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Twenty years ago I was substantially more tranquilo in the act of smuggling than I would be today. With nary an afterthought as to the possible consequences, I waltzed unscathed through immigration and customs at Juan Santamaria International Airport with a dozen ‘pups’ of banana plants, artfully ensconced among the colorful clothing in my 7 year-old daughter’s suitcase. Jefferson’s point of view may not have been foremost in my mind, but I was definitely on the road to ‘going bananas.’
Individuals with a firmer grasp of reality might have taken the time to notice that there is probably a reason why the large banana producing areas in Costa Rica are not located in Guanacaste. Six months of “the seasonal equivalent of the Sahara” puts the broad, delicate leaves through the proverbial shredder and the water-filled pseudostem, what we think of as the trunk, takes a severe hit due to evaporative losses in our verano. And that’s part of how I evolved into a smuggler.