Friday, October 28, 2011

Slugs, Bugs and then… Culture Shock

We found a black slug on the ceiling in our bedroom.  I guess it crawled in through the window in the middle of the night.  Gross.

Then, in our closet, I found two curiously circular mounds of dirt on the floor.  We swept it up, only to find another ring of dirt in the exact same spot the following day.  Upon closer inspection, I see these tiny ants crawling up through a hole in the floor.  We have anthills in our closet.  Sweet.

In addition to a slug and the ants, there are these mysterious flat, almond-shaped “things” hanging on the walls and ceiling of our house.  I noticed them the day we moved in.  I thought they were just some weird, dried up, dead bug, but last night as we ate dinner, I saw one on the wall and – jeepers-creepers – it was MOVING. I picked it up with my tweezers (after dinner, of course) and it turns out that they have this disgusting black tentacle thingy that pokes out that helps them mobilize… (No legs were visible!) It’s one thing to have a weird, unknown dead creature on your wall, and quite another thing to see it move around and have no idea what the heck it is.  I still have the heeby-jeebies and am on a mission to rid the house of all of them, dead or alive.

So with the slug, the bugs, the endless rain (we actually did finally get some sun this week after 14 days straight of the heaviest rains I’ve ever witnessed), and the different language, food, and lifestyle here, I had my first day of “culture shock” yesterday. It was really just more of a feeling of “I’m not at home,” which I fully expected to experience, but it’s different than I’ve ever had before because I know we’re actually living here.  Not a bad thing, just part of the whole adventure of settling in another country.

Besides all that, here’s a quick recap of the last week:
·      Thursday we visited the U.S. Embassy in order to get some documents notarized to sell our Subaru back in the states.  It was a total cluster, with lots of weird people waiting around, but we made it through and the car is sold.
·      Friday we had to go to the Costa Rican Police Station to get our fingerprints done to obtain our temporary residency here.  It was like going back in time 60 years: a room with blue peeling paint, fluorescent lights, and employees who write your information down in cursive.  I wish I could have taken a picture.
·      The weekend: we were introduced at church at both services and luckily didn’t have to say anything in Spanish in front of the congregation!
·      Monday: Kate’s first day of school.  She did great!
·      Tuesday/Wednesday: We started our tutoring classes to learn Spanish.  Our tutor is amazing and we are already learning/re-learning a lot.  It will be an uphill struggle though to truly become proficient in another language.

One thing y’all can pray for specifically is that all our paperwork for residency goes through.  It’s pretty complicated and very expensive and there has been a lot of misinformation leading to a lot of frustration and time consuming trips to get everything turned in.  We only have until November 20th – that’s when our endorsed papers from the States expire (birth certs, marriage certs, police reports) – and then we’d have to start the whole process over again…

Our internet is down and we are "borrowing" internet from some guy named Ed, apparently a neighbor of ours?? Anyway, it's painfully slow and I can't upload any pics.  When we get ours back up and running, I'll put some recent pictures up.  Until then...

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