Cuyahoga River

Cuyahoga River
Cuyahoga River in the Valley

Monday, January 20, 2014

Exploring Costa Rica

Home from Costa Rica after a relaxing vacation to celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary.
We were outdoors, even for meals, most of our days—hiking, sunbathing, swimming, or just taking in the scenery. The color of my skin shows it. The vacation came just in time to help me get well from the shingles, and I felt almost normal within two days of our arrival in the rejuvenating climate. Conditions were rugged on the trails and the roads going from place to place, but we were pampered with drivers picking us up, guides showing us the wildlife, spa hotels with great food and beautiful rooms and excellent service. It was relaxing even though we were up most mornings at six to eat breakfast so we could get on with the adventure of the day. During a night hike we saw viper snakes, several kinds of spiders including a tarantula, a scorpion, and a kinkajou. We saw many squirrel monkeys and white-faced monkeys and pacas right on the grounds of The Falls of Manuel Antonio. On our guided hikes we saw raccoons, their weird raccoon called a coatimundi, a wild boar, sloths, lizards, iguanas, crocodiles, blue morpho butterflies, and Costa Rican gray squirrels. We saw all kinds of birds, who were singing literally all night (also saw sleeping birds)--hummingbirds, parakeets, quetzels, turkey hawks, mockingbirds, egrets and herons, osprey and frigatebirds, a toucan, tanagers and the Montezuma Oropendola. On our bumpy dirt-road drives, we passed skinny-looking cattle, horses, and unchained and unfenced dogs, as well as mostly fenced-in houses. The landscape was filled with shimmering green hills, baron volcanos, strangler figs, lots of coconut trees, palm trees, huge ferns, waterfalls, and lots of flowers we don't get at home, like birds of paradise.
Paul and I can recommend the company that put together the package--Latin Destinations--and the outfit that coordinated all our ground travel--Swiss Travel. But Delta Airlines' delays in both directions for mechanical issues and our luggage being MIA for three days caused some unnecessary stress that could have been avoided if the airlines was better equipped to handle the out-of-ordinary.

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