Rica and working for The Sloth Institute for over a year and a half now there is nowhere else I would like to be. Even after living in a tent, braving the weather, the long hours and lack of sleep for this long I do not want to go back home just yet!

I graduated with my zoology degree in 2015 and was thankfully accepted to become a volunteer research technician with The Sloth Institute (TSI). I went into the job without any prior knowledge about sloths, but now I have completely fallen in love with them!! Throughout my time with TSI there have been many highs and lows, that unfortunately just comes hand in hand when working with animals. One of my most recent highs was when we successfully reunited a baby three fingered sloth back with its mother. After a local guide contacted us about the sloth we rushed over to help and after we made sure the baby was in no immediate danger we waited. We moved as far back from the baby as we could and were completely silent. The baby started to cry for its mother and after some time the mother appeared high up and started to move towards her baby. She climbed down the tree until finally she reached her baby and they were reunited. Moments like these are the main reasons why I am still out here in Costa Rica!!
The Sloth Institute logo

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Pad Thai

Chef's Corner logo

This dish has become soooo popular worldwide, and here’s why; because of that deliciously decadent balancing act between comfort and blandness from the rice noodles, with the zest and pop of lime juice, hot peppers, sweet brown sugar, crunchy peanuts… Optimal when served immediately! 8 servings.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of vegetable oil
  • 1 package, 14 oz (396 gm) of Pad Thai noodles, soaked in water for 30 minutes & drained
  • 1 bundle of green onions or scallions, chopped
  • Pad Thai

  • 1/3 cup of chopped garlic
  • 1/3 cup of blanched bean sprouts (optional)
  • 1/3 cup of freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2/3 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of fish sauce or Nam Pla (available locally)
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped hot peppers or to taste
  • 1/2 cup of chopped unsalted peanuts
  • 1/4 cup of freshly torn and chopped cilantro leaves
  • 1 kilo of shrimp*
    *Shrimp can be replaced with chicken, pork, mushrooms, other veggies of your preference, or any combination thereof.

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Spanish Sucks – March 2017

Spanish Sucks by Os¡Happy New 70 Verbs!
¡Happy New Flashcards!
Parte III

¡Hola amigos! How did you feel filling the first seven verbs?

AMAR,   AYUDAR,   APRENDER,   ABRIR,   BEBER,   CAMINAR,   CERRAR.

And how did you do with the last seven?

COCINAR,   COMENZAR,   COMER,   CONDUCIR,   CONOCER,   COMPRAR,   DAR.

Good luck with the following seven!

GANAR,   GUSTAR,   HACER,   DECIR,   LEER,   HABLAR,   JUGAR.

Remember that I chose those 70 verbs based on the frequency of use, the importance of complexity and the pattern of conjugation… Every month I will give you seven flashcards to fill! Go to my website and compare your fillings with mine! oscostarica.com/printable-spanish-flashcards/.
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A Really Nasty Character

Greater grison

By Jack Ewing

Nature & Natural History logoThe book Mammals of Costa Rica by Mark Wainwright describes 21 different species of carnivores found in the country, two from the dog family (canids), six from the raccoon family (procyonids), six from the cat family (felids), and seven from the weasel family (mustelids). This last family boasts some of the toughest and most ferocious animals on the planet, pound for pound. In Costa Rica they are represented by the long-tailed weasel, neotropical river otter, spotted skunk, stripped hog-nosed skunk, hooded skunk, tayra, and the greater grison. This last, the greater grison (Galactis vittata), is distinguished by its ferocity and ability to kill prey considerably larger than itself. I certainly wouldn’t want to tangle with one.

Greater grisons are found in the central and southern pacific regions of Costa Rica but are relatively unknown even by people who live in areas where they are found. I did an informal poll of employees at Hacienda Barú National Wildlife Refuge and found that most of the guides and park rangers had heard of the grison, but only four had ever seen one. None of the receptionists or restaurant personnel had ever heard of them. Over the last 45 years I have been privileged to see five greater grisons.

Hacienda Baru

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Kids Saving the Rainforest – March 2017

KSTR logoHello again, it’s me Lexi, KSTR’s spokeskid.

