An interview with a few Costa Rican locals
If you’ve made it this far you’ve maybe come across the term “pura vida” already. If not, maybe we decided to move this feature up to the front, who knows, arranging a magazine is a weird process. But that’s neither here nor there— but somewhere more than likely. The term pura vida translates to “pure life” but that’s just the literal take. To get closer to the truth, we posed the following question to a mix of Ticos, expats and visitors …
About yourself: Escribir, asistente en galería, empiezo con café y me cuesta despertar.
Why is the phrase pura vida important? Porque es identitaria.
Moved to Costa Rica
About yourself: I’m studying architecture. I like to start my mornings taking a shower. One of my favorite songs is “Somebody Else” by The 1975.
Why is the phrase pura vida important? Because it can be used for anything in order to express something going good or well.
About yourself: Architect.
Why is the phrase pura vida important? A way to live.
A memory or short story about when you experienced this feeling in Costa Rica: Being in front of the ocean.
Moved to Costa Rica
About yourself: I live and work in Nosara with my family.
A memory or short story about when you experienced this feeling in Costa Rica: I went through the peak of the pandemic in this country with the Costa Rican people. I respected the lack of panic, anger and rage the people exhibited—unlike back home— and instead faced it with peace and love.
Someone who spends time in Costa Rica
About yourself: I’m in finance when I’m not surfing or skiing. I’m the owner of the Nosara Surf Shop in downtown Guiones. My passions are surfing, skiing, yoga, guitar and live music. The best part about being in Nosara is our relationship with the Ticos.
Why is the phrase pura vida important? Oh, it embodies the Tico approach to life. Live the pure life. Barreling waves overhead? Pura vida. Flat tire on the way to Nicoya? Pura vida. North Guiones way too crowded? Pura vida. A perfect day of surfing then an amazing steak at La Brasa? Pura vida for sure. Don’t sweat the small stuff and enjoy life, is what it means to me.
About yourself: I am a former professional surfer and actual high-performance and development surf coach. I travel a lot, normally my mornings start with a cup of coffee. I like all kinds of music and I am super passionate about what I do. I love my family and love my country.
Why is the phrase pura vida important? Because it is the spirit of the Ticos.
A memory or short story about when you experienced this feeling in Costa Rica: Every single day when I say hi to someone in the street, when I surf, when I see my children growing healthy.
About yourself: My day usually starts kinda early. I get up and get ready for my daily commute. I choose some music and start riding my bike to work. Today I listened to a kinda chill and mellow DJ set from Tom Churchill. I work as café manager at Outpost in Nosara.
Why is the phrase pura vida important? As a Tico, pura vida is everything. It’s a phrase we can use for about anything, but it’s always something good. To me, right now, pura vida means focusing on life itself, all the little details and small things about life that make it wonderful to be right here and now.
A memory or short story about when you experienced this feeling in Costa Rica: A couple of months back, I had just started working and living here in Nosara. I was just leaving work, a little bit late as we just had an event, and I got a flat tire on my bike. A really bad flat tire, there was no way of fixing it, so I started walking while carrying the bike. I still had about five miles ahead of me, when out of nowhere a lady on a motorcycle pulls up. She asks me if I’m ok. I say yes and explain the whole situation and she just says, “Hop on the back with your bike and I’ll give you a ride.” For a second I was just shook, it sounded like the worst idea ever, but then it was super clear. I had a problem and life was just taking care of me. “Let go of fears, Juan, let me help you out. Live life.” That’s what I heard in my head. So I just hopped on the motorbike, mountain bike on my shoulder, and got a ride home from Zaida, a lady I didn’t know at all. You can’t get more pura vida than this!
About yourself: I work as a lawyer, and start my mornings with exercise and then five minutes of meditation. I am definitely a morning person and like to, when possible, have a positive mind about problems. Bad Religion all-time favorite band hands down.
Why is the phrase pura vida important? Because we really are like that, we are proud of it and even if we don’t realize, it characterizes our country. A memory or short story about when you experienced this feeling in Costa Rica: Just going to rural areas and spending time with locals, they are the most welcoming, good and honest people and always with a smile in their face. That is pura vida.