117. More Tats, Mud and Teeth

Thursday 4/27- Yes, tax season is over, but when I agreed to work for the tax prep firm again this year, I also agreed to stay on for extensions after the regular deadline. I got up this morning and started working bright & early just like I always do. After I finished up with whatever extension work they had for me, I planned to work hard on getting some more blog posts written. I am so far behind on writing blogs!! I want to give a huge shout out to Ramie.  While I’ve been keeping rough notes, he’s been writing the bulk of the stories for the blog. For the last couple of months when I’m trying to catch up, a lot of the content is already written and I just have to do a thorough edit. I don’t have any blogs ready and on-deck like I usually did before, and having it written to this point helps immensely! We truly do make a great team and I appreciate so much how much helps me with everything, even though I may not always show it. πŸ’–πŸ’ž

Having this tax & blog work to do today worked out kind of perfectly though, because today Ramie had plans of his own. He had an appointment to finish his back tattoo and to get his newest idea inked.

Hi all ya Costa Breeze followers. Even though I really like my back piece it needed to have something more to make it look complete, I think it looked a little odd with just the wolf/scorpion in the middle of my back. I pretty much let Pip (the artist) run with whatever idea he came up with because I didn't know what to do to get that “finished” look. I showed up at the shop and Pip already had the design pulled up on his computer, asked me look at it and give him the go ahead. All he had to do was size it to fit my back. Once that was done, he carefully placed it and started working. About 1-½ hours later he was finished with it. 

Here is the finished piece
We took a quick break and it was time to start the next tat. I wanted something in honor of my daughter and I decided to get some script done on my forearm. I already had it all picked out and Pip just had to get it into his computer, onto the transfer paper and then pick the right spot on my forearm. This much smaller one only took about a half hour. I love it! I'm not going to tell you what it says but if any of you want to translate it, the language is Aurebesh (Star Wars). 

When I got home I showed Dana my finished back and my forearm and then sent a picture of my forearm to Taylor and told her she was in charge of translating it. She knew right away what the language was and in less than 8 minutes she already got back to me and told me she was crying and that she loved it. For now that is enough ink for me, I’ve taken care of the itch that’s been building for a while, but I think Dana still wants to do another one someday.

Saturday 4/29- After I finished with a couple of hours of work, we took the ATV out for a ride again. We have got a little bit of rain over the last week and Ramie was hoping to take it out mudding! Since the red clay here stains your clothes, we both made sure to wear something that either we didn’t care if it got stained or wouldn’t be noticeable if it got red clay mud on it. Black tank top & shorts for me! As we climbed the mountain it got cooler and cooler, and I realized that I need to remember to dress differently when we go for these ATV rides as it does get significantly cooler as you go up the mountain! At one point it started sprinkling and it did feel quite chilly. Note to self- no more tank tops for long mountain rides!

We did find some hills that were pretty slippery & slimy, but didn’t find much mud to really make a mess (much to Ramie’s disappointment!) Unfortunately I was too late pulling out my camera to get video of the slipperiest hill that really got us sliding around.



 The ATV is a little on the loud side when we’re driving so it makes it difficult to have much of a conversation while we’re riding around, but we did discuss that we need to come up with a name for this ATV since I’m getting tired of writing “the ATV” in all of these blog posts. Unfortunately we haven’t been able to agree on anything that we both like. The current temporary name is Willy (the Wolverine), since it’s a Yamaha Wolverine. I don’t think Willy fits- and there were some other suggestions that were even worse than Willy that made us sound like complete red-necks, and I’m not going for that!

Ramie’s favorite is currently “Ohhhhh Come on Cletus!” πŸ˜–This seriously just makes me want to puke!! We’ll have to keep brainstorming until we find something that sticks.

We took a different route this time than we had any time in the past and found ourselves a little bit lost. We ended up in a little village that we had no idea existed back there.  Fortunately they had cell service in the area and we were able to pull up maps because we did end up going around in a complete circle before realizing we weren’t on the road that we thought we were on. After we got ourselves pointed in the right direction, we made our way toward the coffee plantation (our sure sign that we know where we are and how to get home) but instead of heading home at that point, we went to the big waterfall that is nearby that we hiked with Taryn, Steven & Will last year when they visited. We didn’t hike the waterfall this time, but we did want to see what it looked like up close before the big rains started coming down. It was much slower than last time and the pool at the base was just a puddle compared to last June. Once we had our fill of the waterfall we headed back down the mountain and home for the afternoon. 