Owl trapped in barbed wire fenceNow as much as I’d like to turn that sentence into an Adele pun, I was wondering if after all these years I could learn to be a bit more mature. I am about to become a teenager, after all. Anyways, I’m here! I bet you all missed me. I have some great news to share! I got to eat hashbrowns for breakfast. Oh, also, my family saved an owl. What’s that? You’re more interested in the owl? Well, I mean, they were very good hashbrowns, but anything for my fans I guess.

A few weeks ago, my mom spotted an owl. She saw it was flapping its wings, but it didn’t seem to be getting anywhere. She quickly figured out that it was trapped in the barbed wire that encircled an area below our house, our private property. She headed down with my father, and my sister not too far behind, carrying a huge box. (Good job, Peaches!) Unfortunately, I was asleep for all of this, but eventually my father cut the owl out of the barbed wire, being very careful not to touch him. (Remember! Our hands transmit diseases.) They got him into the box, and took him to the KSTR sanctuary! We are happy to say, he’ll be ready for release soon.
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Fiddlin’ Around – March 2017

Fiddlin'AroundYep, folks, these are some mighty strange times we are living in. It is not a very brave new world. It’s a world where alternative facts can be used to ‘prove’ any argument, and where long term planning and prevention and learning from our mistakes is not on the agenda. It’s like a bunch of 5 year olds disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing. “uh uh, no it’s not” “yes it is” “no it’s not” “yes it is”… After a couple of minutes and a couple of black eyes the original argument has been forgotten by the kids—but not the meanness.

Beethoven

Beethoven

So it is with some trepidation that I throw my hat into the political fact ring. But the facts I want to talk about here are about music and the role music plays in every society on this planet. America is not the only country who has to grapple with putting a price tag on art and music, but I am worried that everyone will lose if we do not support and help the creative types do what they do. Long after we have forgotten stupid tweets and egotistical rants and watching some loser getting their 15 minutes of fame, the music of long-dead guys like Beethoven will hopefully still be being played by a youth orchestra somewhere in Kentucky. Or Beirut or Stockholm or Singapore. Or at the music school in San Isidro where I teach. Beethoven will still be giving joy and meaning and beauty to the world long after we’re gone, and the skills and cooperation necessary to play and spread his music will still be relevant and welcome. But as with anything valuable, we must protect and insure that his notes are still out there to be shared.

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What’s Shaking at Marina Pez Vela? – March 2017

Billfishing is incredibly hot, the Tuna bite is on, tournaments are in full swing and the plaza is at maximum occupancy and full of special events, offers and new tenants! Marina Pez Vela is definitely the place to be and we are so proud to see the evolution of an environment which is bringing together our local community and their families, tourists visiting this region, anglers from around the globe and more and more national visitors from San Jose. Ultimately the public space, services and environment here is becoming part of the lore and culture of Quepos and Manuel Antonio and there is a lot more to come and enjoy!

QUEPOS BILLFISH CUP WRAP-UP

Marina Pez Vela welcomed some of the top anglers from Costa Rica and the USA to compete in the 6th annual Quepos Billfish Cup. The competition and prize money in this event is growing each year and the 2017 event saw some incredible anglers and a hot bite in the rich waters off the coast from Marina Pez Vela. After a tight heat after the first day of fishing, two teams began to separate themselves from the pack during Day 2 and never looked back. The Fish Tank and Billfish, battled to an epic finish with the team from Billfish clinching victory with an incredible final day which included 15 sails AND 3 marlins to bring home first place. The final day’s frantic fishing pace was followed up with an amazing closing ceremony and awards event. Our home team the BILLFISH took home first place and a big check!

Final Standings

1st place: Team Billfish
2nd place: Team Fish Tank
3rd place: Team WyBulu

Individual awards

Top Angler: Matt Rabenstine of Billfish
Top Female Angler: Laura Jessen of Fish Tank
Junior Angler: Sebastian Holman of Show Time

The tournament is more than just fun for the participating anglers but also for the community at large and we encourage everyone to share in the upcoming Marina Pez Vela Open and Offshore World Championships, both scheduled for April of 2017!

NEW MARINA TENANTS:

We have two new openings to announce here at the project and with their opening we have the entire commercial plaza running at maximum occupancy! This month is the grand opening of our newest retail store Bambamboo! This unique shop offers custom and hand-painted clothing with a focus on organic materials such as bamboo, hemp and organic paints and dyes. The line is super unique, comfortable and environmentally friendly so stop by for a present for that someone special or something for yourself!

