Carol McCool and her Costa Rican Time Machine

Adventures of Conrad Von Supertramp; Quest For Excellence

Carol McCool and her Costa Rican TIme Machine

BY

Conrad Von Supertramp

We hopped into Miss Carol McCools time machine and headed out to Sunrise Mountain Farm.  Today was the day we headed to the farm.  We were so glad to finally see the property where we would be heaping to build the dream community of the future.  Reading the Magic of Thinking Big on the way.  It was always a gut check to know that even though I prided myself on being a big thinker I was limiting myself in a lot of ways.  The duality of understanding what I really wanted my elephant to charge toward really means I have yet to clarify my goals and dreams..  Sad thing is; I can drive my dream machine to lots of different things; but seem to continue to confuse both my Ant and my Elephant.

Carol; a writer dream weaver had spent a lot of love on the farm we were headed to.  We could tell that she had high dreams and high hopes to accomplish a lot with her beautiful peace of property.  She had been through a lot to maintain it and ensure she could one day live on it.  I have had the blessing of being able to read the stories about Sunrise Mountain Farm beginnings in an anthology of Costa Rica she and other expats wrote.  A peacemaker she maintains a highly active lifestyle with writing groups, peace groups, and others.  I can’t help but be selfish and think about what a terrific asset she would be to my TEAM.  What does she want?  Land that surrounds her property, her home of bamboo built, and a community to share her farm with.  How can a newby in the Leadership industry; where service comes first help her get what she wants through the Life opportunity?  Man up and at least show her the plan!

Along the way we traveled back into the past of the campesinos; the local indigenous people of Costa Rica.  We saw some of their communities in the mountains, beautiful little concrete block homes.  Makes me excited about the potential of ferrocement.

The entire trip seemed like we were in a constant mountain climb.  Luckily the time machine travelled smoothly up the roads; along with the cars and buses, but the surrounding landscape slowly begins to change.  The destruction of forrest for the use of cattle took place before our very eyes.  A city is built and torn back down again.  Getting an idea of what travel prior to the roads and machines of today via OxCart makes me shudder at the work that once had to be done.  It took weeks to travel.  To think that we were doing it in just about an hour and a half each way from San Jose, Costa Rica.   We will be about a half an hour from the ocean, on good days you can see the Nicoyan Paninsula from certain spots, and even get glimpse of the ocean while traveling.  Though not this day.

Picking up building supplies for the farm and some mail while going through Santiago De Puriscal we learn this is the nearest post office box.  The town is the largest community nearby and on the way to Salitrales; the closest town near the farm.  The town of Santiago De Puriscal is a bustling little community.  It was amazing to see all the people about in the streets, using the beautiful park, as well as the many small business in town.  There was even time to stop in a little music store and they had some Harmonicas available, unlike any I’d seen before.  Being a person who enjoys playing the Harmonica it was good to know I could pick up some other kinds nearby.  No top end names like Hohner but at this level of my playing a harmonica is a harmonica.  The double sided dual rowed harmonica; with G and C notes, was tempting in a highly challenging way.  My obvious lack of knowledge about this versatile musical instrument is in need of getting fixed.  Alas today is not the day to spend the $6.00 or 3.000,00 colones.

We got a nice education about Tico use of decimal places, and comas in numbers so no this wasn’t a typo but how the Tico culture sees numbers.  Also seeing 8 days in a week; and 15 days for two weeks.  Mrs. McCool is a wonderful teacher of the local population.  After some wrangling with the four wheel drive having loaded a 40kilo bag of cement repair supplies we were back onto the road again.  Riding with Carol is an educational opportunity into Tico life and culture.  It is no wonder she associates with some great anthropologists.  Learning to study people and cultures is an advantage when dealing with other cultures.  Her wisdom about the people, history, landscape and life of Costa Rica is better than any book I could have read.

Some more amazing information about the community, it has a large beautiful church in the middle of town.  However; in the last great earthquake the church was severely damaged.  Unfortunately the local community has no means of repair.  We are surprised that the church as a whole does not chip in.  Especially considering the Catholic Church; or more appropriately the Vatican, is one of the wealthiest institutions in the world.  According to wikipedia; which isn’t exactly guarunteed fact, a Fr Juan Cortez de Paja built the cathedral.  After killing a local indian princess with influenza he took a vow of celibacy; how the two relate I’m not sure, but he did.  On the centennial of her death is when the earthquake took place which damaged the church.  May be why the local Huetar people and campesinos aren’t in to big of a hurry to rebuild either.

