Tuesday, July 11, 2006

back to the beach

Hola amigos!

Let me tell you, I am mad this computer has too short of an attention span for me to post pictures, cause I have some fun ones! Anyhow here is the weekend update. On Saturday, Aarti and I took the bus to Liberia. From there we EVENTUALLY contacted a hotel with a correct phone number in our guide book which took some time given the pay phone, wrong number, phone card in spanish complications. The park is really remote and so are the hotels near it; thus we had to get them to come and get us because no buses came. So Oscar picked us up in Liberia and it was a bumpy hour long 4WD ride to the hotel. Oh this is great: 4 by 4s in Spanish are called "cuatro para cuatros." Anyway the hotel was very basic but nice because it{s a small, family owned joint and they are so helpful in making plans, asking you what time your meals are and all that. We had dinner there and breakfast the next morning (amazing food and so much fresh fruits and veggies, mom!) and then a driver took us to the entrance of the Rincon de la Vieja park. Here is an educational note: rincon in Spanish is a faraway place, and vieja is old woman. The legend is that 2 indigenous tribes lived there but were enemies, and the son of one and daughter of the other chief fell in love. Sort oflike Romeo and Juliet. Well the father of "Juliet" didn{t like that and pushed "Romeo" into the volcano. Then Juliet ran off into the forest to live alone, but people searched her out because she had healing powers, and the hot springs have something to do with that. Anyway that{s how the park got its name.

We went for a hike and this place reminded me a little of Yellowstone. First we saw "fumaroles" which is this cold water that bubbles from some sort of gases coming up from the ground. Then a waterfall. But we ended our hike at the hot springs which were amazing. A river ran right by them which had icy water but the hot springs were really comfortable, a perfect temperature. I thought they were heated by the volcanic activity, which seemed sort of alarming (remember that silly volcano movie a few years ago with the hot tub?) Well I guess the water is actually rain water that seeps through the rock which makes it really clean, and it is warmed up by some sort of geothermal heating but I don{t know the details. Anyway we soaked in the water for quite a while and ate our sack lunches provided by the hotel, did some sunbathing, and headed back. Aarti had to leave pretty soon after that since she had classes Monday morning, but I stayed another night. I met a really nice couple from the Netherlands that was in the room next door and we chatted for quite awhile after dinner Sunday night.

Monday morning, I had wanted to go on a horseback ride to the crater of the volcano but the weather was not good and it had rained a ton the night before so no guides would take me. So I hung out at the place for several hours and then got a ride back to Liberia, to take the bus back to Playa Flamingo. This was probably my most uncomfortable public bus yet because it was so HOT (no air conditioning) and it just had plastic seats instead of the cushy ones I{d had before. Not fun for almost 4 hours! anyway I got back to Playa Flamingo and decided to spend the night in the Mariner Inn, the cheapest place around. This morning I decided to spend the next 2nights there too, when they said they{d do my laundry it was a done deal! then Thursday will take the private bus to San Jose, spend the night there and fly out Friday. I want to go snorkeling this week and just spend time on the beach! I thought about taking a surfing lesson but it sounds like the type of thing where you have to do it several times to know what you{re doing...sort of like snowboarding I bet. There is a sunset boat ride here that does snorkeling too so I think I{ll sign up for that. I have mixed feelings about coming home but last ngiht I dreamed about playing poker! Anyway my computer time is almost up so I will talk to you all later!


Anonymous said...

It sounds like you've had a great time! While I'm sorry that you have to come back, it'll be a million times easier for me to visit you when you're in Colorado instead of Costa Rica! Missed seeing you when I was up there. Love, Becca

Anonymous said...

i was a little behind on my blog reading, you answered my questions in my e-mail. sounds like you've got it all figured out. love,mom

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