When I wake up in the morning wishing I was elsewhere, I am always nostalgic of Santa Teresa, Costa Rica. My emotional state of well-being peaked while there and my craving for happiness was totally met. Not that I don’t have an ongoing list of happy moments, because I do – but, “Pura Vida” is not synonymous with them all.
“Pura vida is a characteristic Costa Rican phrase. It literally means pure life, however, the real meaning is closer to “plenty of life”, “full of life”, “this is living!”, “going great”, or “real living”.
We fled Michigan’s December weather to a sunnier, happier, and warmer place. Walking off the plane in San Jose, Costa Rica (to catch our connecting flight to Tambor) made me feel like an overjoyed pup who can’t keep it’s paws still and snout off of your leg. Folks were so friendly right away, eager to share with us the joys of Costa Rican living, and ensured us how much we would love Santa Teresa.
The forty minute drive from the Tambor airport to Santa Teresa was rural. Not many people were spotted – but there were plenty cows. Every few miles we would see kids walking with groceries and a bypassing car. It was calm and I liked it.
Our arrival at Andy’s Surf Vista Villa’s was welcoming. Our ATV was ready, our villa was spacious, and the sunset view – was so spectacular. We had not done anything yet and I was loving Santa Teresa already.
Every morning I woke up to make breakfast before we left to fulfill whatever was on our agenda. It was perfectly good living at it’s best.
Up small private hill top you can find Surf Vista Villas of Santa Teresa. There is a panoramic ocean view to die for. Being awaken every morning by howler monkeys was a joy. I would get up to peek around hoping that I spotted one. I kept hearing them but never seeing them.
We headed down our hill into town on our ATV every morning to go to the beach. The first couple of trips down the hill freaked me out a little bit. I won’t lie, my boyfriend’s driving can be a bit unnerving. With me barely being 105lbs, my bottom lifted with every bump, rock, swerve, and dip. I was entirely more calm when I drove.
…to me, is one of the [many] best therapies in the world. There are so many words that I can not find to say that would properly articulate the bliss I feel internally. “Pura Vida”, right?
The only time I was knocked clear out of my bliss bubble was while trying to surf during the “low tide”. Juan, who stayed on the property of the Villa, was the in-house surf instructor. I had surfed before in California and that made me believe Santa Teresa’s beach would allow me to show what I learned before. I was terrible! And, speaking of this popped bliss bubble…after the wave took me out, the board lanyard wrapped around my neck and freaked me out. The waters weren’t calm, I was too much of an amateur, and I still don’t believe it was a “low tide”. (Ha) Justin did well though!
I’ll totally just lay fabulously on the beach…
…and try surfing again at our next destination.
There is no way to overdose on the pure life experiences we had here in Costa Rica. The morning I chose not to cook, whilst over looking the ocean, we ate at the Rocamar Beach Lounge. Rocamar was tasty and the drinks were delicious. We had gone the night before for cocktails and fresh guacamole to watch the sun set.
Santa Teresa is a perfect place for couples. Justin and I surely think so. But, Justin and I can find [even non-traditional] romance nearly anywhere. We have encountered some fortuitous situations that others may not consider so romantic in our daily lives – but, Costa Rica is highly favored on our romance scale. So my “media naranja” and I totally recommend Costa Rica as a getaway for you and your own media naranja.
While we pay homage to Santa Teresa/Mal Pais for ourselves and the likes of other couples, it became very evident to us that the pups had full bowls of the pure life spirit. As a dog owner and lover, I became saddened by the fact that my pup has never experienced a proper beach. There were so many friendly pups hanging out all over the place. We even had an in-house pup with us at the villa.
The moments when you are laying on the beach and no words have to be said are among some of the purest moments I have experienced. (Besides going to an onsen.) There really are no words.
John Kenneth Galbraith said it best:
Total physical and mental inertia are highly agreeable, much more so than we allow ourselves to imagine. A beach not only permits such inertia but enforces it, thus neatly eliminating all problems of guilt. It is now the only place in our overly active world that does.