One (of the many) reasons we moved to Costa Rica for the winter was to learn Spanish. That has been a lifelong dream of mine before moving to Quebec in 2008. I first travelled Costa Rica when I was 17 and again at 19 to improve my Spanish and salsa dancing skills. I am a firm believer that languages open doors of opportunities!
It has already been a week and we have three new tico friends; an engineer that lived in Montreal and even went to the Expo game, a bar owner who built a new bar himself for locals after tourism died because of COVID, and also a generous egg farmer who picked us up as we walked down a long road into town on day three.
We then bought a bike from the egg farmer who plans to help up negotiate better prices in Costa Rican Spanish in the coming week.
We wake up at 5:30 am as the sun rises to see clouds covering the Arenal Volcano, once quite active when I travelled here twenty years ago. We spend our mornings drinking coffee and studying Spanish. Me from English to Spanish and my boyfriend from French to Spanish. Then the rest of the day we try to communicate with one another in either Franglish, Spanglish, or Frespanol. The first week my stomach muscles hurt from laughing so hard and I can’t remember that ever happening in Quebec.
It is still rainy season here, so we wake up early morning to heavy rains, and even staying inside today because of it. If this was my yearly one-week vacation, I would probably have been upset, but since we have moved here for the winter, rainy days are more than welcome and a nice reprieve from +36C.
We live over 3km away from town, and it took us one hour to walk to a local river yesterday, with refreshing water. I suntanned on a rock in the middle of the flowing river and scooped up water in my travel purifying water bottle as my (50-year old) boyfriend was doing backflips from the rope swing.
We continued our trek home stopping at a Soda restaurant to eat local food. I had to stop for something cold and discovered a coconut popsicle which made my boyfriend giggle in delight. It is our slow days, slowly walking that he has never seen me do before make this venture all worth the stress and anxiety of leaving.
We stop and discover the ants, new trees, say hi to people, talk to locals, have afternoon naps, do yoga, cook food, shop for only what we can carry home ourselves, and make tropical natural smoothies every morning as our new way of life. See the dogs, and roosters, and iguanas roam free. We were so emotionally exhausted when we first arrived that we slept a lot, and I still wonder what “normal” people do on 1-week vacations.
We chose La Fortuna, because it is the adventure capital of Costa Rica, but didn’t even have energy to go for any tour yet. My big outing will be a full day at the spa with week!
I have worked ten years to be able to create this lifestyle where I am an entrepreneur, now 100% online. My clients, staff and subcontractors don’t care where I am physically located because I am able to give them just as good service if I was still sitting in my office in Quebec. That is the freedom I have always wanted.
What does freedom look like for you?
JADI KINDRED is the founder of Accent Unique Inc. Since 2011, Jadi has helped hundreds of business professionals and entrepreneurs from all industries improve their confidence speaking English. Her mission is to inspire greatness in others. One way of doing this is by her helping people become more culturally aware through communication and understanding. She is passionate about travel, spending time in nature, constant learning, and growing her company. She is a native of Saskatchewan, but in 2008 moved with only two suitcases to Quebec, where she began her new life and journey of entrepreneurship.