Up and up and up we went; past Santiago De Puriscal to Salitrales, a one school town surrounded by coffee farms which were in full bloom.  Coffee farms, with wild sugar cane growing alongside.  My Lady was instantly at home, her two favorite things coffee and sugar to sweeten it grew within an arms length of the road we travelled.  Here is where things took a bit of a turn toward old world living.  The road to the farm is only about 2 miles or so; the number of kilometers escapes me and the need for relearning so much to adapt weighs on my mind, but the road, though beautiful is a bit of a challenge.  This would have to be done on foot if one were to take the bus into Salitrales and the reality of the 2 mile walk to the farm showed me why walking from and to the bus every day would be a bit on the difficult side.  Difficult, but not impossible.  Struggle of a cyborg.  I think about the frequent stops and difficult terrain my body would have to adapt to in this high altitude.  Can a cyborg do it?  The elderly gentleman we passed makes me think the answer is yes!

As we rounded a turn getting close and saw a huge image cut into the mountain side.  Triangles; can’t find the image to know what it is, though I know I’ve seen it before.  I promise myself to get a picture on the way back by; though that would be a promise I wouldn’t remember until it is to late.  The image was very large very pretty; across the valley from the Yoga retreat, an infinite number of triangles and the beginnings of these Adventures comes to mind  Potential person who might want to sell some land here, soon we go back down the road and see properties listed at $3-$12M2 and $10m2 with 1592m2.  The property with the $3-$12 dollars per square meters we find out is a developer with some beautify homes if you are looking to spend large sums of money and live in huge homes.  Our quest; is not just for excellence in our daily life, but sustainability within small home-space, but lots of land to play on.

This lead to some discussions about the real-estate bubble and we learned the effects of the 2008 bubble on Costa Rican real-estate.  More specifically the local impact.  Many people didn’t have internet, or information about developing properties and thus sold the properties for small amounts.  Then rich gringos came in and developed the land, put in water and electricity upping the value of the land and driving the prices up.  This seems to have caused some resentment on the part of the local people.

The entire trip has been a scenic voyage; especially for passengers who don’t have to wrangle the driving methods of the people along the highways of Costa Rica, but coming into the farm is simply breathtaking.  It is no wonder this area is known as the Garden of Eden.  La Cangreja National park borders the Farm nearby, but to get to the entrance is about a 20 minute drive.  However; for the adventurous spirit one might be able to get into the park on the back side, not sure about the laws on this though so enter at your own risk.  Especially since the area is full of jaguar as well as many other indigenous animals.

We meet one of the local families that lives on the farm; a great couple who have been with Carol through a lot, and Fernando the head of the house and foreman on the farm built the home, that now will transform into the community center.  The love that Carol must have within her blows my mind. Knowing that she deeded this beautiful home to this family sets a bar very high for those looking to share in kindness with her.  Her generosity is amazing; but instinct says this trust must be protected, and that HEART must be had by those wishing to share in this place.

We are greeted by someone who feels like a long lost companion, and are taken on our first tour of the farm.  Though we didn’t get to have quite the Adventure that Carol McCool had; hiking down into the creek, machete in hand, the adventure has been worth it as we are greeted by the spectacular view from the front yard of the community area.

We all walk through the guest house, currently occupied by one of the guest workers on the farm.  Brett is an amazing man, and the age on his face nowhere shows signs of his age.  If the living in high altitude beauty is doing that for him I can only imagine what it will do for my Lady and Little Man.  Only 7 years my senior he looks 7 years younger.  Gracious and giving I thank him for some recommended books.

On down to the home that was built for Carol; designed by her ex-husband we are again greeted with triangles.  We hear of the dreams of utilizing the kitchen area, and putting in bunk beds for guest workers and family members who come to visit.

