Picture Diary – January and February Adventures

I woke up this morning and realized that I haven’t posted in a LONG time. I think this is another sign that Escazú is really starting to feel like home. We are still exploring and enjoying the country but at the same time are settling into routines. We have been fortunate enough to enjoy visits from some of our family members and will be hosting friends over the next month.

My dad visited at the end of January and we met in Monteverde. My dad was in Miami for work and figured since he was “in the neighborhood” he should just come to Costa Rica for a long weekend. Awesome effort, dad. Monteverde was a place we hadn’t yet explored and offered a whole new side of Costa Rica we hadn’t seen. It’s a cloud forest and is at a high elevation. I was so unprepared with my packing and was cold pretty much the whole time. It took me all three days to wrap my mind around the fact that we were in Costa Rica – in my mind Costa Rica only equals beaches. Not the case.

Over the course of the long weekend we did a lot of hiking, went on hanging bridges, did a night tour, climbed a ficus tree, and hung out at a herpetarium. We also went to the same restaurant 7 times in 3 days – it was that good. If you are ever in Monteverde, go to Orchid Coffee House (for every meal). Here are some highlights:

IMG_5503

Friday morning hike in the cloud forest

IMG_5498

Getting in touch with nature

IMG_5502

IMG_5525

Hanging bridges

IMG_5526

Bridge to nowhere

IMG_5556

Great visit

IMG_5516

Scorpion sighting on the night tour

IMG_5568

Snake friend (?) – face pretty much says it all.

IMG_5571

Lizard friend

IMG_5576

Ballsy hummingbirds

IMG_5496

Succulents at our airbnb

IMG_5545

IMG_5608

I climbed about 5 feet up but it was still pretty cool. This tree was hollowed out by strangler figs but it made it so it was like a huge, natural ladder. 

IMG_5610

My dad climbing up against my protests – he made it pretty high up.

IMG_5613

Em climbed to the top – I couldn’t watch

One of our friends from the Escazú area, Jason, was also in Monteverde that weekend so we met up with him on Sunday after my dad left for the airport. We hiked in the Cloud Forest Reserve – one of the more beautiful places I have ever been. The amount of greenery and biodiversity is overwhelming and hard to grasp – it’s stunning.

IMG_5623

Great view at one point in the hike. You can see why it’s called the cloud forest.

IMG_5633IMG_5634IMG_5637

IMG_5644

Hanging bridge in the reserve

IMG_5641

IMG_5652

One last stop at Orchid on the way out of town.

Just in case you haven’t had enough of Monteverde yet, we headed back there with Andy and Charlie a few weeks later. There is so much to do that we had a great but totally different experience. We stayed on the other side of town and did hanging bridges, went zip-lining, went to another herpetarium, played LOTS of cards, and went back to Orchid (again quite a few times). It was so fun showing them where we live. Special shoutout to Andy who, with the help of hiking poles (which I have now ordered for myself), hiked through the cloud forest only a few months after breaking another part of his hip. He was an inspiration throughout the trip.

IMG_5759

Half off sushi rolls during Charlie’s first night in Escazú

IMG_5770

Goofs in the elevator.

IMG_5771

Crew before we started our ziplining adventure.

IMG_5804

Living the dream

IMG_5818

Before we went tandem down the final, terrifyingly long zipline.

IMG_5819

Beautiful light at the end of ziplining.

IMG_5824

Breakfast at… Orchid

IMG_5851

Beer tasting

IMG_5866

Herpetarium friends

IMG_5862

Herpetarium friends

IMG_5869

Where else?

IMG_5849

Friends

IMG_5839

Symmetry

IMG_5830

Crew on some hanging bridges

IMG_5826

IMG_5872

Quick stop at the beach on the way back to Escazú

Other highlights over the past month or so including lots of hiking in the area in preparation for our March break trip to Guatemala. Looking forward to heading to the Lake Atitlán area with MC and Katy and doing an overnight volcano hike. Lots of pictures to come – don’t you worry.

Em and I found a great hiking app that allows you to follow trails other people have made. It gave us a little more confidence to do some hikes we’ve never done before. When we headed out Super Bowl Sunday morning we were glad NOT to know what we were getting ourselves into. It was super steep.

IMG_5701

Super Bowl Sunday hike up Pico Blanco

IMG_5699

With this little dude

IMG_5678

Beauty

IMG_5750IMG_5746IMG_5745

We also made this masterpiece for a Super Bowl party. It was SO good.

IMG_5751

 

We did a similar hike a few weekends later but instead of doing the super steep way did a longer, more manageable loop with some CDS folks. It was a perfect day.

IMG_5973

Pico Blanco Round 2

IMG_5974

Round 2 Crew

IMG_5951IMG_5949IMG_5969IMG_5963

IMG_5942

Parts of this reminded me of pine forests of New England – it’s really special to have little reminders of home.

Few other things to mention. The school is moving next year and therefore so are we. Not sure where exactly Em and I will move but all the teachers had the opportunity to go tour the new campus. Hardhats aren’t the most flattering but when you’re with these fools they look pretty good.

IMG_5442IMG_5448

We have also been spending plenty of time with friends. So happy for our friends who accepted jobs in Shanghai for next year. So sad to lose them but SO looking forward to the next 4 months of celebrating.

IMG_5417.JPG

We’ve made sure to get some day trips to the beach in as well.

IMG_5936IMG_5935IMG_6064IMG_6070IMG_6067I also had the opportunity to chaperone the 9th grade trip to Punta Mona (on the Caribbean side) and the Pacuare river. 3 days and 2 nights with 32 9th graders. We hiked on the Caribbean side and finished with 2 days of rafting one of the top 5 rafting rivers in the world.

IMG_5984

Hiking along the Caribbean coast

IMG_6046IMG_6025

We stayed along the river in a place that reminded me a lot of Wolfeboro – mostly because of the canvas tents.

IMG_6050

My tent for the night

IMG_6059IMG_6058

IMG_6061

Doesn’t get more beautiful than that.

While on the topic of Wolfeboro, I am so excited to announce that Em and I will be returning to NH for the summer as I accepted a job at Wolfeboro (AKA – Wolfeboro Camp School)  as Girls Campus Head. I have big shoes to fill and can’t wait to get started. I worked at Wolfeboro for 4 years (summers 2006-2009) and am so thrilled to spend the summer back with everyone on the shores of Rust Pond helping students reach their full potential. Additionally, look who my co-workers are:

Screen Shot 2016-02-28 at 7.05.51 PM.png

Doesn’t get much better than that. Lots to look forward to.

We also have lots of visitors in the next month – Jackie and Greg, MC and Katy, Tanya, the Regan-Loomis clan. Jump on this train and let’s find a time to hang down here in paradise!

Pura vida.

K

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s