Along the Natchez Trace

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Part 3 - the house etc

Hola!  I know I wrote this morning, but I feel like a new Mom trying to get her baby who has it's days and nights turned around on to Mom's schedule.  While I'm definitely a morning person, I've found that here the mornings are just too busy to spend much time in front of my computer.  I'll show y'all the washer that I use...  did 2 loads this morning... and that takes a fair amount of time.... besides, we head to town by 7:30am at the latest... hit the stores while the produce is fresh and lovely.

So...  I hope to write in the P.M. from now on....

After I finished my blog this morning we headed down into the plaza...  fresh fruits and veggies are such a delight...
 Bill & I had a small organic farm where we grew our own veggies for many years. We'd never have been able to grow limes, pineapples, mangos or stuff like that in Ohio, but we sure enjoyed what was available.  We always shop at the local markets when we can.

 What do you think is in these bottles?  Obviously not Pepsi...  they've recycled the bottles for ????  At first I thought maybe goats milk...  but if so, it has already curdled and separated....   We didn't buy any...  so I guess I'll never know....

Our main goal was to get some things we thought we might need in case the tiendas were closed over the holy days...  But whenever we walk into town we always wander around a block or so that we haven't done before.

Today I checked out the church...
I thought I might find a schedule of masses for Easter Sunday...  I didn't, but did ask at one of the panaderias (bakery) and found out that the service is at 9:30 am.  In case you're not familiar with the Catholic Church, the statues and cross are shrouded in purple drapes during holy week.  (looks blue here)

The churchyard has this beautiful fountain....
Water is cascading over the globe-like structure in the center. 

The churchyard is adjacent to the main plaza....  A very pleasant place to stroll through at any time of day.

We wanted to buy a hummingbird feeder, but most Ticos don't treat wild animals (including birds) the way we Americans do.  But we wandered through several stores anyway...  which is always fun.

We did find a HUGE beer display in the big supermarket...
Danny, this one's for you.....

The Washing Machine...
It's about the size of an old fashion clothes hamper....  note the hose on the lower right.  It drains into the shower stall.
 I have 2 pair of jeans and one long sleeve tee shirt in here. (and, yes, I put in too much detergent).  This side has a "sort of" agitator...  you fill up as much water as you want and set the agitator to as many minutes as you want....
 After you think they're clean enough, you transfer them into this basket on the right.  Only 1 pair of jeans fit at a time....  Then that little basket spins like crazy, extracting nearly all the water from the item.
 Here's a pair of jeans and a shirt...  ready to spin
 The lid is on... and the spin begins.  After I do this, I fill up the left side again and use that as the rinse...  then go through the extraction again...  interesting, huh?
No dryer here...  but I really prefer drying clothes outside on a clothesline anyway.  Today I washed 5 towels and 2 pairs of jeans....

I'm glad I did this early because just before lunch it started to rain.  But the towels were dry...  and I have the jeans hanging up inside.  They'll be dry by morning.

My mother had a wringer washer... heck, she also had a washboard (how many of you remember THOSE?)...  so, in a way, I feel kind of like I'm living back in Millfield.

I do have one last picture, but, before that, I wanted to tell you a little more about this house.

You've seen it...  inside and out.  And you know what it cost to rent for a month.  But I haven't told you the whole story...

It comes furnished...  including bed and bath linens.  It comes with dishes, cups, cooking utensils, pots, pans, skillets, comal, and pretty much all the things a person would need to move right in.  I did buy a new skillet...  the teflon one here has seen better days, and, like I've said, I love to cook.

We bought a lot of basic stuff...  condiments, sauces, spices, rice, beans... etc.  There is a full size fridge... with a freezer.  There is a coffee maker, a microwave, a big four burner gas range, an electric toaster-oven, a toaster, a blender...  probably more that I haven't come across yet.  There is cutlery, but I'm used to at least 10 different kinds of knives which I use for various things...  Here there's a huge butcher knife and a small (inefficient) paring knife.  But all the cooking utensils are here...  even a cutting board and at least one potholder.

I kind of miss my knives...  but I can surely make do....

Oh yes... about allergies...

