A long day ashore
Trip Start Feb 04, 2008
20Trip End Feb 21, 2008
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Today I went ziplining through the rainforest canopy in Costa Rica. I was scared because I was an extra 3 feet above the normal (small) platform. The tallest platform was 80 feet above the forest floor. I went really fast and I had lots of fun!
The Original Canopy Tour
I think we were all a little nervous at first.
A one-hour bumpy back road Costa Rican bus ride though small villages, an orientation about the safety equipment, and then with our equipment strapped around our waists, we walked to the first platform
Harnessed, helmeted, and gloved, we were securely cramponed to cables that spanned Mahogany trees. With the help of gravity and eco-tour guides, we zipped through the forest on a predetermined path to walkways around the trees that were less than eighteen inches wide and suspended 60 to 80 feet from the ground. A bunch of us crowded on the platform before the next descent.
Max was a champ. He didn't like being lifted up to the cables, which meant his feet were way off the platform. But he became a full fledged zipper. That is in spite of an adult who panicked during the first acrobatic feat. She was quickly whisked away with an eco-guide (in tandem) to the last platform.
Kim smiled during most of the aerial exploration.
While Allen, Kim, and Max were celebrating Valentine's Day zipping through the treetops, Keith and Rie traveled by bus, train, boat, and bus. During our bus ride to the train (an old one now used for sight seeing), the guide, Wilhelm, presented a very good review of Costa Rican history. The train traveled through lovely countryside including large cantaloupe fields. Back on the bus, our next stop was for refreshments including Imperial, the local beer, and a boat ride through yet another mangrove forest. Yellow crested night herons, scarlet macaws, and crocodiles were the highlights of the trip. The last bus ride was back to the ship and a reunion with the Shains
At last we are in a port long enough to spend local money, eat local food, and walk around the town on our own. After the excitement of ziplines through the canopy in the morning, we went back to the ship briefly to refuel (Max set a new record for number of days in a row eating pizza--9!) and wait for Mom and Dad to get back from their morning tour.
Once we met up with them at the end of the pier, we walked along the strip of vendors by the beach for a little bit, and then Allen got directions to the town center. Our goals were a supermercado and replacement flip-flops for Max, who misplaced his old ones on the ship a few days ago. We scored on both counts. As usual, we particularly enjoyed the supermarket. Max was taken by the unfamiliar look of the familiar cereals, and we acquired supplies for our evening in-cabin cocktail hour.
We walked back toward the touristo part of town for a late lunch, because of course by then Mom and Dad were starving and we were all melting in the heat. The place we chose was open with a big thatched roof. The shrimp (both breaded and in garlic butter), rice, beans, and fried plantains were all very tasty and a welcome change from the ship's dining room (which really is like eating at the same restaurant every night). The Imperials (Costa Rican beer) were refreshing as well.
We walked back into the town, along the littered beach, and browsed the strip of craft booths briefly before returning to the ship for Valentine's Day dinner (and the oh-so-romantic NyQuil Allen was sweet enough to procure for me).