This weekend I bought a bottle of mango juice. When we got back from our trip to Costa Rica a few years back, we didn't want to let go, so we started drinking mango juice every morning with breakfast, and we kept ourselves stocked with avocado and hearts of palm at all times. Eventually we stopped, but still, these foods remind me of pura vida
(pure life - the good life), blue-green mountains topped with clouds like thick white frosting, the central valley spread out before us, a steep waterfall slicing the length of a dark green mountain in the Orosi river valley, fat orange flowers (heliconias
) hanging between green leaves everywhere we turned, the feeling of being in the rain forest (green wet leaves raining life teeming all around me), the dark blue pool where I would float - silence, Marlin's open-air restaurant cool shade and shadows with palm trees sunshine ocean across the street (Bob Marley, ceiling fan breeze), the couple from Toronto who had driven in their youth from Canada to Belize and back again, our wiry guide to the national park who'd moved from California to start an herb farm (wink wink), Carlos who drove us from the central valley to Manuel Antonio (talking to my husband in Spanish, stopping at a road-side stand for fruit juice and snacks, showing us crocodiles on the bank of a river). All this and more comes back to me with a glass of mango juice. I wish I could be there now.