This place has no carpets... the floors are tile...  the walls are painted.  The drapes look to be cotton.  My biggest problem is with cleaning agents and laundry detergent.  It is very difficult to find unscented stuff.  When we travel in our motorhome I always bring my own...  that wasn't an option since we flew here.  I have been rinsing clothes twice (don't use softener) and that seems to allay my allergic reaction to detergents.  We'll see...

I forget to ask about stuff like this ahead of time, so feel fortunate that I got lucky this time.

Well, this is longer than I expected...  but I have to include one more picture...
Look at these ants!!!!!  There was a whole line of them ....  all carrying the same kind of leaf...  all heading for the same place.  I guess when we get to thinking we have too big a load to bear, we should take a look at these guys....  makes a person feel kind of humble....

Now...  Really for sure this time...   That's all for today....


  1. These have been the most interesting posts - I love all the photos. I've never even thought about going to Costa Rica, but you sure make it sound inviting.

    Don't worry about them being too long. I could read more and more.

    Especially love the photos of the "carrier" ants. The load doesn't seem to weigh them down at all. Strong little guys. :)

  2. Great shot of the leaf-cutter ants; we saw a whole slew of them at Cahuita National Park when we visited Limon a few years ago. They were parading down the path with tiny bits of leaves, all trying to head down the same hole to the nest. Our guide told us that they travel to the forest in search of leaves, leaving a scent trail so they can find their way back. Apparently they have sharp jaws that allow them to cut up the leaves. One ant can carry nearly ten times its own weight. Once they bring the bits of leaves to their underground nests, they chew them into a pulp, which they store with ant feces and fungus spores. It's the resulting fungus that they eat. So, I guess you could call them fungus-farmers. If I recall correctly Danilo said they really like the leaves of the Ylang Ylang tree.

  3. Am sure enjoying your very interesting posts. I certainly remember wringer washing machines. Looks like you have everything you need to be comfortable. Looking forward to all your adventures.

  4. Thanks for taking the time to share the photos and the explanations. You've certainly made it enjoyable to follow along on your adventure. So happy for you. Nice shot of the ants. They do make one think, don't they?

  5. Years ago I was a house guest in India. On wash day the entire family wash was done by hand on a wash board which took hours to finish, so before leaving the small village I purchased an automatic washer for them. Much to my surprise the photo you have posted was the same as what I had bought but I am not sure how much of a time savings it was.

  6. We had a wringer washer and a scrub board back on the farm, but that was back in the sixties. Mind you, some times a wringer washer is all you need. I came close to getting my fingers caught in that sucker more than once!
    When we moved from Nova Scotia to Ontario in '67, my Mom never had a wringer washer again. But that was OK. She was quite content with the top loader, that sat right next to the electric clothes dryer! Man, that was something! No more hanging outside. She couldn't anyway where they were, since it was a bit of a swanky place with no place for an outside line.
    I still hang outside when I can.
    I'd wager that the white stuff in the pepsi bottles is buttermilk. But that's only a guess.
    Nice photos. Awesome surroundings. Enjoy your stay.

    1. Hmmm...Coconut milk?
      That's making me hungry. :-)
      Love the ant pics, I admire those ants! Hard workers! I drive by a horse farm and trotting practice track every day on my way to work, and there isn't a day that goes by that I don't admire those horses (and their drivers). Rain, shine, snow, 0 to 100 degree weather... they're out there trotting every morning at 8:00! The ants made me think of them. Whatever our troubles, we just have to keep putting one foot in front of the other.

  7. Thanks for the info on the allergies! I thought they probably wouldn't have scented items in a basic rental like that. It's one of the reasons we started rv'ing, just couldn't stay in hotels anymore. Whenever we visit relatives in Canada I pack my bed "envelope" which protects me from irritating soap residue as well as dust mite leavings, a towel, a pillowcase, and my own box of unscented laundry powder. There are a lot of things I'd leave out of a suitcase to fit those items in!! Sorry I haven't replied in so long, I'm just getting caught up on my blog reading since our wi-fi was so spotty when we were traveling. Your trip looks wonderful!