My name is Fenja, and I've just started learning Esperanto. Wish me luck! :)
Also, there is a lot of "kara" in the lessons. Is that a thing? Is it common to call people "kara," (because that would be cute) or was it just a choice made by the lesson developers?
Hello there, I saw you had added me and I'm glad you made an introduction on the forums.
Saluton kaj bonvenon al Duolingo!
As for kara, I've heard Esperanto speakers refer to each other as "Kara" it's less intimate in my knowledge in Esperanto. More like " Dear Friend" but it can also mean "Dear" like sweetheart. Either way it's an endearment. :P
Yes, I like the expression. It's like calling children who are not your own "mija" or "mijo" (mi hija, mi hijo). Having a go-to word that let's you talk to others is good. Now, I suppose if it's especially intimate, someone may think you strange for using it--but since the Esperanto community is all about the love, I'm thinking it's a perfectly fine expression. (I am level 3 or so in Esperanto on my account without the 1. I am enjoying it!) Peace!