City Girl in a Different World

AM volunteer Jaida gives her first impressions on transitioning to life in Potrero, Costa Rica.

By Jaida Moore

“Thankfulness is the soil from where joy grows.” -Unknown

I wake up every morning to the sun shining and a tropical oasis outside my window.  I can walk out of the house and have my pick of fresh fruit off the tree: mango, star fruit; whatever I can reach. More importantly, the walk to a beautiful white sand beach is only five minutes away, and I can take my pick of which one I want to visit that day. While at first glance it looks like paradise, there are definitely some things I have had to get used to:


The average temperature is 82 degrees, yet being so close to the equator makes it feel a lot hotter!  I often feel like I’m the only one sweating or at least the only one complaining about it. Your best bet is to sit in front of a fan. Not even a window unit in sight. Today I rode in a car with air conditioning and I thought I had won the lottery!

Dirt Roads

I have lived in the south and even played outside every day as a kid, but I have never seen this much dirt and dust on my body before. Not even riding ATVs through mud in Jamaica resulted in this level of dirt.  From my knees down is a totally different color from the dust. Whenever I feel embarrassed, I just look around and see that everyone else is in the same boat!

Cold Showers

Now with the tropical heat and all, one would think that a cold shower would be refreshing…NOT FOR ME! No matter how hot I am, my body goes into shock every time! I still haven’t been able to brave sticking my entire body under the shower head. Maybe in a few more weeks! Having to take multiple showers per day due to all the dirt and sweat will probably force me to get used to it eventually.

All that being said, I still get to live in one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. While there are some bumps in the road (literally!), there are still plenty of things to bring a smile to my face each day. So thankful for the small things that bring joy to my life!

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3 Responses to City Girl in a Different World

  1. obiandween says:

    girl, i’m here to wish you the best of luck with those cold showers!! after 10 months of living in costa rica, i never got used to it!!! hopefully you’ll have better luck than me!

  2. fuzeus says:

    Love your writing! It’s really difficult to survive in a place where nothing is provided like home. But it’s also the fun part about volunteering, right? I remember the time when I was to teach kids in yangshuo, one of the tiny towns in China. To me, it was a cultural shock to see a hole in the ground that was provided to function as a toilet…

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