Hi! My name is Marieke, I'm 22 and I study Psychology at Leiden University in the Netherlands. After 3 and a half years, I finally managed to get my bachelors degree and I’m going to start my masters (Clinical Psychology) in September 2012.
So, between getting my bachelors and starting my masters, I’ve decided I would learn Spanish.
I will fly to San Jose, Costa Rica, on March 11 and stay there for two months. The first month I’ll be trying to acquire a basis of the Spanish language, and the second month I’m volunteering in a daycare center.
I am very, very excited, but also kind of nervous because I’m not fully done preparing for the trip and.. well, I’m leaving an amazing boyfriend at home…
I hope you’ll like reading my blog and feel free to post whenever you like!
May 14th 2012
10. WASHINGTON DC Friday, 11 May This blog, I will start of by excusing myself for not knowing exactly what I did every day of the last week. I guess I was too lazy to make little notes I usually do make and as all of those who’ve met me know: my memory sucks. So, I’ll just tell you about the days I actually did something interesting (or something uninteresting, but I still remember somehow). TUESDAY (1st)… Verena and I took a bus to Cartago, the former capital city of Costa Rica, to visit the ‘Basílica de Nuestra Señora de Los Ángeles’. Thanks to Verena’s terrible instinct of direction and my great instinct of knowing to go the exact opposite direction of wherever she says to go, we got to the Basílica without taking a wrong ... read more
April 29th 2012
9. PUERTO VIEJO y TURRIALBA Sunday, 29 April FRIDAY (20th)… In my last blog, I haven’t told you everything about that Friday yet. About the volunteer project: because of Montserrat, I get to work my last two weeks at the orphanage that Kevin also worked at! Of this place, she was also sure that they would definitely have work for me. :) About La Virgen: I didn’t go. Because I was feeling cranky and stressed and I had had to much disappointments for now in Costa Rica, and considering that I had no security about whether I would be able to actually go kayaking, I decided to play it save. I couldn’t hack being out there by myself when I would’ve been disappointed again. So, I joined Poppy and Emma on their trip to Puerto Viejo, ... read more
April 20th 2012
8. OBRAS DEL ESPÍRITU SANTO Friday, April 20 WEDNESDAY (11th)… Last night, Jessica and Hannah came over to have dinner together (Antijuntos!) and afterwards, we went to the bar street in San Pedro. Hannah’s forgotten to bring her ID, though, so we would only get into one bar (which wasn’t all that). We ran in to some people from COSI in front of another bar and because Jess and Hannah were pretty tired, they went home and I stuck with the others (Louise, Kevin and another dude). We went into a ‘club’ and there I spotted Emma and Serena (my roommates); Poppy wasn’t there, because she had already been too drunk and fallen asleep before they left for the club… Yeah. When Kevin, Louise and the dude left for home as well, I stuck with Emma ... read more
April 11th 2012
7. JACÓ Wednesday, April 11 THURDAY (5th)… This week is ‘Semana Santa’ (easter week) and I don’t have classes on Thursday and Friday, so I decided to go to Jacó. Jessica is ‘living’ there for 5 weeks. Verena came as well (from Manuel Antonio)! I got a taxi to the ‘Coca Cola bus station’ to catch the 11 o’clock bus and arrived at about 1.30 pm at the hostel ‘Beds on Bohio’. There, drinking diet Cokes in the sun, sat Verena and Jessica – waving at me. I joined them for lunch and afterwards, I checked in. Me and Neni were in the same dorm (Jessica stayed with her Tico family), but the room was freaking hot! There was a fan and an AC, but neither of them worked. Of course, I did not agree with ... read more
April 4th 2012
6. MANUEL ANTONIO Monday, April 2 TUESDAY (27th)… Although classes were ‘till 3.15 pm this week, today we had class ‘till 12 am, because Laura and I both wanted to go to Vulcán Irazú. This trip would include a visit to the volcano, and afterwards a stop at Cartago (the former capital city of Costa Rica) to see the great church that is there. So, at 12.15, Linnea (from USA), Erika, Laura and me got into a van with the guy who was going to drive us around. Halfway up the hill (or ‘mountain’ for the Dutch, haha) to the volcano, the car made a weird noise and the car started to smoke from underneath the driver’s seat. The driver pulled over and we quickly got out – being female and all, we didn’t know what ... read more
March 26th 2012
5. ARE YOU F*CKING KIDDING ME Monday, March 26 MONDAY… Third week of school. As every week, new classes are arranged and students are assigned to other teachers. Although this hadn’t meant anything for me yet, this week my class changed a bit. Instead of me and two guys, it’s just me and one guy now – his name is Bill and he’s from Estadas Unidas (United States). First being worried that this other guy had advanced too much for our class and therefore had exceeded me in Spanish, I soon found out to my consolation that we had actually exceeded him – so all was good again. I still have the same teacher this week – she is cute, small, energetic and looks like she could be Snooki’s mom. (What to do when you don’t ... read more
March 19th 2012
4. FESTIVAL DE LAS ARTES Monday, March 19 WEDNESDAY… On Wednesday, as on every other weekday, we had school from 8 ‘till 12 am and we had lunch with a group of COSI-students in a place nearby (3 minute walk). In the afternoon, I Skyped with Jotte for almost an hour! This was actually the first time we spoke on the ‘phone’ since I arrived, so I was obviously very glad to be doing so. As you might have noticed in my last blog, I wasn’t at first all that enthusiastic about being here. Not knowing what the hell I was doing here and being absolutely unable to remember why I wanted to go here in the first place, I didn’t wake up too excited the first few mornings. After I talked to Jotte, though, I ... read more
March 13th 2012
3. SAN JOSE, COSTA RICA Tuesday, March 13 THE TRIP… Sunday When on Sunday the alarm went off at 5:30, I instantly initiated the auto-pilot mode. I took a shower, got dressed, packed some last things (like my toothbrush)… and actually became quite nervous. The good thing, though, was that my being nervous made me a bit hyper, which led to me talking so much, that Jotte got out of bed (which is quite an accomplishment for him, at 6 in the morning)! We picked up his parents (who – additionally to my parents, my sister and her boyfriend and my best friend – come along to say goodbye/wish me good luck/etc. at the airport) and went to the airport to check in my luggage. We met the rest of my ‘entourage’ there, had some coffee, ... read more
February 29th 2012
2. THE FLIPPING OF THE STOMACH Oh my lord! – Those are the words that creep into my stream of thought every now and then, these days. Eleven nights are left for me to spend here, in the Netherlands – at home. After that, I’m not going to be home for 56 nights! Just thinking about this stresses me out. Mostly because of two things: I cannot have enough time to say goodbye to my sweet boyfriend who I’m not going to see for 3,5 months (stomach-flip!)… And secondly, I have to set up some sort of contract with my landlord and my friend who’s going to stay in my house for the 2 months I’m gone. That’s not such a big deal, but time is kind of running out – especially since the landlord is ... read more
February 1st 2012
1. THE DREADED MONTH When I woke up this morning, a ray of sunlight shining into my bedroom even though it’s freezing outside, I turned off my alarm and noticed today’s date. It is the first of February - the dreaded month. This is a month I dread because it means that in 30 days I have to be ready for my trip to Costa Rica, because I’m leaving on the 11th of March. Now, there’s not much left to physically do: I need to buy an adaptor that allows me to use American sockets; need to make copies of my health and travel insurance; and try my summer clothes on to see if I still fit them… And then of course buy new summer clothes. But those are not things that cannot be done within ... read more