So I guess I’m over the tons-of-assignments thing. Some of the students went to talk to the course coordinator about it and she said she’d talk to us after our morning class tomorrow, so we’ll see what happens.
I really like driving through Costa Rica. We're in a huge valley, so we drive through the cities and there are mountains surrounding us. We're visiting a volcano in a few weeks, so we'll get to be up there, but it's just really mountainous and there are a lot of forests and it's gorgeous.
Almost all the houses we drive by are gated up, like this one. Most have barbed wire on the top. Their yards are just completely gated in and it's a little creepy at first, but these are pretty nice houses. It's just customary here, but it definitely looks a little weird.
Anyway, last night was pretty fun. It was a Monday night and we got back too late to really consider renting a bus or taxi to go out, so we started at Alex’s place and then the party moved to our six-person house. The awesome thing was, every person in our program ended up coming over – we’re all doing things as a 30-person group, so that’s pretty cool. We just had our Costa Rican drinks and played a huge game of Kings, which was a little anticlimactic because it took about 5 minutes to get through each card.
The houses are so non-soundproof that we can hear what the guys in the next house, 100 feet away, are saying – so I’m sure the entire campus could hear our party. We’re in married housing, so there are little kids running around a few cabins down, and we’re probably the last people they want around – a bunch of rowdy American semi-alcoholics.
The party started at 8ish and ended around 10:30, but a few stragglers stayed outside our house and talked until maybe midnight. Sure, it seems a little lame that the party ended so early, but we did have to be in the cafeteria by 8:15 this morning, and it gets dark here at about 6 p.m. – so it already feels like midnight by about 8 at night.
We end up doing so much stuff per day that it feels like it’s impossible to write one blog post a day about it. Our first class was today – it was about Foreign Direct Investments in Costa Rica. It was a three hour class, and our professor was super-animated and kept swearing. The topic was only semi-interesting to me…I’m not so much into the economics-based stuff, and the lesson was wayyy long. But we had a coffee break at 10:30 – and I’ve officially decided those are the coolest meals of the day.
It’s really air conditioned in the classrooms, so to go outside by the pool when it’s 90 degrees out in the early morning is awesome. They serve us little finger food and different juice – yesterday it was guava, but today I just had ginger ale - and the finger food is amazing, just like different cookies and wraps. It feels like how I think tea time in England should be.
Anyway, the lesson was all right, considering I have the attention span of a 5 year old. We had lunch and then went to Cafe Britt for a company tour.
The company tour was a little ridiculous. They served us coffee liquor pretty much the second we walked in, and it was the most touristy thing I’ve ever done. They had a tour with professional actors, who showed us how the factory made coffee – we walked through the mini coffee plantation and they walked us through step by step – then we saw in the factory. And then they had this insane show about the history of coffee. I’m not exactly sure what happened, but there were ridiculous costumes, and here’s a picture of one of the actors dressed as the Pope with a naked guy in the background.
Yeah. Pretty much sums up the ridiculousness of the tour.
Then we got to talk with the CEO of the company, and had tamales and free drinks while he talked in this pavilion attached to the factory.
Everything in Costa Rica is half-outside. The whole campus is barely indoors, the hallways are just covered walkways and even the cafeteria is one big pavilion. It’s awesome.
We’ve started to talk to a few more of the Costa Rican students. I really want to practice my Spanish, but they’re all MBA students and they know English, so they just speak English to us. They play soccer a few times per week in a stadium a few minutes away and they invited us to come play during the next three weeks, so we might end up doing that. It’s great talking to them because we know what bars are good and bad what nights – like the bar we’re going to tonight apparently lets ladies drink free on Mondays. Too bad we didn’t know that yesterday.
We’re starting to plan our weekend trip, and we’re going to the Caribbean side of the country. It’s really far south, and it’s a five and a half hour drive, but it’s going to be amazing. More details on that later, I guess.
And we’re about ready to head out to the casino/bar tonight, so I’m pretty pumped about that.