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Entries about jungle

Wet Hot American Summer

Settling into a routine of sorts

I've been trying to get these out every other day, it seemed to work, until I hit a day so devastating in it's blandness that I have absolutely nothing to say about it.

It was the rain. The bloody RAIN.

Look, I know it's a rain forest blah blah blah, but this was rain like I've never seen for the whole day. It didn't let up at all. I hear that it's been raining in the UK and I don't know how as I just assumed all the rain in the whole World had just dropped on me. In 2016 I drove from Orlando International to our house in some pretty mental rain, but this was worse and lasted for 14 hours. I had to put my earphones in so I could hear the TV on my laptop the rain was so loud!


So yeah, nothing going on that day.

Other than that, I seem to have hit a stride. Wake up, usually in some small amount of pain from my back. Move around a bit until that feels OK, go grab a pastry and coffee or breakfast then find something to do for the day.

Wednesday I went to find some sloths. There are a few 'Sloth Trails' around here. Essentially someone owns a stretch of jungle with sloths inside and has fenced it off so you have to pay to go in and spend hours searching for small, tree coloured mammals that cling to branches and don't move. It was hard going at first, I hadn't paid extra for a guide as it was pretty much the same price as 3 days accommodation, or 30 beers. I figured I could find them on my own. I was wrong.

Sloth are stupidly hard to spot!

I was having a pretty fine time though, just wandering around a very serene jungle only a few hundred meters away from town, checking out all the birds and frogs, of which there were many and far easier to find. It was at this point I started a kind of animal spotting barter system.

I had found a bush filled with hummingbirds. It was pretty great, I've never seen a real hummingbird before and they are amazing. They fly past you like the air is vibrating around you. It's an experience. I then walked past a group with a guide and told them what I had found, they then told me where a sloth was. I then told the next group where that sloth was to be told where another was and so on.


On the way back to the house, my Mum essentially butt dialed my sister and I so we all caught up, which was very nice. I hadn't realised how much I was missing talking back home.

I stopped off at a Soda place for a cheap but bloody nice dinner and that was pretty much me done for the day.

less than £3 for chicken, rice and beans, a coffee and fruit juice (tamarind) can't be bad!

Yesterday started very similarly, but I did a tour up to the volcano in the afternoon.

Now, Costa Rican's have a motto, 'Pura Vida', which translates literally to pure life, but in reality is more of a feeling, a way of life, but also the reason that no one is ever on time, you just have to roll with it. Pura Vida was likely the reason that my tour was an hour late picking me up, but also why it was so good. Everyone I've met here is great.

Volcano views

We started with a long hike up the volcano as our guide Eric gave us loads of information about the big eruption of 1968 and the wildlife that now lives around there. We walked a big loop around the area and down through a rainforest where we saw pretty much nothing until we stopped for coffee and saw this little guy:


Finally we took a trip down to one of the many hot springs in the area where I was able to give my back a nice deserved soak while drinking loads of local rum. The whole tour was fantastic, really worth the 30 or so quid.

There are loads of hot springs here attached to hotels, some costing up to $80!! There's also a natural little hot spring river. This was somewhere in the middle

Returning back to the house, I made some dinner and was invited to join my hosts for some drinks. And drink we did. All night. It was a great night but I'm feeling it this morning, luckily though, the weather is beautiful today, which makes it better as I think we're going off on another hike!

Posted by cblanc102 14:48 Archived in Costa Rica Tagged animals birds food jungle costa_rica friendship south_america central_america latin_america solo_travel Comments (0)

Jungle Love Pt 2 - Night Time Loving

What a difference a day makes

I was talking with Mum this morning about how this trip so far has been one good day followed by one bad day, then repeat. I said how it would be nice to have two good days in a row, but what I didn't say (or probably need to say) was how negatively it has been affecting me.

I know that this is what I've chosen to do for the next 6 months, I didn't expect it to all be plain sailing, in fact sometimes the issues just add to the excitement, at least make you realise that you're doing something different. But bloody hell this week has been one thing after another all underlined by my being in constant pain, sometimes excruciatingly so. It's bad enough when things go wrong, but when things go wrong but you can't stand up, then it's more of a deal.

My new room. Big bed, no kids

Yesterday was a good day. Even though I had some fairly bad pains in my back, I left the hostel I was staying at and lugged by stuff half a mile to the place I'd be staying at for the next 6 days (hopefully). It was, and is, lovely. A little out of town, I'm essentially staying in a spare room in someone's house. They have a room with 2 bunk beds where one guy is currently staying and a room with a double bed that I'm renting. There's a lovely garden that sees a greater variety of birds than I think I've seen in my life with a view of the volcano 5 miles away. There's a nice kitchen and a little shop 10 meters across the road to buy my food to cook on the cheap. They also have the biggest bananas there I think I've ever seen! And I can sit on the patio at night listening to all the animals, drink my lovely Costa Rican coffee (better than Costa coffee, they should change their name) and chill out before I go to bed. As I am now. It was a good day.

I know I'm not a big fruit person, but bloody hell!!

Today was better.

When I woke up this morning, my host Bernie told me that they have a friend who's a physiotherapist and would I like her to come take a look at my back? Ummm Yes Please!

She would be around later, so I thought I'd take a walk up the road the meantime to see what was about, get a sense of some of the available tours and get some better views of the volcano. I was lucky that the clouds cleared for me a bit as well, apparently they haven't been able to see the top for weeks until yesterday and it was only visible today for around 20 mins.

Me in my swanky hat
The Graveyards here are like cubist art installations!

When I returned, Grace the physio arrived. She's an Australian woman who's been living here for about 10 years, is both a physiotherapist and tour guide and pretty bloody great. She went through some exercises with me to ascertain mobility, then gave me a massage before finally taping me up with the sports tape stuff.

And she wouldn't take a penny for it, told me she was just doing it as a friend (we met an hour ago) and that I should spend the money on a tour or something, which I shall. It's too early really to know how well it's worked, as my back seems to be at it's worst in the mornings, but I have not had any twinges in it at all since she left and that hasn't happened in a week. Fingers crossed.

For an update, as it is now tomorrow, the back is much better but not 100%, it hurt a little getting up this morning and I felt a slight twinge here and there, but still lots better than it was

Around 4pm, Bernie asked if I had plans for this evening and when I told him I didn't he asked If I wanted to join them on a tour through the jungle at night they were going out to. Of course I did want to join them. I'm in Costa Rica!

Traipsing through the rain forest at night is an experience in itself. Very dark (it's night), sometimes very wet (duh.. "rain" forest) and filled with the noise of countless different creatures, some of the highlights were poison dart frogs, lots of bats and a weird spider which will now be the only creature I call a daddy long legs. It was a great night.

Some rain forest at night pics
Giant toad
Some weird white millipede
Spot the frog!
Tiny lizard
The DADDY of Daddy Long Legs!
Poison Dart Frog ready for his close up

We returned back to the house and Bernie's girlfriend had cooked a couple of pizzas and they asked me to join them. I popped over the road and bought us a few beers and we spent the rest of the evening talking about anything and everything.

I can't stress how much these past two days have helped. I even think I've worked out a plan of where I'm heading next (South to thicker, hotter, wilder jungle) my head feels clearer and my back feels better. Tomorrow I go find sloths.

Actually, are those giant bananas plantains? they go on about them here. I think I had one for lunch yesterday.

Posted by cblanc102 05:29 Archived in Costa Rica Tagged animals birds wildlife jungle costa_rica south_america central_america latin_america mosquitoes solo_travel Comments (0)

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