Friday Lens Affair #40


Sarchi, Costa Rica

This week i’m hosting this colourful photograph taken by Miha from Travels with Miha in Sarchi in Costa Rica. If you wish to see more images and lear more about the story behind this particular photo please check out post about Sarchi.

Picture Story: Sarchi, Costa Rica

I, Michael, used to live there and Miha and I recently returned to spend a few weeks with my longtime dear friend Sonia Alfaro. Her father, Dauve Alfaro, had recently passed away. He was the co-founder of the canton (county) for which Sarchi is the capital. We accompanied her to the town’s 63rd anniversary parade. Where her and her family were honoured guests. The parade, a ceremony afterwards, and a monument were unveiled in honour of the founders.

Painted oxcarts are popular and iconic souvenirs in. Dauve’s father Eloy (Sonia’s grandfather) was a well known inventor and fabricator in Costa Rica. At his finca there is an elaborate system of pulleys and wheels which powers all the woodworking tools in the factory. Invented and put into place before electricity. Ingenious, inventive, and resourceful.

Her grandfather Eloy and wife are also the originators of the painted oxcarts. The oxcarts gained such popularity among the locals that it became a competition. There are oxcart festivals and contests throughout the country a few times per year to this day. As they grew in popularity, Eloy built the world’s largest painted oxcart which is on display in central park, Sarchi. You can visit the factory and watch them creating all sorts of intricate and artistic woodworkings. The one you see on the photo was just finished being painted and was drying.

And a little story behind the name of the blog. Miha was born and grew up in Romania, restricted from travel by the closed borders of communism. She had a burning desire to see what outside of those borders since childhood. Was in college at the location where the revolution broke out. After the revolution she swallowed her fears and left. Taking her chances through an agency to go to the US and work on a cruise ship, despite rumours it was a cover for human trafficking.

Hers is quite a story. Putting professional degrees aside. Working as cabin crew. Not speaking the language, discovering cold milk, working nearly 400 days straight. She became a flight attendant with an international charter. She often has a lot of times between assignments, and her company allows her to drop off and pick up for work from anywhere in the world. And she still has an incessant desire to see it all.

Despite the exhausting long flights and odd hours, she travels on her time off as well. She travels off the beaten path between work assignment wherever she might be. She travels while on vacation from her job of traveling.

She has been doing this for nearly two decades now, home on average maybe 1 week out of 4. It is rare to see a place she has not been, and we continue to load info on the site, but have a lot of catching up to do.


2 thoughts on “Friday Lens Affair #40

  1. Michele {Malaysian Meanders}

    Miha sounds like a fascinating woman. I really like the story behind the photo and the personal connection to it.

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