Weeks 26-27 Costa Rica Part 1

 Our visit to Costa Rica didn’t get off to a good start, Carol’s bag didn’t arrive at San Jose airport. We subsequently found out that it had gone to Caracas Venezuela. We caught an Uber to our Air BnB at $20 , the taxis quoted $90. The city was nothing to write home about although it was nice to have WiFi and shops to buy things. We had our first occasion when we felt threatened , we walked to the bus station to book our ticket and suddenly we found ourselves in a street where two guys were comatose on the pavement.. We were vulnerable and these guys fixed us with a stare like  a predator eyeing up prey. On the way back we came across a crippled man being severely beaten with shrieking girls around.

We took the bus to La Fortuna , a 5 hour journey with the road winding its way up narrow roads and stopping to pick up and let down locals until it was  standing room only . They were paying with cash and I’m sure this was going straight into the conductor’s pocket. The scenery was lush and green with cattle grazing , rather like Nottingham Road.. From our Air BnB we walked to a waterfall, we had to drop down 500 meters and then back up again to view it. Unfortunately the weather socked in with rain and we were unable to view the Arenal  volcano, which is active. We saw a sloth up a tree but the weather continued bad. La Fortuna is a town serving tourists and their needs, travel agents, restaurants, hotels and not much else.

We took a bus then a small ferry across a lake and the another bus ride along beautiful winding dirt roads to Monteverde. Now I felt that the Costa Rica visit had at last begun. we met two German girls and a Greek Cypriot family based in UK , grandfather, grandmother , daughter and daughter travelling through the country. I find many travellers inspirational , old people , lone females , people coming on short trips , people coming on long trips. On the bus were 14 women and 4 men , another sign that women are more adventurous than men. Monteverde is another town taken up solely with tourism., hiking , birding and activities connected with action.

I took a walk in the cloud forest with a guide , a very knowledgeable guy and saw birds, frogs and the environment. Afterwards I hiked around the reserve in increasing wind. This is an interesting town weather wise, windy , cold , misty, rain and sunshine in equal portions.

One evening we went on a night walk with a guide and he found for us tarantulas, snakes, frogs, a sloth and sleeping toucan. We also took the opportunity to do a couple of strenuous hikes to view points and see a hollow tree which had literally had its life strangled out of it. Guys climbed up through the centre of the tree to the top. So our next trip would be down to the coast.

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