Thursday, August 11, 2011

That's It. He's Gonna Die.

One of the most exciting parts of my trip to Costa Rica was the Crocodile Tour. It was towards the end of our trip and when our Director said we were taking another boat tour I know I wasn't the only one groaning. I figured we'd only see a crocodile from a distance and it'd splash into the water and be gone before we got a proper look at it. After being on our tour bus (nicknamed the "Black Stallion") for a while I was tired and thought this boat ride would be a chance for a nice long conscious nap. You know. The kind of nap where you're not actually asleep but you're so zoned out and not paying attention you might as well be. So I was not exactly jumping out of my seat to get off the bus and down to the boat.

At first, the trip started off something like this. "Look to your right. Do you remember what that bird is called?" And everyone would mumble back "Great white egret" or "It's an Anhinga." I was thrilled. Really.

Can't you tell? So thrilled. And then our guide says "Oh, wonderful! Here's one of the big boys. Up here to the left. The locals call him Osama." So of course everyone is peering eagerly off to the left as we keep getting closer... and closer... and closer. This is Osama the Crocodile.

Yeah. That's a 16 foot crocodile. Maybe... twenty feet from where our captain takes the boat. This croc is over sixty years old. And chubby. But what happened next is where the story gets interesting. Our captain José Gets.Out.Of.The.Boat. WHY WOULD YOU GET OUT OF THE BOAT!? There's a sixteen foot male crocodile nicknamed 'Osama' and a 9 foot female crocodile sitting right there! WHY?? Well, to feed the crocodile, of course! How silly of me.

Ok, yeah that's a different crocodile. Because he got out of the boat TWICE. He's insane. And then two more female swam up while he was feeding the female next to Osama and he was trapped. So he had to step over Osama and weave through the other three females to get back to the boat. I was pretty convinced the next picture I'd be taking was gonna go a little something like this:

Fortunately, José did in fact not get his arm bitten off. I still think he's insane. And I was pretty certain he was gonna die. I mean, I was hoping someone else knew how to drive a boat because I was convinced we were not gonna have a captain. I mean, really. What sort of person GETS.OUT.OF.THE.BOAT?? GET BACK IN THE BOAT! PLEASE! So in conclusion... Crocodiles are scary. In fact they are so scary, I think I might need entire tub of therapy frosting to get over this one. Yup. The entire tub.


Sunday, August 7, 2011

To Guanacaste and Back Again

So folks, it's been a while. Ok, ok. It's been almost a year. But can you blame a girl? It was my senior year at high school and I was busy with scholarships, and... and schoolwork!... and... and fun. Yeah, fun. Haha. And I moved too. I moved out of my parents' lovely home and am now living in a house they own right next to the campus my brothers' attended and I am now a student at. College! Eek!

Anyways... In July, my mom, grandma, and I traveled to Costa Rica as a sort of graduation present from my grandmother to me. It was incredible! I'd never been out of country before nor had I been to the ocean. Psh. Now I'm a world traveler. See?

That's me. On a zipline. Waaayyy up high in the trees. My mom and I went through Pura Aventura for our ziplining and I must say they were great. The guides were funny and really good at their jobs. They even took a few of us upside down on one of the lines. Now that's a little freaky.

For the actual tour itself though, we took Caravan's ten day tour. What a fabulous company. They had all the connections to get us into the coolest places and before the general public. Our tour director was amazing too. He knew we had to get up half an hour earlier on our first day if we even wanted a decent change at seeing the crater of the Poas Volcano.

Yeah. That's a volcano.

My only regret is that we didn't get much time to really experience day to day life. Sure, we saw cultural performances and met some of the Tico people but many days were spent on the bus looking out at the real Costa Rica or standing on the hotel balcony looking out over the city. I wanted to be out there. I wanted to really experience the people. You know what that means right? I'll just have to go back some day.

So look forward to some exciting, stupid, and funny stories of our travels in the next few weeks. And, as the Ticos say, ¡Pura Vida!