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The True National Religion

by Matt Casseday

One day last week, I had to pay visits to three different government offices. I spent a lot of the day seated, waiting and waiting for my number to be called. Each office was similar: A casher seated behind a plexiglas window; an armed guard seemingly ill-prepared should he – God help us all —  ever have to actually use his gun; a number of sober-faced Ticos behind desks; and a much larger number of patient citizens awaiting their numbers to be called. I had forgotten to bring something I had recently purchased to avoid long waits: My own roll of numbers just like the ones you pull off from the dispenser in order to receive attention. Mine were the real thing, courtesy of the ´´Take-A-Tab´´ company. The trick is to wait until they call a ´dead´ number, that is, a number no one responds to. Then quickly and surreptitiously leaf through your Take-A-Tabs until you get the number you need. Much time can be saved employing this method; all you need is your own personal roll of numbers, but I had forgotten mine.

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What goes “CHRIT-CHRIT-CHRIT”, Licks its Eyeballs, & Gives You a Stinky Piece of Tail Whenever You Try to Kill it?

By Jack Ewing

Most people don’t like bugs. The term brings up negative images of all sorts of undesirable things, both living and not. If there’s a bug in your computer program, some obscure little quirk is making your life miserable. “Don’t bug me!” means don’t annoy me. A bug can be a germ, vermin, flaw, wiretap, defect, fault, or problem. It can mean to pester or bother. My thesaurus lists only one synonym with a positive connotation, the word enthusiast. In Spanish, the word for bug, “bicho”, is often used to mean a very undesirable person.
Hacienda Baru
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Rio Naranjo Biological Corridor Project Enters New Phase

By Marina Ocampo

After nine years of work and almost 30,000 trees planted, the Naranjo River Biological Corridor project is coming to a new phase. This oldest project of the Titi Conservation Alliance is currently going through the process of formal acceptance in the system of biological corridors of Costa Rica and the Mezo-American Biological Corridor.

The main objective of the project is to create biological connectivity between the two most important wild areas of the Aguirre county – Manuel Antonio National Park and Cerro Nara Protected Area. This connectivity will allow movement of the wildlife, and especially isolated troups of Titi Monkeys. When small groups of animals are isolated, they are forced to interbreed and the small genetic pool leads to poor health and eventual extinction. It is particularly tragic when the species are rare or endemic (do not exist anywhere else in the world) such as titi monkeys (subspecies Saimiri Oerstedii Citrinellis).

Titi Conservation Alliance

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Orange Bread

by Bruce Zabov

I originally began baking this bread as a holiday gift for the neighbors at Christmas until I sampled it for myself, and thought “This is really good!!” The other good thing in addition to its appealing flavor is you don’t need to wait for holidays to make it. You can treat yourself to it any time you like.

With its eggs, butter and milk, it freezes beautifully. Just slice it, and place in a large plastic freezer bag with a small sheet of waxed paper or food wrap between the slices. Freeze and pull out as many slices as you like and place in the toaster or microwave it for 30-45 seconds before you enjoy it. It’s good with or without butter or jam.  Its golden color with bits of orange peel in gives it lots of visual appeal, too.

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Constant Boshoff

By Carol Vlassoff

Constant BoshoffConstant Boshoff  – chiropractor, conservationist, coffee farmer and owner of Rafiki – was born in German East Africa, Tanganika.  His ancestors moved to South Africa when he was a child because of “political storms over Africa”, as he puts it.  Boshoff ‘s father was a big game hunting outfitter. Equipped with luxury tents and a portable kitchen, his father and his party would pitch their camp under the trees at night.  He watched his business grow into a very popular tourist destination for high end clients. This is the background that shaped Constant Boshoff’s own trajectory in life.

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Potty Time – March 2010

By Lucianopotty-time-mar-10


Crazy from the Heat – Review

By Jim Parisi

Crazy from the HeatWriting humor is a cruel, nasty and thankless endeavor more times than not. Trust me because I have tried. Telling a humorous story in person to a group of people is completely different because the speaker can control the pace, the cadence, the intonation and eventually, the punch line. Writing these same words onto a page, handing it to a complete stranger, walking away and allowing the writing to convey humor on its own takes a leap of faith and a unique storytelling talent for the humorist to succeed. And Matt Casseday has pulled it off.