Into the future I now roam, envisioning the things to come.  A whiteboard on the wall for projects and community information.  Out of the kitchen, we see in the atrium a water system to have the hatchlings or guppies feeding a seed bed system for the organic food that will sustain this community.  Created in a decorative way that accents the quality of the home/community center.  Somewhere nearby rabbit cages begin to develop.  The landscape changes and morphs into something yet unseen as past and future blend in a synchronistic harmonic convergence.

The chicken coop and goats could be kept in the old cow barn down the hill.  Wild mushrooms sprout along the trail.  Some of the neighbors horses hang around and help with the weeding, though they are prevented from the orchard via roses, blackberry’s and other thorny edibles and visuals that keep mischievous animals away.

We come to Carols house; she is sitting on her front porch enjoying her morning coffee.  I give her a good Tico shout of cooopa!  Practicing my enthusiasm.  As Frank Betcher says, “if you act enthusiastic you just can’t help but be enthusiastic”.  The habits of a community builder sunk deep into my subconscious mind.

She waves smiling her glorious smile.  The wind picks her red hair up a bit.  I look for the signs of what she needs from the food-stock and add it the list of supplies to bring back with me.  The gorgeous spot she picked; overlooking the orchard below where I go to work, her bamboo house elegant, small, completely speaking the life of Carol McCool in its very walls and essence.  Pictures, stories, memories, dreams all blended into a place of peace and comfort.  The sun is beginning to rise over the mountains, she has her virtual rehabilitator up and humming preparing to jump down the holoslide toward healing.  Someday she will write a tale for me I think.  Then dock myself a point for selfishness.

I stop and let the chickens out of their coop, extend the goats a good morning and greet the others busy milking and verily preparing the supplies for the breakfasts and dinners to come.  The bee hives hum to life, enriching everything around and providing honey for tea or coffee.  Rabbits are close to providing us a new litter and new homes are being built for them.  Fryers are being skinned and cooked.  The pelts are tanned in the tropical sun, making a variety of uses for the community.  I think back to my friend Mike; and his kids.  All dirt bikers and a great teacher to  little man; overall a wonderful family to have on the farm.

Off to the North; the green houses which protect from wind and bugs the varieties of plants not comfortable in the environment naturally.  Stopping by the vermicomposter and methane digester; which feed compost tea to the orchard beyond,  and provide electricity and fuel for the community, dropping off the scraps from the kitchen and garden waste.  Check the gauges and make my note.  Data reigns in our systematic facility.  In God we Trust all others must have data, as the saying goes.  Having resolved to keep score in the game of life every station has sections for notes and observation.  This helps keep people aware and thinking about the system that provides for them.

Above me; near the green houses, the Talapia farms are in full production.  The younglings from the community center atrium are moved down the hill; through a series of ferrocement water-tanks built into the side of the hill, finally culminating in the large pond where I will grab my dinner on the way back from working the orchard.  The Orchard is looking good this year.  High yields allowed for a lot of great tropical wines.  Recall some old biker teaching my Lady all about the history of the wine.  Known in some circles of Arkansas as quite a wine maker, his name slips me.  I shake my head in shame for not remembering.

I recall my first time to the farm.  Playing the mountain a song, being called Gabriel.  Fortunately I do not blow the Gabriel Horn to announce destruction, but rebirth.  Infinite potential.  Infinite wisdom.  Today I will play for the mountain again, only this time from a spot that I always go to first, before beginning my work in the Orchard.  Meditation, prayer, dream-building, and exercise all in a peaceful spot near the river.  The spot that was in my mind for so long.  A place to sit and discuss LIFE with my creator and savior.  My launching off point to the future we now occupy.  Sometimes my wife or son will come here with me to talk.  Generally it is my alone place.  To confer with the entirety of creation to ensure that our decisions, actions, and thoughts consider the next 12 generations of people.  Waiting for the next!  In the heat of the afternoon a quick hike will take me to the waterfall and I can cool off.  Probably finding my lady there, sliding down her slide into the swimming hole below.  Her place of peace.  A hammock sitting between a few trees, Lady Buttercat in all her splendid glory.  Who would have thought those games of using our imagination would work out so well for us.  Thanks Dr. Wolf

What an amazing trip it has been.  To think we were able to do all this and live back in the Garden of Eden.  How could my savior love me enough to allow me of all people to stay here?  Someday I would get to kneel before him and thank him personally.  It’s Monday; so I will be performing my systems analysis, the life of a cyborg.  Later; me and Little Man will practice some dirt bike riding up and down the mountain pass.  His training here will allow him to become the worlds fastest dirtbike rider, and eventually the first real Space Ranger.  Fulfilling the dream of launching a motorcycle into space.

