Sunday, September 4, 2016

Find Me On Tumblr

La Vida Tica

The title of this blog site is "". I made the blog for my year in Ghana, but I made the title vague so that I could continue blogging throughout college.

Well...that worked and it didn't. I've had so many experiences at CSU, Sky Ranch, and travelling the US over the past few years. But I didn't think to write about those things. I only wrote about Ghana, using the same somber tone Ghana evokes in me. Joyful, sometimes, but a somber joy indeed.

This blog is for Ghana. Ghana is life, whether I'm home or abroad.

But here's the deal folks...I am not in Ghana.

I'm in Costa Rica. And the tone of this blog doesn't fit this place. Here there are yoga studios and chicken restaurants called "Pollolandia". I am learning so much Spanish...but not only deep things like: "vale la pena."

I've learned the words for beet (remolacha), Lutheran (luterana) and tornado (tornado). Life here is fun and silly and full of relaxation and laughter.

And I think it might just cure me. Sometimes, it's good to look your grief in the face.

But I think it's equally good, sometimes, to focus on the fun and the friendship and the beauty. As you elevate these things, pain begins to fade. A little.

Thank you, Sky Ranch, for showing me that. Playing with campers, hiking through the mountains, and I felt so alive.

I am going to stop looking at Costa Rica in light of my experiences in Ghana. I will always have Ghana, and I'm not sure I'll always have this place. Of course Ghana will come's me we're talking about, after all...

But I am here. And it's time to fully be here. To laugh and play and fall in love with something, somewhere, or someone.

"Sarah," I am telling myself, "lighten up."

Since I've been here, I've met my host family, been to two parades, had an awesome hamburger with the best homemade fries ever, and realized the wisdom of the quote above my bed.

One of the best ways to stay happy is to stop going to the things that make you feel sad. (Quote hanging above my bed)

Parade with Oxen Carts

Peli's (I watched them cook my food over the counter)

Parade of Saints

La Familia Mendez

Pura vida! (Pure life, Costa Rica's tag phrase).

Chau, amiges! I'm starting a new blog. That's way more fun and so less heavy. I'll post the address when I've made it.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Vale la Pena


A veces, voy a escribir un blog en español  y traducirlo en inglés.  Bueno, esta historia empieza con mi amiga de Ghana. Ella pasa un tiempo duro en su vida ahora. No recuerde que la hora es diferente entre Ghana y Colorado (y Costa Rica también, pero ella no sabe que estoy aquí). Entonces, ella me llamó durante la noche, cuando estuve durmiendo. Dijo una historia que me molesta mucho, pero no voy a recontarlo.

Me molestaba y me molestaba. Después de clases, no pude hablar con mis compañeros porque estuve triste y nerviosa. Después de la muerte de Kofi, noticias de Ghana me da nervios con frecuencia.  Las noticias de mi amiga me molestaban, y empezaba a llorar.

Empiece una conversación con mi amigo DL. Bueno, DL me ayuda. Pero a veces, nuestras experiencias pueden ser tan similares que nos dolemos.  Entonces, tuvimos una conversación como fuego…quema mis problemas. Pero ya suelo las quemaduras.

Con todos mis problemas...mi mamá Tica, Noris, dio cuenta que estuve llorando. Y se dije todo…en más detalles en que normalmente habla de Ghana, Sakina, Kofi, DL y todo. Y ella tiene mucha sabiduría para compartir conmigo. Me dijo que cosa horribles existan en la vida, pero hacemos lo que podemos. Y a veces, amigos no se entienden, pero siguen estar amigos. Y que si algo está pesado en su corazón, es necesario que lo siga.

Finalmente, ella me recordó de la frase “vale la pena.” Significa “it’s worth it”. Pero sonido como “it’s worth the pain.”

Aprendiendo esta frase me hice recordar la placer que gano de aprehender las lenguas.  Con todos mis aplicaciones de becas y razones lógicos para estudiar español, me olvidé mi amor de este idioma. Es una cosa ver la frase “vale la pena” en un papel de vocabulario. Es otro completamente aprehender como la frase explica mi vida…con mis amigos de Ghana, y toda la pena he tenido en los meses pasados.

Mis amigos, o, mi vida valen la pena.  Siempre valdrán la pena.


Sometimes, I will write a blog in Spanish, and then translate it into English. So this story starts with my friend from Ghana. She’s going through a difficult time in her life right now. She doesn’t remember that the time is different in Ghana and Colorado (and in Costa Rica, too, but she doesn’t know I’m here). Because of this, she called me last night while I was sleeping. She told me a story that bothered me a lot. I won’t retell it here, it’s hers to tell.

It bothered me and bothered me. After classes, I couldn’t talk with my fellow international students because I was sad and anxious. After Kofi’s death, news from Ghana frequently makes me nervous. My friends’ news shook me up, and I started to cry.

I started a conversation with my friend DL. I mean, DL helps me. But sometimes our experiences can be so similar that we hurt each other. Today, we had a conversation like fire…it burned my problems away. And I still feel those burns.

In the middle of all my problems, my Tica (Costa Rican) mama noticed I was crying. And I told her everything…in more detail that I usually talk about Sakina, Ghana, Kofi, DL and everyone. She had a lot of wisdom to share with me. She told me how, in spite of the horrible things in the world, we do what we can. And how sometimes, we can disagree and still be friends. And if something weighs on your heart, it is absolutely necessary to follow it.

Finally, Noris reminded me of the phrase “vale la pena.” It means “it’s worth it” but it sounds like “it’s worth the pain.”

Learning this phrase reminded me how much pleasure I get from learning languages. Somehow, with all the scholarship applications, all my logical reasons for studying Spanish, I forgot my deep love for this language. It’s one thing to see the phrase “vale la pena” on a vocabulary sheet. It’s a completely different thing to learn how the phrase explains my life…with my friends in Ghana and all the pain I’ve endured throughout the past few months.

My friends, or my life, "vale la pena". They will always be worth the pain.