Normally this all all full of water but it's just the smallest trickle now
The falls are so small but soon enough it will be raging
We had to stop and get a picture of this fence.. I don't think its working like intended.
Just one of the beautiful views from being this high up a mountain

The Official Casa Costa Breeze end of April rainfall total was 8 inches 

These last couple of weeks it has been abnormally, unseasonably hot here!

Yes, I know, we live in the tropics, that’s what is expected, right? Well, yes and no! In a normal year February & March are the hottest months and then things tend to start “cooling off” (I put that in quotes because it’s all relative. Cooling off here means the high 70s) in preparation for green (rainy) season. This year February & March were actually quite comfortable (compared to the heat we’d normally have), but now in May we are hitting the mid to upper 90s in the afternoon- like the heat that we would have expected a couple of months ago.

The other twist on this is that we’re also starting to get a bit of rain in the evenings. Yes, that’s expected this time of year, but now that we have the abnormal heat plus the rain that also brings up the humidity! It can make it feel a bit on the uncomfortable side, and remember, we only have AC in the bedrooms. Oh, and even with that being said, our crazy selves haven’t even been turning the AC on at night, we’ve just been suffering through it! Yes, we have been spending extra time in the pool because of this heat, but here’s one more thing- currently the pool is 93 degrees too, so instead of feeling cool and refreshing, it feels like warm bathwater. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining!! We have acclimated to the heat and humidity for the most part, it’s just catching us off guard right now to have to deal with both the heat & the humidity at the same time. But- as they say- Pura Vida!! And we’ll survive- it won’t be long and we’ll be heading to the much different climate in MN for 3 weeks. That might be a huge shock to our system considering the winter has been hanging on so long up there!

Monday 5/1-Wednesday 5/10- about 4 years ago Ramie got braces and they were removed just before we moved here to Costa Rica 2 years ago. His teeth are nice and straight now but he has been complaining since getting them removed that a crown that he has had since he was 18 years old has been bothering him. Since his teeth moved with the braces, he now gets food stuck in between the crown and the tooth next to it, sometimes causing his teeth to be very sore. One thing about Costa Rica is that dental and medical care are significantly cheaper than in the US. So much so that a lot of people will fly to Costa Rica just to have surgeries or dental work done. How cheap exactly?!

Back in January Ramie went with Randall to have our car inspected and after they finished the appointment Randal had to stop at his dentist in San Isidro. Since they were already there and Randall gave a good recommendation, Ramie asked the dentist about the possibility of dental work. Right there, after just walking in off the street, the dentist brought Ramie to the chair, took some x-rays, and did a little bit of looking at the issue. He quoted Ramie $250 to replace this bothersome crown. WOW! and he didn't even charge for today's visit or x-rays. Well Ramie never did go and have that work done because of our driving situation and not having a valid license at the time, not to mention it's an hour drive one way and he would have to go twice (once for the temporary and then again for the permanent) and that's 4 hours minimum of driving. Needless to say, Ramie really was not feeling up for all of that driving. We talked about it and although it was more expensive to have it replaced here in Uvita, we decided that for the sake of time, gas, and wear and tear on the truck we would pay more for the convenience of having it done close to home.

Ramie decided today (Monday 5/1) to venture to Ojochal (about a 15 minute drive South of us) to see a dentist that he saw advertise on one of our local Facebook pages. He showed up and the office, they took a look at what he had going on, and gave him a quote of $475. He asked about his retainer, and they said that they would also be able to adjust it for free. There is also a dentist about a quarter mile from our house who had previously given us a quote of $500 but they want to charge for the retainer adjustment. Ramie decided to make the appointment with the dentist in Ojochal and they could already get him in this Wednesday 5/3 with the guarantee that he could get the permanent crown before we went back to the US on 5/18.

His initial appointment went well and when he left they told him to wait for the call that his permanent crown was ready and they would get him in right away to swap the temporary for the permanent one. That call came on the following Monday 5/8 and they made an appointment for Wednesday 5/10. It only took one week from the initial appointment to get the permanent crown installed (I feel like I waited much longer back in MN when I had my crown done). That seems super fast but made Ramie feel good that there would be plenty of time to fix any issues between now and when we head back to MN. Ramie got home and said that he can already tell that the new crown fits and feels better than his old one. Ramie says that he is excited to eat steak to try this new crown out but that is going to have to wait a few days.

Pura Vida!