Although I haven’t written much I have at least been very consistent with a weekly response! My Musical recommendation for the day is Meet Me by the Water by Rachael Yamagata. (I would also like to give credit to Lizbie Harbison for the idea to use song titles for my blog titles...THANKS BIE!)
Well, I finally received my package and I realized why it was sent through UPS! I could barely carry the package although I did make it the 10 minute walk from school to home on Friday! Although the package was in Costa Rica on Monday I did not physically receive it until Friday! Luckily by Friday I had some clothes that my mom sent me and an awesome Frisbee that lights up! A bunch of friends from the CPI met up around 9:30 on Friday night to go to the bar. A group of 9 of us ended up meeting at the bar. With the entrance fee we received tickets for a free shot of tequila, vodka, or rum, which was pretty awesome! After a shot and a drink the dance floor began to get a bit more crowded. Luckily this bar played Costa Rican music (lots of salsa and samba). The live band started around 10:30 and I danced with friends from my program. I ran into my Tico uncle (I think that’s how he is related to my family) and he asked me to save him a dance. It was really fun but I was very upset that we didn’t dance with the locals. I woke up early Saturday morning to head to Arenal! After a very bumpy 4 hour ride we got to Arenal and were able to see the volcano right away. Sometimes people go all the way to Arenal and never even see the volcano because of the cloud cover but we really lucked out. We took a walk in the reserve around the volcano for about 2 hours before heading to Baldi, one of the hot springs in Arenal! I loved the water but the area with the hot springs was a bit touristy. I felt like I was in a water/theme park with different pools, a million tourists, wet bars, lots of restaurants, and even some water slides. The water slide was very fun but Baldi was not what I expected when I read “hot spring” on our itinerary. I had hoped for a more natural environment to swim in but luckily I got my “natural” fix on Sunday when we walked down 500 steps to see the giant waterfall in Arenal. The waterfall was magnificent and although the water was pretty cold you could practically swim next to it. The area to swim was an oasis surrounded by a thick jungle and I loveeeed it! We ended up taking a bus, boat, and another bus on the way back to Monteverde. The ride back took about 3 hours instead of the bumpy 4 on the way there (thank goodness). Although I was exhausted when I got home Sunday night the trip was well worth it. This week I am going to go Canyoning (repelling down a waterfall), take a cooking class, hopefully rally a group to go to the bar on Thursday for Samba night, and go to Manuel Antonio this weekend (by the beach!!!). I am very excited to relax and get some sun this weekend! I am starting to research some places that I want to trip. Although I love Monteverde and the simplicity of the natural environment that surrounds me on a daily basis, I haven’t been very pleased with the tourist activities that I have done. I think I am going to need to look off the beaten path in order to find activities that appeal to me. Luckily I have 5 months to explore Costa Rica and have plenty more to see/ do in Monteverde.
Things at home have calmed down a bit. The family often goes to pray at their grandfather’s grave but my host mom seems to be doing much better. This week I have class from 7-12:30 rather than 8-12 and another class from 1-2:30. Although I have to wake up an hour earlier I prefer this plan because it gives me more free time to explore in the afternoon. Tomorrow I am going to go into Santa Elena and walk to La Creativa (the school I will be teaching at starting August 11th). I’m going to try to blog more often! I write in my journal every day so its hard to feel motivated to then write in my blog! K that’s all!