Moving On

This past Saturday (two days ago) was the UWC Costa Rica graduation. The are some important traditional elements for the UWCCR graduation, two student speeches (one in English and one in Spanish); a speech by a teacher; and a male and female team to emcee the ceremony. The students vote and decide on all these roles. At the beginning of the month I was told that I had been selected to host the ceremony, along with my colleague Juan Diego. It is an honor to be selected by the students, so despite my nerves, I said yes. After practicing saying all the names as many times as I could in the three days leading up to the ceremony, I felt ready. The names were what I was most worried about, so hopefully the students felt I did a good job! It was fun to have a “job” to do at graduation and to be part of something that is so important to these young men and women. So thank you students for selecting me!11357139_887451754648989_5300940998385237226_o During the whole ceremony I was trying to be aware of my face, I wanted to look happy as I didn’t want to be in the background of anyone’s pictures looking like a sourpuss or looking crazy. Unfortunately despite my best efforts, one of the student photographers (Blake Ashby) caught this:   11227881_1014593421886708_2069487503140865007_o Luckily that picture is the worst one I’ve seen. The speaker had requested that no one cheer until all the names had been called, then after the first name there was cheering and she looked over at us like “really?!”. And my reaction was caught for all eternity. But I recovered, and got this nice picture with a student, with both our eyes closed. 😦  Not the best photography day for me!

With Amiya Naurla, one of my great students and recent graduate!

With Amiya Naurla, one of my great students and recent graduate!

On Saturday evening a small group of friends joined me at my favorite restaurant in Santa Ana, Al Tapas. Unfortunately, they weren’t having flamenco this past Saturday, but we had a fun time despite that. IMG_1126 While getting ready to leave for the restaurant I was looking for a plastic bag for my friend Misty, so she could more easily carry some items I had given her. As I went through the pile of bags, I discovered a very unwelcome house guest.IMG_1120 This is a tarantula and it was about the size of my palm. Misty, who is much braver than I, was able to get it into a bucket and take the unwanted guest into the garden. I hope, I pray, pray, pray, pray that it stays in the garden!

Today while leaving the campus I got a little treat.

Caught in the selfie-taking act.

Caught in the selfie-taking act.

Turned out pretty good, if I do say so myself!

Turned out pretty good, if I do say so myself!

Its easy when you have a cooperative model.

Its easy when you have a cooperative model.

My time here is coming to an end, but I feel fulfilled by the things I’ve done and especially by the people I’ve met. Costa Rica has been an interesting and at times frightening (see above tarantula photo) experience, but I am so glad I made the decision to give this place a try. Even though in the end it wasn’t the best fit for me, I’ve learned a lot about myself, met some amazing people and I don’t have any regrets. I will miss my students and friends of course, and probably the weather. I will miss all these yummy fresh foods each week at the feria:IMG_1128 And I will miss delicious treats with Alex:

Gluten free too!

Gluten free too!


About Andrea

I am teacher and traveler blogging my experiences living as an expat from the USA. From 2007-2012 I lived and worked in Oregon, USA. From 2012 (when I started blogging) to 2014, I lived and worked in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates. In August 2014 I begin living and working in Santa Ana, Costa Rica.
This entry was posted in Costa Rica, Expat Life, Food, Friends, Gluten Free, Work and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Moving On

  1. Congratulations on a satisfying year! I can’t wait to see where your next adventure takes you!

  2. SARALEE B CROFT says:

    Andrea I have totally enjoyed your years of travel and teaching hope to be able to meet up at some point!


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