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Postcard from Christie Rampone in San Jose, Costa Rica

Christie Rampone

Every so often when the U.S. Women’s National Team plays out of the country, a player will write an e-postcard, filling in the fans back home on the happenings of the team, off field activities, and anything else on their mind.  Today, the former Christie Pearce shares her thoughts on non-cooperative modems, spending Valentine’s Day on the road and a whole different type of fireworks.

Hello from sunny, hot San Jose, Costa Rica. If you are from Central New Jersey like me, you can probably appreciate the 60-degree bump in the temperature I got to experience coming down to Central America. One thing the U.S. Women’s National Team found out quickly is that no matter how much sunscreen we lather on, you can’t hide from the sun here. Several of the more fair skinned players (including North Jersey’s Heather O’Reilly, my roomie on this trip), are a little on the pink side right now.

We have no complaints however, as we just got back from China (it seems like only a few days ago…wait a minute…it was only a few days ago), and we only saw the sun there for a total of 37 minutes during the 11 days.

The second day here in Costa Rica was Valentine’s Day. Since I knew I wasn’t going to be with my husband on Valentine’s Day, I set up a little surprise for him before I left. He was in the car ready to take me to the airport, when I pulled the ‘ole “honey, I forgot something, I’ll be right back.”  Then I sprinted into the house, grabbed the gifts and chocolate I had hidden (and hidden well, I might add) and put them on the dresser in our bedroom so he would get them when he came back home. You have to be creative in your marriage when you are on the road as much as the U.S. Women’s National Team.

Here’s a tip on Internet access in Costa Rica: AOL does not work on Apple computers here. For some reason, the software is not reading my modem (and the rest of the players’ who have IBooks) and I have not been able to email anyone. So, sorry to my friends and family and please be patient. I will soon beg a teammate to borrow their computer and catch up.

If you are reading this on Tuesday, Feb. 17, Shannon Boxx and I are on an adventure. It is our first full day off in Costa Rica and all the players are going on some sort of excursion, from white water rafting to a tram over the rain forest. Shannon and I are doing something a little different. We will be traveling a few hours from San Jose to the Volcano Arenal and the hot springs located at its base, which is the closest you can get to the volcano, as it just happens to be active. Apparently, it’s beautiful at night when it spews colorful lava, so you can’t get too close.  We have been guaranteed to see some monkeys too.

If for some reason you don’t see Shannon and I in the game reports on once we start player the matches, you’ll know that we got swallowed by the volcano.

We still have over a week until our first game, so while we have been training hard, we are going to try to enjoy beautiful Costa Rica as much as possible before we buckle down for five matches in 10 days.  My husband Chris’ birthday is on Feb. 23, two days before Olympic qualifying starts. Once again, I will not be there, but as you can tell by my Valentine’s Day surprise, something could be in the works for his birthday. Honey, don’t bother looking, you won’t find anything.

That’s all for now.
Take Care, and for all those in Jersey, stay warm.

Christie Rampone