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Posts by Lauren Weihe

Gallo Pinto & More Gallo Pinto: (Not) Getting by as a Vegetarian in Costa Rica

Lauren Weihe is a student at Doane College and is an ISA Classmates Connecting Cultures  blogger corresponding with students at Pound Middle School in Lincoln, Nebraska. Lauren is currently studying abroad in San Jose, Costa Rica on a Fall 2B program.

A major part of any culture you visit is the food, and often times you can learn a lot about the people by sampling the local cuisine or visiting a supermercado or even a local feria (farmer’s market) if you can. In San Jose, I recommend the Feria Zapote, which takes up an entire city block and is packed full of vendors selling freshly-grown fruits and veggies as well as homemade bread, cheese, meat, and artisan crafts. It’s wonderful!

Being vegetarian in Costa Rica means there are a lot of dishes I won’t try, but I usually don’t have a problem asking for something vegetariana or sin carne when I eat out.  For this post, I tried to compile a “top ten” list of foods in Costa Rica, but very quickly realized that once I listed gallo pinto, the national dish in Costa Rica, there were few other foods I could think of.  Sure, there’s plenty of restaurants in San Jose, but as soon as you walk into a soda (small, local restaurant with few options and usually very cheap) or restaurant with typical Costa Rican food, there is little variety to be found.  Nonetheless, here are ten foods I’ve eaten in Costa Rica that are more or less unique or otherwise very common in the country.

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Daily Life and Free Time in San Jose

Lauren Weihe is a student at Doane College and is an ISA Classmates Connecting Cultures  blogger corresponding with students at Pound Middle School in Lincoln, Nebraska. Lauren is currently studying abroad in San Jose, Costa Rica on a Fall 2B program.

Well, I’ve survived a hectic first week of classes down in Costa Rica.  My typical school day looks something like this: get up around 6:30-6:45, breakfast at 7, class from 8-12, lunch and occasionally ISA meetings, a couple hours of break (also known as homework time!), then class until 6 or 7 at night.  The class schedules here are much different, and in many ways more demanding than at home, yet at the same time much more relaxed.  Although I spend 6 to 8 hours every day in class, I don’t often have much homework (unless it’s for my conversation Spanish class, for which I have 3 oral presentations this week).

Students getting lunch at the Plazoleta at Universidad Veritas. The large columns are a student art project.

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Let the Adventures Begin!

Lauren Weihe is a student at Doane College and is an ISA Classmates Connecting Cultures  blogger corresponding with students at Pound Middle School in Lincoln, Nebraska. Lauren is currently studying abroad in San Jose, Costa Rica on a Fall 2B program.

I can’t believe this is my last night at home—the last time I’ll sleep in my own bed or look out my bedroom window at our quiet suburban neighborhood.  Well, the last time in three months anyway.  In 24 hours I’ll be on my way to the land of “pura vida” (while enduring several more hours of my overnight layover in Houston, which is sure to be an interesting experience).  But let me back up a bit and tell you more about me. Read more

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