Perhaps his mother and I will build our pods, and all three of us will meet at consensus in order to build a community on another planet.  Goals that were set at a time when they seemed illogical; for the purpose of becoming a writer; telling Little Man my tale in case of an early departure from starship earth, now seem to have come almost to fast.  They mean another journey without Little Man.  A hardship first endured in the loving embrace of this very place.  The only thing that could keep me from him.  LIFE, what a thing, what a business!  Providing financial means to ensure this place was a reality for generations to come.  Improving the roads through the community.  Purchasing the surrounding properties, and much of the other area of this valley to ensure it is placed on a secured path to reforestation.  Bringing about a lifestyle that is indicative of a time that was once almost lost, represented in the meek who live free and connected to the planet they call home.  Nowhere can many of the homes be seen, huts hidden by the forest providing ancient skills to be continued.

They lived a sustainable way of life, seeing the sacredness of the world and the presence of the creator and divinity in all things, and generally led fulfilling lives with far more leisure time than working class citizens of the industrialized world will ever enjoy.”

Thom Hartmann

The training ground for the survival skills necessary for complete sustainability in multiple times, no matter what happens to the world economy.   Allowing myself and others to live off the land, yet maintain harmony with technology and cyborgs.  Everything came together thanks to Carol McCools time machine.

Soon the time has come to leave the farm.  We hop back into Carols time machine and prepare for the journey back to San Jose.   The future has been built, now we must go through the analysis of specifics on how we get there.

The road is like riding on a roller coaster.  Little Man squeals with laughter and all I can think is to shout Yee-Haw!  Carol comments on him having a good sense of humor.  I now know why they call her McCool.  Her ability to maneuver the road, and handle the tiny pass with ease and a relaxed exterior are a model for others.  Definitely not a road for anything less than a 4-wheel drive.  My cousin would LOVE it.  Soon the bumping is starting to unnerve little man a bit.  His laughs sound less like laughs.  This part of the adventure definitely qualifies as FUN.  Carol mentions that sometimes people in the back of the time machine can get a little sick. I grab the compost bin and place it near the little man.

Heading into the future is always “bumpy” and full of turns.  One never knows what sort of Obstocales may try and get in the way.  With a tribe of Rascals though anything is possible.  Suddenly the chickens, orchard, everything disappears.  Future and past merge as I see myself being helped by Carol.  Meeting top leaders and business people all over the Central Valley.  We challenge political leaders to the 90 day mental fitness challenge rolled out by TEAM and LIFE for my birthday in 2012.  Embarrassing some politicians we team up with TicoTimes for an expose on the leadership of Costa Rica, America and other countries.  Showcasing the lack of leadership material and expanded thinking of some of those in charge, but in a gentle and loving way.  Encouraging many to become subscribers and profit sharers in the Life opportunity.

Bringing the LIFE opportunity to Costa Rica and creating a more peaceful world by instilling character training, and goal attainment to government agencies would not be an easy task but 100,000 people in Costa Rica is possible.  Overall infecting the host parasite (big governments) with a virus of positive thinking and personal improvement we truly do change the world.  We approached the leaders of Costa Rica about sustainability in their country and helped to up the ante on ensuring it happened by 2020, or 2030, depending on which report you read.  We saw in 2012 that they were woefully short of their goal and 8 years would take a lot of work to be successful.  We had the Magic of Thinking Big!  We had the LIFE business opportunity.  We had goals and a desire to help a lot of people.  We had the place to begin.  We had spaces, now all we needed was faces!

The journey through time brings Picaso to the farm.  His skill and style adding tremendously to the community.  He came with many others to help make Sunrise Mountain Farm a reality.  His help was instrumental in building our hatching pond at the community center.  He built an inspirational structure to give the moms and hatchlings a peaceful beginning to their life, so as to give us a peaceful belly at their end of life.  He learned some great bamboo building skills to add to his repertoire.