The Double Hook Sports bar is now also officially open for business on the top floor above Mercato del Porto. DoubleHook and its team offer more than just a stunning setting with magical sunsets each night. They have a great menu for those looking for a casual meal or some delicious bar food to help with those cold beers and drink specials. They have over a dozen flat screen televisions and live feeds of virtually every sporting event you can imagine so whether you are looking to watch some March Madness, a local soccer game or spring training, Double Hook is the place to be.

FESTIVAL DE AGUA

In March, we will be hosting the month long Festival de Agua, featuring local school groups, folkloric dance presentations, art displays, and concerts with some up and coming bands. Be sure to check out www.marinapezvela.com and the Marina Pez Vela Facebook site for more information on each weekend’s activities. And remember we also have Outdoor Movie Nights every Friday at 7 pm, Free of Charge.

Marina Pez Vela logo

 


¿Qué Pasa en Quepos? – March 2017

Cover March 2017Bienvenidos… Welcome to the tropics. We knew you were coming so we turn up the heat. So take off those layers and forget about those snow shovels and enjoy this Pura Vida weather. Whether you are here to relax at our many wonderful restaurants, explore our National parks, fish, surf our beach, zip line through the sky, raft our cool rivers, or a nice sunset horseback ride. This magazine can be your guide to the best this area has to offer.

Marina Pez Vella will be hosting the month long Festival of Aqua. In addition to a fleet of boats, spectacular restaurants, great air conditioned shopping. It is also home of Gelateria Amorosi so cool down with some of the area’s most delicious ice cream & treats. Tell them we sent you, our advertisers love to hear it. Don’t miss Movie Night under the Stars a wonderful night for the entire family. Congratulations to Matt Rabenstine and Team Billfish for winning the 6th Annual Quepos Billfish Cup.

For all you basketball fans March Madness is upon us. Catch all the action and great food at Sancho’s Restaurant on the mountain and at the all new Double Hook Sports Bar at the Marina. “Lets go Nova repeat”.

Respect to the Howler monkey and to Rodolfo Guzman for the March cover. In addition to the ONLY Ecotram in Costa Rica, Hacienda Barú has just added their newest attraction, The Monkey Challenge…Do you have what it takes?

We want to welcome to our pages Private Chef Kimberly Cubillo & Raw Foods Costa Rica.

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. We appreciate and welcome your comments.

Peace & Enjoy…D


Quelling My Inner Fascist

shambling through paradiseWalking the streets of Quepos on a hot and hectic Friday afternoon, two voices fight for space in my head. One is the voice whose philosophy is simply ‘Live and let live’. It is the voice that brought me here almost twenty years ago, the voice of tolerance and tranquility, a voice best personified by a man lounging in a hammock, eyes slightly glazed after a short smoke and a long drink, beatific smile painting his face as he stares out at a panoramic Costa Rican vista.

The other voice demands attention every time I see someone double parked blocking traffic, or aggressively and arrogantly turning a one way street into a two way street, or most definitely when I see that emaciated little guy wearing the second hand traffic cop vest in the street in front of the bus station and the Super Mas supermarket, blowing his whistle and acting like he is directing traffic, unhindered by the local police. This other voice is not charitable or tolerant or even remotely me, yet it occasionally boils up unexpectedly, like Volcan Turrialba, emitting gas and noxious smoke, and almost but not quite erupting and sending the passersby running for cover.

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Old-School Coconut Creme Pie

Coconut Creme PieA good friend gave me this surprisingly easy recipe and it’s been a hit every time that I make it. Allow for it to sit overnight and top it with the whipped cream right before serving.

For 8 portions.

Ingredients

  • 1 package of 150 gm “cocanas” store-bought coconut cookies coarsely broken up (pounding them in a bag with a mallet is a fun stress-reliever)
  • 3 tablespoons of Dos Pinos salted butter
  • 1 cup and 3 tablespoons of coconut flakes
  • 1 1/2 cups of crema dulce (Dos Pinos or other brand)
  • 1 1/2 cups of milk
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 3/4 cups of white sugar
  • 1/2 cup of wheat flour
  • 1/4 ts salt
  • 1 ts vanilla extract
  • 1 very cold 250 ml box of whipping cream (crema dulce again) + 1/3 cup sugar OR 1 cup of frozen whipped topping—thawed (yes, this option is perfectly acceptable and another reason to love this recipe).

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