I would not be familiar with mate if it were not for my older son who lives in Buenos Aires. Mate is similar to tea. People put the leaves in a gourd container, as you see here, then pour in hot water and let it seep. The metal straw that you see is closed on the other end with little holes in it so that the liquid passes through the straw but the mate leaves do not.
In Buenos Aires, it is common to see people going to work with a thermos of hot water and their mate leaves, gourd and straw. They even make little leather backpack for carrying mate and thermoses.
Although many of the shopkeepers and restaurateurs in Tamarindo are European, there are also Argentines in Tamarindo, including the owner of a computer service store and the gentleman who handles many of the arrangements for the property management company that manages our two condominiums. I sometimes wonder how it is that people who grow up in one country end up living and working in a distant place. My own son has done that, as he is quite at home in Buenos Aires with several businesses there, after growing up in Arizona. When he visits Costa Rica, the people there think he is Argentine because he speaks Spanish with a Buenos Aires accent.
On our Viva la Voyage travel photo site this week we are showing the Dalmatian Coast of Croatia. If you have not been there, please check out the our website this week. You are in for a treat.