Costa Rica: The Story of Rico

Now, this is just a fun little story from Costa Rica I wanted to share with you.

The Resort

Our resort in Puntarenas featured nightly shows.  Between spectacular dance numbers, a small comedy troupe entertained the audience with humorous sketches and bits.

We met who we’d later come to call Rico on our first night, when he mimed a complex drum solo, complete with slapstick shenanigans.  This was one of the few acts I could fully enjoy because it had zero dialog.

We soon discovered he frequently had the word, “Rico” written in sharpie across his belly.  We were never quite sure why, though it did earn him our nickname.  He also wasn’t the only one; one of his stage partners often sported a shirt featuring the word “Tamarico.”

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2017

Nightly Shows

We also learned that these nightly shows finished with a focus on audience birthdays, where any celebrating a birthday could ascend the stage and receive their special happy birthday song.

Of course, Aaron was excited, knowing he’d have a chance on stage later that week (after all, we went to Costa Rica to celebrate his big milestone).

We talked about Rico’s latest antics daily.  Though most was lost in translation, we managed to extract just enough words from his acts to piece together a general gist.  Aaron took a liking to his comedic style (despite the limited understanding).

So when the big day came, in good, Aaron fashion, he chose to fully play up his five minutes.  He had me write “RICO” on his own belly, which he planned to reveal on stage (fortunately, I just happen to keep a sharpie in my purse).

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2017

But when the moment came, Rico wasn’t there.  Though Aaron was ecstatic at Tamarico’s head-thrown-back laughter, he was disappointed Rico couldn’t see it firsthand.

So I decided to share his pre-fame picture on Rico’s comedian Facebook page.  I accompanied it with this message:

We visited Costa Rica for my husband’s 40th birthday, and we stayed at the Doubletree. We had an absolute blast and looked forward to the shows there every night. And while we couldn’t understand most of what you said onstage, you gained a new fan with Aaron 🙂

¡Gracias para las risas!

I was sure he’d get a kick out of it.

But the next day came and went without any indication he noticed the post.  I knew he did shows late into the night, so I gave it time.  But I saw him add new posts to his page, and still nothing.  Perhaps I had overestimated his reaction.

Almost a week went by, and still I saw nothing.

And then, late the following Saturday, I got the notification that he “loved” my post and commented on it.  He then proceeded to share the post directly on his timeline – twice.  First, he did a straight share, accompanied with “something nice to share.”  He then screen-captured the picture, posting this:

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2017

See that translation?

Seeing that we had brought some real joy to this person half a world away was so incredibly gratifying.  I couldn’t stop smiling.

Who would have thought such a tiny act could make him so happy and, in turn, me?  It just goes to show that the smallest things really do matter most.  Happiness is contagious and strongest when given.

And all it took was a little bit of sharpie.

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