To share my love of the ocean with my family, we used an empathetic process to apply the principles of graded exposure

The author’s wife, enjoying an encounter with a giant sea turtle.
The author’s wife, enjoying an encounter with a giant sea turtle.
Photo by Author.

I love everything about the ocean. There is nothing more spectacular than the experience of snorkeling or diving surrounded by ancient and majestic sea creatures. The empathy and intelligence of whales and dolphins that is almost palpable. The hypnotic movements of sea turtles. The thrilling nonchalance of passing sharks. Darting reef fish, waving corals. It’s like entering a different universe.

There is one thing that I love more than the ocean. And that is having the chance to share these experiences with a loved one. Over the 12 years that I have lived on Costa Rica’s Osa Peninsula, I have…


I’ve also kept that weight off for ten years, with the added satisfaction of making more sustainable choices for the greater good.

Before and after photos of the author.
Before and after photos of the author.
Image by the author

Over ten years ago, I used to weigh 247 pounds. At the time, I was working at HSBC Bank and working 70 hours a week. The only exercise I got was running back and forth between offices and the occasional networking golf day. Although I had previously been a very active person, even my high metabolism could not handle the three double cheeseburgers that I wolfed down whenever I got two seconds to eat.

In my teenage years, I had been focused on building muscle for sports. …


How Homemade Ginger Beer Has Made Me Happier and Healthier

Photo by Kim Daniels on Unsplash

I used to think that brewing beer was a complicated process. Some artisanal beers cost $10 a bottle, so there must be something inherently difficult about making it, right? I even used to work as a bartender at a microbrewery for about a year. The huge steel vats, pressurized tanks, pumps, and pipes seemed intimidating to say the least.

But then, at the beginning of this year, Costa Rica (and indeed the world) went into lockdown. I realized that there were a few things that needed to change. Our budget…


Turn your passion into your dream job in ecotourism

Photo of a Central American Spinner Dolphins, swimming underwater in clear blue ocean.
Photo of a Central American Spinner Dolphins, swimming underwater in clear blue ocean.
Central American Spinner Dolphins (image by the author).

Picture a tropical paradise. The sun is glinting off the water, and a cool ocean breeze is rushing past you. Enter thousands of spinner dolphins. Humpback whales jumping and lob-tailing. Enormous killer whales prowling the seas. Now imagine that you never have to go home.

When I first moved to Drake Bay in Costa Rica, I never imagined that I would end up making a living doing the thing I love most in the world. But almost eleven years into my tropical adventure, my travel business continues to provide me with new and thrilling experiences, sharing our local population of…

Gringo Curt

Writing from the jungle of Costa Rica about sustainability, travel, and nature. See http://www.gringocurt.com for my travel website.

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