Living in Costa Rica during COVID 19, Part 1

Its all about the waves...

March 10th 2020, Nosara, Costa Rica was at peak high season. All of us with businesses were giving each other high fives for the best season we ever experienced. I had just made a quick trip to Colombia to re-stock my shop, Nativa Gallery, with emeralds and handmade muchillas. We had never seen so many people here, in the shops, on the beach, the hotels were full, construction and real estate were at an all time high. Forget about dinner without a reservation, the waves were pumping, it was noisy, busy, dusty and super profitable for this little tourist beach town.

Things changed overnight. We celebrated my sons birthday on March 11th and I will never forget saying to him, “What terrible luck you have turning 13 the day a world pandemic was declared”.

Nosara is a surf town, I came here to surf, do yoga and sell jewelry 16 years ago and carved my life out of checking the waves. My son, my boyfriend and I, surf practically every day. There are always waves here, and it’s all about the waves. There are more surf schools than you can count, surf shops, bikini shops, my best selling jewelry in my shop is wave designs. 

We were in shock when the town emptied out of tourists and dear friends in five days. We couldn’t believe it when the beaches closed. An older expat walking on the beach soon after was arrested, shots were fired out at surfers on another beach south of here. It was the government’s way of keeping a spring break scenario (like what happened in Florida) off the beach. No surfing is probably what we miss the most from this shift. At first, my American rebellious nature thought, it’s the ocean, that’s not the beach, and I ran to it. Then the shaming began. To me it was worse to be shamed than to get arrested. So, along with all the surf schools, and all the Costa Ricans, I followed the rules. This country respects authority, they respect the president, and they love their families. 
Christmas Nosara Surf...

See Part 2 for more... 


  • Barbara Bradley

    I realize after reading this that I also have some pent-up feelings about what we are living through right now. Thank you for sharing your personal story, it gives me insight into what you, Romeo and Jim are going through. You live in a paradise, but being restricted as you are, must cause a great deal of stress. I know my son and understand that Jim’s going nuts, not being able to go full speed ahead with his work and play. Now I know that you are much the same. :-)

    What can I do to help? The virtual jewelry party sounds doable. My friends were looking forward to your May, 2020, visit so that they can see and buy more of your beautiful creations. Shipping must be a challenge for you too. Please contact me so that we can put our heads together. Mother’s Day is coming!


  • Marie Roosendaal

    Wow! I did not realize things had gotten to that stage in Costa Rica. I am so glad we got to visit you before life changed so drastically. Hopng for better days for all of us soon. Love to everyone. I will check out your beautiful creations and follow your blog.

  • Linda Kenney

    Loved this Jennifer. Glad you are all well.

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