5 Things Costa Rica Does Well In Elections

Today is the election in Costa Rica. Like in many places, it's once every four years, and today they're choosing the new President and congressional representatives. I won't get into the different candidates, since any way I did it I'd be sure to alienate some people. So instead I'll focus on the positive aspects of the Costa Rican political system. I've chosen to quickly highlight five things that I like about the system here, and which I wish were commonplace in other countries. Again, this may Read more [...]

The Virgin of Los Angeles

I know what you're thinking: "There are virgins in Los Angeles??" Well, probably not, but that's not the Los Angeles or the virgin we're talking about here today. I'm talking about the Virgin, María, and her avid fan base in Costa Rica. "La Vírgen de los Ángeles," in case you really weren't paying attention at all in junior high school Spanish class, means "the virgin of the angels." If you're interested, you can read more here, but she's basically an incarnation of Mary. She's also the Read more [...]

“Holy Week”

Today is the first day of semana santa, or "holy week" in Costa Rica. Like most of Latin America, Costa Rica is Catholic, or at least ostensibly Catholic. In reality, whether a person is observant and goes to church really boils down to personal inclinations and familial traditions, but almost everyone is observant of one aspect semana santa: vacation! This week is possibly best described as a religious holiday tainted by a Spring Break ethos (or maybe even vice-versa). Most schools and public Read more [...]