We travelled back and became pirates again.  Exploring the land for Atlantis in America.  Great navigators of the Ancient world we look for lost treasures told to us by someone who had been here before.

Soon we were back to the dilapidated church; damaged in a earthquake and never rebuilt.  St Francis of Assassi comes to mind.  His tale and my tale fussing again as I revisit his life and mine. 

Our bamboo shelter takes many forms before being complete, the geodesic design morphing into something quite spectacular.  Car windows, and doors from classic cars come to mind.  Cob design, bamboo, farraday cage all integrated into a place of comfort and luxury tucked into the mountain.  My Monticello built with my own hands.  Another goal that tore me between two realities while I tried to ensure they were built together.  Life, University of Freedom.  An educational revolution.  Becoming a person adept at ensuring he had the skills to provide for all his needs.  A team, a community, a group of people with heart who came together to build a new world.  Creating the homeschooling curriculum of the future.  We began having educational opportunities at the community center.  People traded skills with the locals.  We taught things like computer skills, they taught us basket weaving.  We taught english they taught us spanish.  We repaired homes, and changed lives throughout rural America from border to border.  The top of Canada to the Tierra del Fuego.   Worlds were brought together to ensure the health of all.  Many friends came to help us build this dream.  Some stayed, others left, all impacted the canton that we resided in.  Our community stretched around the world as we built teams to help us reforest much of the lost land.  Implement systems thinking into our food, health, housing and self.  Orrin had no idea how large of an impact his dreams might have or the growth they could cause when he dreamed of 1 million people.  He just knew he could hep bring about change.  Eventually we would work on the policy council together, which now ran the systems of world function.

The Delicious food lay gently in my stomach despite the bumpy ride.  Peace lay within my heart knowing that God had created such wonders, and allowed a person who many thought would never live to live long enough and well enough to see it.  Before we knew it we arrived back in Rainforest Dreams.  Like Jules Vern, we seem to have come back from both directions, unharmed and unsure of the future but having images of what is to come.

I cooked supper to serve my lady, delaying my gratification of writing, focusing on serving her and speaking her language of love.  Soon though it was time to go to work.  Dreaming and thinking I put on my black panama hat and grab a cigarette, swearing I won’t light it.  FITNESS!  I sit up above the outdoor patio and begin to write notes.  In the pursuit of excellence I avoid the rush of dream-writing normally performed and take a outline approach.  This story must do well.  This story must build well.  Thoughts scramble to prepare the story of Carol McCools Success.

I begin to wonder what she thinks, then shut it off because it matters not.  Focus, what can we offer to her?  What can we do for her?  What does she want?   Learn spanish, write, HELP, PEACE, change surface of earth, heal, give, LIVE ON THE FARM!  Negative emotions try to swirl, obstacles the villain tries to stop me.

Soon the words begin to type and before long I lose myself into the holoslide as the following comes to life….

We hopped into Miss Carol McCools time machine and headed out to Sunrise Mountain Farm.

On way back I was inspired to interview top Leaders, and best business people in Costa RIca  Road was a little bumpy and I know now why they call her McCool; she handled herself smoothly going up and bouncing her little time machine back to the future.  Future is a bumpier ride than going into the past.

Raised enough funds through community building to gravel her road for her, making her trip easier and a little less bumpy.

Impacted the overall community by creating educational opportunities at multiple levels.  Utilizing the Socratic Method.  TEAM and Team training system. POSITIVE INFORMATION FLOW!

How could we improve whole communities through our own individual learning and living efforts?  Train people in old ways; while simultaneously rehabilitating elderly homes and others to learn skills and apply them in fruitful ways.  NOT designed to make the sunrise mountain farms the center of focus, the people of the region become the focus.  Farms just becomes a further arena for people to stay and live in while they work.

Basket weaving, bamboo building, art, raising animals, concrete work, building talapia ponds that extend out of the side of the ground.

Travel to and from.

TRIANGLES, an infinite number of Triangles.

WHAT IF IT COULD BE TRUE!

So ends another amazing Adventure of Conrad Von Supertramp; The Quest for Excellence.

See the MOVIE

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