4/20/12 So Much Missing

Some weeks ago, I sat down to draw the house where James and Birgitte and their five kids lived. What I came up with was an acceptable likeness of their house and farm, but there was a lot missing from that simple pencil drawing. It lacked all of the minute details that made this house a home. Drawings and paintings covered the house, books lined the walls. Trinkets and trucks told of maturing young ladies and active little boys. Pots and pans drying and ready for the next bake, the next meal. The large table that had room for everyone and more, where delicious homemade food and inspiring conversation were always found. My drawing lacked the horses that were loved as pets, goats getting milked and chickens out for their late afternoon scratch around. This house, this farm, was always my favorite place in Costa Rica. It captured the essence of life in the campo, of the real Pura Vida, of family harmony and productivity.

But all that is gone now. The family that cruised the hillsides on horseback has been blown apart. Their business is gone, their home empty, their fields provide them nothing now, their horses and goats given away, their dogs and cats with other families. The confidence and security that James and Birgitte's kids were growing up with was jolted and will take time to regain completely. If a family so benign could be so aggressively harassed, and the state so boldly disregard an opportunity to converse in law, then I am afraid that the bigger picture looks quite bleak for the rest of us. However, optimist that I am, I am very curious to see the pieces come together. Recent interest in this story has necessitated a pause, but James' magnifying glass will continue to examine the many details in this case. There is so much more.

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