Tuesday, September 06, 2005

From Nicaragua to Costa Rica

Amie chimes in....

So, what have we been up to
recently... Quite a lot. I'm not sure when Jordan
updated last, but it may have been from Nicaragua.
While we've been smooth sailing for a while, we hit a
major bump in the road last week. My good camera
broke sometime in Nicaragua or Honduras. I realized
the problem in Granada, Nicaragua and my heart
literally broke. My camera is my baby on these trips.
It is an extension of me in a way. I'm not sure how
far back the problem started, but I'm hoping that I
didn't lose too many important images. To ease my
broken heart, we tried to do something fun and
exciting. We did! We did a zip line tour on the
Volcano Mombacho outside Granada. We sailed through
the air at the tree tops accross the amazing foliage.
We even did a few while upside down just for the super
thrill of it. I am in love with canopy tours now!
Give me a zip line among the tree tops and monkeys and
I'm happy! Literally, to cheer me up after the camera
break realization, it had to be good! We then went up
to the crater of the volcano and hiked around it in
the dense cloud forest. It was just beautiful! And,
the smoke coming from inside the volcano reminds you
that you're on a volcano and not just a mountain!
From the top, you can see down into the lake below
(Lago de Nicaragua) to where dozens of small islands
were formed when molten lava flooded down into the
river. It was absolutely gorgeous and the perfect
antidote to my camera blues.

We ended up leaving Nicaragua early the next day to head for San Jose,
Costa Rica, which is the capital. By finding some
info on the Internet and contacting a few
photographers in Costa Rica that we found on line, I
got a few recommendations of repair shops. There were
no Hasselblad certified shops anywhere in central
America. The closest was Brazil. But, I'm here! So,
we came to San Jose a week ago and I found a shop that
thought they could fix it. Luckily, in these
countries, people really know how to fix things, no
matter what, in most cases. They had a technician who
has been working on these kinds of cameras for years
and he was actually able to fix it for me!!!! So, we
left it with them for a week and hoped for the best.
In the meantime, we headed to the Pacific coast to
Playa Tamarindo to drown my sorrows and wait to hear
some good news. We spent a few days there chilling on
the beach and enjoying the miraculous wet-season
sunsets. Incredible really.

The other fun thing to do was boogie board on the wonderfully rough surf.
The coast down here is a rough Pacific one hosting
black rocky and forested coastlines. Waves crash into
the rocks with amazing power! After a few days there,
we went south to Montezuma, another beach village that
was much smaller and more natural. It was like living
in the jungle with the beach in front of you! The
beaches were gorgeous and the river running into it
has amazing waterfalls and trails. We hiked in the
jungle nearby and along the beaches going from one
amazing cove to another. We took a boat trip to Isla
Tortuga one day on which we saw 2 whales, a huge
mother and her, maybe 2 week old, baby. They were
such an amazing site and only about 50 feet away from
our boat. The mother whale itself was probably about
40-50 feet long! Awe inspiring.

We also had an adorable sea turtle swim along with us for a while.
While on the island, we enjoyed the white sand beach
and calmer surf. Idyllic. Our hotel had a veranda
directly facing the ocean, so we spent a few sunsets
gazing at the water crashing into the rocks below as
the sun made its escape. The good news came when I
called the camera shop yesterday and they said that
their tech was able to fix it and I could come and get
it today! Hence, we dragged our begrudging asses back
onto the buses, ferries, more buses and then taxis to
get back here to San Jose today. I now have been
reunited with my camera/baby and, as Jordan said, we
are a family again! hahaha! So, camera crisis dealt
with, we will head on in Costa Rica to continue to
enjoy the amazing beauty it bestows. What Costa Rica
lacks culturally, it certainly makes up for in natural
beauty. We have a lot to look forward to. Then, it's
on to Panama!