Traveling Nancy

Traveling around the world as far as I can go.

BambuTico and Farewell Party + Feb 18

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At breakfast I tried a new fruit called Pejibaye which is a national fruit of Costa Rica.  I heard about it the other day from Sue and Anne.  Emilia and Elise put mayonnaise on it.  It had a strange, kind of stringy texture.  I only ate a small piece of it.

After breakfast we drove to a Bamboo Factory named BambuTico.

Lee interpreted what the great granddaughter was telling us.

  • It is a family business that was started by the great grandfather of woman who was giving us the tour. He was growing bamboo for pleasure.
  • Her father realized that they could turn this pleasure into a business.  In about 1980 the Retana Quirós family started making furniture and now have expanded and now grow 72 species of Bamboo.
  • In addition to handcrafted items, they sell raw material, do construction, and created Bamboo furniture.
  • 7 of the 10 children work

The family learned a lot from China and other Asian countries about the processes they needed to use and then adapted them for their own needs.  On our tour we learned about the process of growing, cutting, immunizing, and cleaning the bamboo for use.

When we were looking at the handcrafted projects, Susan was enjoying some time with their dog.

I took a few photos as we toured the factory.

They fire this wood to make it bend.

He is cutting a notch in the bamboo.

Then the pieces can be bent to make a form.

The forms are put together into a square shape.

And use to make a piece of furniture.

Quiro is holding a black bamboo.  The seeds for black bamboo come from Indonesia.

An interesting fact is that bamboo actually has veins. They inject chemicals into one end of the bamboo to treat for insects.  Then the chemicals travels through veins in bamboo.  The insecticide is colored so when it comes through the veins they can tell it has reached the other side.

As we were touring the factory, I took a photo of Quiro’s wife, Daysy, and there son who joined us at the factory.


After the factory we went to the home of José Rojas and Flor Herrara for afternoon treats.  They bought this place in order to have a spot to entertain their friends.  The pumpkin soup and other treats were delicious.

Chemo Jose Maria and Antoniela served the treats to us at the party.

Eliza took Sue and I to see an orchid growing along the road.

I took a photo of Eliza and the orchid.

Emilia, Elise and I went home to get ready for the farewell party in the afternoon.  Emilia gave me this beautiful bamboo cup that she purchased at the factory for me.

The Ticos in Peréz Zeledón threw an amazing farewell party for us at the home of Dunuvio Bedoya and Blanca Rosa Barrautes.  They created these beautiful bouquets of real fruit on each table.

For some reason the photos that Emilia and I both took lack quality but I am posting them for memories.

Speeches were given praising us and the lasting friendship being formed among all of us. Maria Elena made a poem out of the word, “Amego” describing all the wonderful characteristics of friendhip.

This is Marena Elena, Quiro, Blanquita, and Daysy.

Omar, Eliza, Emilia and Elisa were having a great time.

I held the Costa Rican flag.

Our Oregonian group had our photo taken with Elise…

… and again without Elise.

Susan with her host, Elvie.

Lee, Ann, Omar and I

Sangria was served along with several treats.  The time I have had with Emilia and Elise is imbedded in my heart.  I can hardly believe that this is our last night together.


This man sang for us and we danced and laughed and danced and laughed  and danced.and laughed for hours.

The fun loving nature of the Ticos in Peréz Zeledón is infectious.  Eliza and Omar were dancing.  I love to see them together.

Chema José Maria  and  Antonieta

The men and women are fabulous dancers.  We all had so much fun together.  I wish I had taken photos of every person at the party.

We were served a delicious dinner and then we sang and danced some more.  It was hard to leave this wonderful time of laughter and joy.

Emilia, Elise, and I were on our way home when I realized that I couldn’t find my cell phone.  I must have laid it down when my Oregonian friends sang a silly song for the Ticos. I couldn’t believe I had done that.  Emilia and Elise were very tired.  Emilia pulled the car into a parking lot by a bar and texted her cousins.  She had to make several phone calls to try to figure out who had my cell phone.  Catalina (one of Emilie’s cousins) and her boyfriend, Mario came out to the car.  After many calls, she discovered that Lee had my phone. and we called her at the home where she was staying. Lee could have brought the phone to me in the morning, but she didn’t have the correct cables to charge it.   I was so surprised when Emilia took me into the bar and introduced me to another cousin, Lizbet (Catalina’s Mom) and her father, Sigifredo. The music in the bar was really loud.  Lizbet took me onto the dance floor and we danced.

There were strobe lights and a small band.  The sounds were very, very loud – louder than at our farewell party.

Emilia and Elise went in the car to get my phone from Lee.  Lizbet and I kept dancing.

This is Sigrfredo and Lizbet.

This is Mario and Catalina.

Catalina and Mario also danced.

A man who had been on the dance floor came up to the table and asked me to dance.  I looked at Emilia’s cousins and they nodded their heads.

One of her cousins took a video of my dancing and sent it to Emilia but I can’t upload it to this post.

After a short time they all came up to dance with us so it was a group dancing.  I think it took Emilia and Elise at least 45 minutes before they returned to the bar with my phone. Although it was another adventure and story to tell,  I am so embarrassed about causing this problem tonight.

When we got home, Emilia and Elize had tea and cake and served tea to me as I started to work on this post. It is 1:15 am and I too tired to think clearly anymore so I am finally going to bed with memories and thoughts about the fabulous, fun filled, caring, loving people of Peréz Zeledón on my mind and in my heart.  I know I will stay in contact with many of the people.

Author: Nancy Panitch

Traveling has been a passion of Nancy Panitch's life and she loves seeing how people in other cultures live. Her travels have taken her to many places within the United States, Asia, Europe, South America, and Africa. Being around people inspires her and she has much gratitude for the kindred Souls that are joining together with her in body, mind, and heart. She moved from Chicago to Portland, Oregon in 1982. It was one of the best decisions of her life. While in Portland she stays very, VERY busy. She volunteers (Inter-Religious Action Network, Human Rights Council, & ushering for various theaters); attends a Unitarian Universalist church; goes hiking with groups (Cascade Prime Timers & Trails Club of Oregon) and also with individual friends. Book groups, movie group, and bridge groups occupy her time as well. Her quiet activities include yoga, knitting, Sudoku, and reading. She enjoys all of these activities, but making time to see her wonderful 4 grandchildren takes priority over it all. She is happy to share this blog and hopes to encourage others to travel.

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