Sr. Casseday is a fifty-something ex-pat who has been calling Costa Rica home for more than two decades. He has been living in the Quepos area for about half that time and writing columns for Quepolandia, the local monthly magazine there, for more than five years. He recently culled through his collection of articles, selecting fifty-four of them to compile into a publication of his own, titled Crazy From the Heat. I think the operative word in that title is the first one, and I mean that in a good way. Matt takes a wry look at the trials and tribulations of living within another culture, specifically, being a “gringo in Ticolandia”, as he calls it. Sr. Casseday has lived and worked in a few different locales as well as owned a car and a business in Costa Rica, is married with a Costa Rican woman, and in short, has easily garnered enough material for his book with first-hand experience.

Jaime Peligro Books and Music

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Fishing Report – March 2010

By Jerry Glover

Welcome and bienvenidos to Quepos and Manuel Antonio. Fishing continues to be very good in our area. A few Marlin, and Sailfish are being released daily with 10 to 15 Sailfish being raised and boats reporting landing 6 to 12 Sails on full day charters. Mahi Mahi are still being boated, some in the 40 lb range. Rooster fish action is good, with several fish being released on our half day charters. Several have been in the 35# to 40# range. Fishing in Quepos is always good year round. Don’t delay! For your fishing adventure contact Luna Tours Sportfishing, our office is located in the Hotel Best Western Kamuk lobby, downtown Quepos central. We own and operate 4 Sport Fishing boats (27 ft to 33 ft) and can also arrange other boats for charter up to 46 ft for half day or full day charters. Contact us at 2777-0725 (office), 8869-4808 (24 hour cell), visit our web site at ww.lunatours.net, or stop by the office for a fishing report, and talk some fishing.

Fishing Report


Cosmic Confetti’s Horoscopes – March 2010

These Horoscopes are meant to be fun and enjoyed. They should not be taken too seriously.

piscesPISCES – February 19-March 20

You will discover a secret about the Spice Girls-most of them can’t tell Cumin from Coriander. In fact some of them are vague about whether Black and Red Pepper come from different plants. You will quite sensibly decide to avoid going to their place for dinner. How did you get that invite by the way? YOUR people are obviously bigger than MY people!

CELEBRITY PISCES: Jack the Ripper

LUCKY SONG: “My Ding a Ling” (who sang that?)


ariesARIES – March 21-April 19

You will rest peacefully on the second week of this month and sink into a strange dream. In the dream you will be playing an odd version of soccer with huge clear balloons, and people will be cheering you on from the sidelines, who are dressed in white formal attire. Don’t go into the light, ok? The extra point isn’t worth it.

CELEBRITY ARIES: Tiny Tim

LUCKY SONG: “Lick it Up” (KISS)

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Quepos Weather


¿Qué Pasa en Quepos? – March 2010

Bienvenidos/Welcome to sunny Costa Rica! We are into the heart of our summer with little or no rain and lots of SOL – so don’t forget the sunblock especially at the beach..and while you’re there you can always cool off with a tasty ice cream at GNAM Gelateria & other Italian goodies….or go up, up and away with Costa Rica Parasailing… a great way to see how we look from the air! If by chance you’re still a little stressed from pre-vacation mode or you need to cool down after Beach Body Bootcamp with Pamela –  wander on down the beach to relax with ”Masaje Mistico” Katreena for Reiki & a massage from Pauline- their located in front of Hotel Arboleda…we also welcome Katreena as a new writer to Quepolandia with her “Life’s a Beach” column…..speaking of new additions to Quepolandia -welcome comic strip creator “Luciano” ..you can also pick up autographed copies of his work at Jaime Peligro’s book store next door to Century 21..as you can tell this has been a plug for our beautiful beach, but don’t forget to take a walk through Quepos to enjoy our drinking establishments (always fun on St. Patrick’s Day!) & great restaurants…we have the best – check out our live music listings in the left column – and please tell our advertisers that you saw them in Quepolandia — whatever you do—have fun and enjoy our “Paradise”—hope to see you back here soon…………………..caio……..P


Important Alliance to Help The Environment

By Pia Martin DVM

Costa Rican national authorities along with the United States signed a symbiotic alliance in January to create the Energy Efficient Center (Centro de Energía Eficiente).

