Thursday, July 12, 2007

Costa Rica

Back in March of this year, we took the most amazing trip to Costa Rica. It was my second trip there, and I've vowed to return every year for the rest of my life (unless I go somewhere else). We stayed at the Punta Marenco Lodge, which is on a nature preserve near Drake Bay and right outside Corcovado National Park. We slept in a screened cabin that had electricity for only two hours a day. The trade-off for our somewhat rustic accomodations, was waking up to views of the ocean beyond the forest below us (we were on a hill) and the sound of howler monkeys and macaws. National Geographic has called the area the "the most biologically intense place on earth," and they're not kidding. We sat on our porch in the late afternoons and watched as an endless number of beautifully-colored birds swooped down into the trees below us, we went out on a boat ride and saw dozens of dolphins leaping out of the water just a stone's throw away from us (we didn't throw any stones), we went canoeing on the Rio Claro (transl.: Clear River) and were treated to a large family of spider monkeys swinging from tree to tree, we took a stroll down the beach and came upon eight or ten macaws, large tropical parrots with brilliant plumage, frolicking in the palm trees (macaws mate for life and apparently squabble the whole time - just like people, except people don't always stay together). The most amazing experience, however, was coming upon a baby sloth on a hiking trail. He looked up at us, smiled (I swear) and went back to sleep. Sloths live and sleep on trees and only come down once a week to poop, so this was an extremely rare sight. We dubbed the little guy "Paquito". And, I don't want this to be one of "those" sites, but just once, vacation pictures:

(Arrival at Punta Marenco)

(The view from our cabin porch)
(A waterfall on a trail off Rio Claro)
(Paquito!) I encourage anyone with the slightest bit of adventure in them to go. I can stand the drudgery of everyday life a lot better knowing that this place exists.

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