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By a very strange series of events, I find myself in Costa Rica for two weeks. Not bad, eh? Except that I had to leave behind my husband and son in South Dakota. The morning I left them, the temperature at our house was right around zero degrees Fahrenheit. The more I soak in the sun down here, within shouting distance of the equator, the more buried in the deep freeze they seem. Every night by Skype they tell me about more snow, more wind, more frigid temps. All I can say is … pura vida!

“The pure life,” that translates as, but it seems to be an all-purpose phrase used by Ticos, as Costa Ricans call themselves. It can mean hello, goodbye, hang loose, everything’s great, thanks, how’s it going, life’s good, don’t worry, keep it simple….

Pura vida, even in a snowstorm.

(Easy to say from here, I know.)

Last night, as the sun was going down on the beach at Tamarindo, I enjoyed watching this little fellow who was enthralled with his new playmates, Sea and Sand. He was a joyful embodiment of pura vida!



Phyllis Cole-Dai

Phyllis Cole-Dai has authored or edited eleven books in multiple genres, including historical fiction, spiritual nonfiction and poetry. She lives in Brookings, South Dakota, USA.


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