This center will promote research, development, and use of cleaner and more efficient energy that will allow this country to reach its objective of becoming carbon neutral by the year 2021. In other words, Costa Rica wants to mitigate the carbon that is created here.

“This is just the beginning. A committee of eight people will have to identify priorities and the best method to operate”, Gloria Villa, of the Energy Department at MINAET said. She is also very enthusiastic as it is an alliance with the University of Costa Rica (UCR), Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) and Refinadora Costarricense de Petróleo (RECOPE).

The building to house the project will be located at the University of Costa Rica and the Dean of the University, Yamileth González, stated that this institution will reinforce research on more efficient energy but above all, it will teach the community what is learned.

“This center will also train professionals on efficient energy and clean technologies. Their experiences will help other countries in the region,” said Peter Brennan, in charge of business at the US embassy.

This idea was born last year in Trinidad & Tobago during the Cumbre de las Américas, when US president, Barack Obama, proposed the initiative. Then the regional countries applied with their own projects. “Costa Rica was chosen due to its leadership in environmental issues,” Brennan stated.

The US Department of Energy donated $100,000 as part of a Low Carbon Community Initiative in the Americas, the Presidential House said.

This is great news for Costa Rica, Kids Saving The Rainforest, and the environmental community!

Kids Saving the Rainforest Logo


Soon to be Seen on You Tube?

by Matt Casseday

When last seen, my old friend Dedson was leaving the area in a battered Range Rover, bound for a ‘tour’ of Latin America. This was years back and the ‘tour’ he had planned revolved around the dented left rear hubcap that he swore bore an image of the Virgin Mary when the angle and lighting was right. “People will pay good money to see an apparition of the Virgin Mary on a dented hubcap,” he assured me. “Especially humble God-fearing Latinos always on the lookout for the latest Our Lady of Fatima.”

I had studied the hubcap at length, from all angles and at various hours of the day, straight and sober, unstraight and unsober, but the alleged vision never materialized. There was one occasion when I caught a fleeting glimpse of an image that strikingly resembled Moe of the Three Stooges, but it turned out I was staring at the hubcap of a different Range Rover. I wrote off my friend as another hopeless expat lunatic, brains fried from too many hours in the equatorial sun. My last sighting of Dedson was of him behind the wheel of the Virgin Mary Express, heading north on the highway toward San Jose, plumes of dark diesel smoke streaming from the tailpipe.

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Everybody Loves Toucan Sam the Fruitloop Bird…Or do They?

Maybe We Should Ask Woody Woodpecker
By Jack Ewing

Guiding visitors on ecological tours can be very rewarding. Showing guests their first monkey, sloth or toucan is as gratifying for the guide as it is for the visitor. Birds and animals aren’t usually obvious to the untrained eye, and it is often difficult to explain or point out to people the exact position of wildlife within the dense vegetation of the rainforest. A typical conversation might go something like this: “See him? He’s right over there.” “Right over where?” “Look, just follow that trunk up to where it forks off to the left…” “Wait a minute, which trunk?” “That big one just to the right of the one with the vine.” “Oh yeah, that one. Okay now, I follow that up to the fork, right? Then where?” And so on, and so on. Once the bird or animal has been spotted with the naked eye, the next step is to find it with binoculars. Some visitors are practiced in the use of optical equipment, but many are not, and it is sometimes difficult for them to locate the wildlife. I have noticed that visitors will sometimes say they see something even if they don’t. However, there is never any doubt when the person encounters their first toucan. When the large yellow, black and red bird with the enormous beak comes into their field of vision, the visitor’s reaction can range from a simple, “Oh, my god,” to something resembling a low-level orgasm. Nowadays all of our guides have telescopes which they can quickly focus on the wildlife, eliminating all that foreplay and getting right down to the nitty-gritty.

Hacienda Baru

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Watering

By Donna Porter

Summertime is upon us in the tropics and that means hotter temperatures and weeks and/or months void of the cooling, refreshing, life-giving rains.  To any gardener, be they home-gardener or professional, this can only mean one thing – water, water, water. Visitors who have spent time in Costa Rica in our rainy season, may find it hard to believe that watering is a necessity here, but the natural cycle of the rainforest does include a dry period for flower and seed formation of the natural vegetation. This is why the native vegetation/indigenous plants can withstand these dry times, moreso, than the imported, exotic species.

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