Up in a Tree House-Finca Bellavista-Part 1

It’s 2010. Twenty-Ten – don’t you like the sound of that? In honor of the new decade I’m putting out of my mind that it’s been a month since posting a blog. Let’s start anew without resolutions. They just cause stress. And thus begins my recollection of a first in a lifetime experience, up in a tree house.


You’d think that the rainy season would be the perfect season for the Rain Forest Aid concert on the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica, but hardly anyone came and most of those have gone home – the ones who could slip and slide their cars out of the parking lot. At the finale, the rain pours down on the soccer field splashing mud up to our asses. Barely audible through the pounding rain I hear, “And now, the big raffle prize! The ultimate tree house experience, a weekend stay at Finca Bellavista goes to …… Jill Green.”

“Wow! I did it.” My persistence has paid off. This obscure concert, its meager attendance dwindled by constant rain, has raised my chances of winning the big prize by a huge percentage. First I had to find the booth with the raffle box in which to stuff my ticket stub. Even the concert (dis)organizers sent me on a wet and wild goose chase. “Bellavista? Never heard of them. Try the bar tent; they oughta know.”

Pushing through the only dry crowd, I ask the bartender.

“Never heard of Bellavista, but try the booths out on the edge of what’s left of the soccer field.”

Finally I hit paydirt – a small box plastered with a Bellavista pamphlet, a smiling young couple behind it. “This must be the place offering the tree house adventure?”


“I had a hard time finding you guys. Even the organizer, who lives in a tree house, didn’t know there was a tree house vacation raffle.”

“Yea. Pretty unorganized,” the guy introduces himself, “Hi, I’m Matt. You’ve got a good chance of winning.”

“And I’m Erica. Hardly anybody’s found the way over here to stuff their stubs.”

My  on-again-beau is by my side when I  deliver from the heart, “It’s for two. You wanna go with me?”

“Of course.” His grin becomes a kiss.

“How about when we both return to Costa Rica in the fall?”

“What a perfect place for a rendezvous after an extended separation,” he twinkles.

Tune in next time for the encounter.

Flying Dreams

Finally, I’ve had a fully fantastic flying dream. It’s been a long time. Dreaming is my other reality and a very important part of my life that just ain’t happening much these days. And flying – I’ve only had a smattering of those since my youth. Friday night we were camping at Rocky Ford on the Myakka River, FL. I was watching a bright moon pass over as I finally fell asleep.

Then my mother, my son Ray and I were puttering in the kitchen of an old Florida house, wide veranda and open doors drawing in the breeze. I noticed a strange shudder ripple the water in the sink. A quake? I looked out at a massing black funnel cloud barreling towards us, drawn by huge gusts of wind. Leaves, branches, soon, up-rooted trees flew by. The house rattled, banged, shook loose from its moorings (I know – Just like Dorothy’s in the Wizard of Oz.) and started spinning up through the air.
I grabbed mom’s hand and yelled at Ray to grab the other. As the house started dipping and diving towards earth, I saw a man standing, staring up at us, hand like an antenna raised high, fingers wide. As we slid down and off the veranda, the man reached out, until our fingers touched, hands linking, and pulled us back to earth like errant floating balloons. A fearless exhilarating energy infused us all in the moment.

Welcome back you crazy dreams. I’ve missed you.

Are You Somebody?

After reading Nuala O”Faolain’s memoir Are You Somebody? I shed a few tears:

  • for the  pain and the beauty in this little treasure of a book I found at Goodwill.
  • for how it relates to me (we’re so egotistical aren’t we) and all women.
  • for the memory of my mother, whose birthday is today.
  • for my close friend’s mother’s dying, her funeral being today.
  • for my ill health. My stomach hurts from some undiagnosed what?
  • for my inability to settle my unruly thoughts, sort through them into a coherent view of my life and its relationships.

She tells her story with such honesty, power and frankness from a horrendous Irish childhood into her 50’s as she begins to deal with aging.  This American edition includes her Afterwords – the letters and stories she received. She just needed to tell her story having no idea that the instant best seller it became meant so much to so many people, especially women.

I was ready to write to her too, but found I was too late. She died late in 2008. I’ll write here instead. Hope to be posting some short stories soon.

And I thought I was going to write something funny and smart. Next time.  I’ll be back to my old optimistic self tomorrow.


It’s all out there now. Public. That’s what I keep forgetting. And there’s so much of it. (At least nothing goes out until I hit post.)

  • I sit here listening to NPR. The bailout -don’t continue to give to the haves. Pepsi’s Gatorade change to G – what a slap in the face!
  • CR sends me an email with  youtube.com Playing for Change – I want to dance inside and out. Each computer site I enter leads me away to another.
  • In the car, listening to an audio Loving Frank (Lloyd Wright) by Horan -what a preposterous genius. Need some visuals and background. Find a book, go on-line.
  • Nap time is for reading a book in print, Are You Somebody? by O’ Faolian. Still buy the Herald-Tribune, but how much longer will I keep the wonderful, archaic habit of reading the paper with the requisite cup of coffee? CRB sends email – the Costa Rican major newspaper La  Nacion, will probably have to give up print and go only on-line.

My mind’s awhirl. How did life change so much in such a blink-of-the-eye? And I didn’t even get to TV.

Hello world!

Gotta start somewhere. I’m sending this out to my meager email list. If you access my blog please reply and tell all your friends. I am also on Facebook. My son Ray is helping me get started. My blog name is CostaJill.com or do you already know that? I’m interested in learning how this whole internet writing world works. I understand that works on paper are almost obsolete. I’ll be posting my thoughts and writings – political, personal, whatever is entertaining or interesting at the moment. Hope you join in. Got any questions, hints, suggestions? Let me know. Hello world. Jill