September Highlights

Independence Day

Last Tuesday I had the day off from school in observance of Costa Rica’s Independence Day. Em was lucky enough to be able to take the day off (in place of Labor Day) so we had a relaxing morning of reading in bed and then prepared to join a group of CDS friends in La Sabana for an afternoon picnic. We made a pretty baller sangria and headed to the park way over prepared with food.

Preparing the sangria

It was a beautiful day of laughter, frisbee, and (perhaps too much?) sun.

Picnic Crew

Focusing on frisbee

Weekend in Arenal

We were lucky enough to spend this past weekend in the Northwestern part of the country near Arenal volcano. Perhaps the most exciting part of the trip was when Emily enjoyed her first iced coffee since we moved here (we hadn’t even left Escazú yet so we can’t technically count it as a top moment of the trip but it was still very thrilling).


We left early Saturday morning and spent one night in Arenal. We packed a lot in which made it feel much longer; once again the weekend felt like it lasted 4 days. Dogs are not allowed in national parks so we were fortunate enough to have Uncle Scott offer to hang out with Milo for the two days. Needless to say, Milo was very happy about the arrangement.

One happy dude

On Saturday we hiked in Arenal National Park with a great CDS crew.

The crew

It was really neat to hike through the lava fields. This volcano last erupted in 1968 and wiped out an entire side. The side that remained is now called La Fortuna (the fortunate). The trail wasn’t very long but the scenery was different every 10-20 minutes. Parts of the trail also looked over Lago Arenal which definitely made me miss the shores of Winnipesaukee and Danforth.

What a cutieSaturday hike  Starting out Pure beauty

Later that day we headed to Baldi Hot Springs for a Treat Yo Self Saturday. This place had about 15 different geothermal pools that went up to 109 degrees.

Hot springs at night

They also had water slides which Em and many others (not me) crushed. Here is the scariest slide at the park (from my “sitting on the sidelines/there is no way in hell I’m going on that” perspective).

Hell no

There were some pretty significant bruises and pulled backs from the speedy water sliding. Em’s neck still hurts (writing Tuesday night). You know you’re getting old when…

When we left after 4 hours of soaking I pretty much felt like this:


It was pretty perfect.

On Sunday we headed to the Hanging Bridges on the edge of Lago Arenal.

Lago Arenal


The walk itself was short (~2 miles) but there was so much to see – blue jean frogs, spider monkeys, sloths, mut muts, and more – that we were there for over 3 hours. At one point we watched spider monkeys flip in the trees for about 10 minutes – we were the only ones there and it was the coolest.

Cool mushrooms Lizard friend Mut Mut

There were 4-5 suspension bridges over the course of the walk. Some of them were over 40 m high and 80 m long.


I made sure I said my piece about why this was unsafe and why cables are not reliable and then took the plunge across the bridge.  Here I am before taking my first steps toward death.

Smell ya later

Paul was kind enough to jump up and down when I reached the middle of the bridge to really make me face my fear. Once I got over the initial terror it was a really neat experience and I actually even enjoyed it (go figure).

Crew on the bridge



Can you spot them?

Overall it was a great weekend. Thanks to Paul and Katie for showing us the ropes and putting up with our driving throughout the trip and to Uncle Scott for helping us have a “weekend away.”

We didn’t get to watch the Pats game (which is totally fine – I’m sad to say that jungle > Pats these days) but I did make sure to follow my fantasy team on the car ride home. Tony Romo AND Eddy Lacey suffered major injuries and I have them both so needless to say this is how I felt most of the way home:

The worst

Better luck next time.

Tonight (Tuesday) we discovered the Green Market in Ciudad Colon (a cute town about 25 minutes from where we live). It’s a farmers market that takes place at night. We bought some UNREAL goat cheese for 1500 colones (~$3) and had delicious food made on the spot. Needless to say it was a successful date night.

Market at night About to pound some cheese

Pura Vida.


PS – if you’re looking for a TV show to get into watch Narcos on Netflix. No seriously. Stop reading immediately and go watch the first episode. Seriously. Why are you still reading this? Go now.


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