Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Costa Rica: The Start of my Mini-Memoir

We were a bit delayed on Friday evening. First, our flight couldn't depart because we had to wait for all the food to arrive. (It wasn't worth the wait, I'm sorry to say.) Then, once we were at our cruising altitude, the captain announced that the flight would take just a bit longer because the headwinds off the nose were close to 200 knots! This made for a slightly bumpy trip and there were perhaps 30 minutes of the almost six hour flight during which the seat belt sign was off.

Everything turned around, however, the next morning. Our flight to Drake Bay was uneventful and the views were wonderful. I had forgotten from our last visit to Costa Rica, just how mountainous parts of the the country are.

We chose to visit the Osa Peninsula because it's supposed to be one of the most biologically diverse places on Earth. With that in mind, it seemed only appropriate that we stay at an eco-lodge. Here's our children's room, nestled into the jungle hillside. Can't see it? Well, look for the teeny-tiny brown A-frame at the top of the hill. Yep, that's it. It was almost perfect .... it would have been perfect if I didn't have to climb 75 steps to get there. (Our room was just next door, but it's blocked here by foliage.)

Every morning, we had spectacular views of the bay and the surrounding jungle. You're up early here, usually by 5:30 because the birds -- particularly the parrots and the wrens -- start singing and squawking then. Doesn't it look like a movie set?

The inn didn't have air-conditioning (we knew that going in, but still a bit of a bummer with 95% humidity!) so, instead of windows, the front and sides of the room were framed with screens. The ceiling fan helped pull in whatever breezes there were. And, when it was just too much or when we were pooped out from our excursions, we opted for the siesta plan using hammocks on the porch.

Meals were served and prepared under the roof of an open -air pavilion. We reveled in the skill of the chef who fixed such amazing food despite white-faced monkeys who would sometimes try to steal from the larder. Breakfast offered a wide variety of choices including some local favorites, like brown pancakes topped with caramel, sour cream and nuts. For those at the inn during the day, lunch often featured produce from the owner's organic farm -- oh, the most delicious tomatoes EVER! Dinner was a family affair; all the guests joined together at the three tables and ate their meal starting at 7 pm. By then, the sun was down and the locusts were singing us a serenade. And no, the mosquitos weren't bad at all. I think a combination of the time of year and the resident bats kept the mosquitos in check. And, it was fun when the electricity went out at night and we ate by the light of the flashlights attached to our keys -- a necessity to see the stairs in the dark!

Yes, for those with an adventurous spirit, our location was fabulous. We were thrilled. Next up: some of our adventures.


Sue Reno said...

Beautiful pictures, sounds like an ideal trip, thanks for sharing.

Natalya Aikens said...

how fabulous! next time i'm stowing away in your luggage!

Kristin L said...

Looks wonderful. I'm cramming in with Natalya!