Friday, December 13, 2002

Costa Rica

In November 2002 we traveled with Anne-Marie and Rob to Costa Rica. At the beginning of the trip we traveled from San Jose up to the NorthEast part of Costa Rica to stay at the Samay Lodge right on the Atlantic Ocean. To get there we traveled by boat for 4 hours up river and through Nicaragua. The river was teaming with crocodiles and here is a siting of our first "big" crocodile. It made us all a little nervous of the boat we were in as it was merely a glorified canoe with a motor. Guess that shows how chicken we are as the local kids swim in the river with no quams! Our guide expressed amusement when we were horrified to see parents allowing their kids to swim in the river.

Here is Anne-Marie & Rob with their guide in a canoe ahead of us (we are in and around the Samay Lodge). Wade and I were canoeing with a crazy drunk tourist named Reinhardt, whom continually tried to tip our canoe. Wade was losing patience due to the imminent concern of crocodiles and finally removed the paddle from Reinhardt and gave it to me. Between paddling from the middle of the canoe and holding up the camera in case we did tip, it was not the tranquil trip we had imagined. At least Anne-Marie and Rob enjoyed the moment!

Here is Wade swinging through the forest like a monkey...kind of suiting I think. This is in the Monteverde Cloud Forest in central Costa Rica where we went zip lining for an afternoon. There were 14 different platforms spanning over 3 kms. The highest was 300 feet and the longest was 2,300 feet.

A quiet paddle on the Pacquere River a couple of hours outside of San Jose. Or maybe not! Everything was under control until we got stuck in a water hole which was supposed to be a fun way to get wet for a while until our guide couldn't get us out and started to panic. Our boat was spinning uncontrollably dunking each one of us under the water in a cyclical fashion. Luckily the other guides pulled their boats to the side to come to our aid. I ended up losing an oar and just about my contacts too! We found my oar down the river some time later. The rest of the trip was without incident, except when Anne-Marie catapulted out of the boat. Luckily Rob was able to haul her in before we hit the Class 4 rapids. It was an experience! Lesson learned...never go river rafting with people who cannot speak fluent English.

After white water rafting, canoeing, zip lining,trekking through the rainforest and cloudforest, horseback riding for 5 hours (never a good idea I must say), atv'ing, and caving (also never a good idea outside of North America, especially when you see the same caves on the TV show Worst Case Scenario a few months later) was finally time to relax at the Tabacon Hot Springs at Arenal Volcano. And was it worth it! This place was heaven. Can you not tell by the look on Wade and Rob's faces?