Monteverde: A Continued Review

Trip Start Jun 26, 2006
Trip End Aug 14, 2008

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Flag of Costa Rica  ,
Tuesday, June 19, 2007

As I was not able to finish my glowing appraisal of Monteverde, I now present you with Part II:
What to do:
Bar y Disco Amigos: Up to national standards as far as disco/bars go and a constant source of entertainment for the locals.
We went two nights. The first night, a band was playing so we had to pay the cover. Our 20 minute visit was punctuated by a drunk accosting us and asking for a dance. After he smashed his beer bottle on the dance floor, we left. We were wary of returning the second night, but my friend that lives in MV assured us that the occurrence was rare and that he, as a male, would keep the drunks at bay.
At first, there was a mix of cumbia, meringue, and other typical dance music. I, being who I am, was quite content to watch my companions twirling and spinning away. However, when the gradual trickle of foreigners had filled up a good portion of the bar, the music changed to a random selection of English reggae-tone.
Rhetorical question: If the music is dirty, how are people going to dance? The foreigners, the majority looked like college students on summer vacation, infused the dance floor, and bumping and grinding was not the worst of it.
If I was a local and I was in search of nightly entertainment, I'd make a beeline for Amigos. Not to bash the tourists, since they were obviously enjoying making complete fools of themselves, but all I'm saying is that there's a reason I don't dance. IT'S BECAUSE I CAN'T. And I am properly ashamed of this fact and don't go galloping around in foreign countries making a show of myself. It's not surprising that many people think Americans (USA) are nutcases. There is something called responsible tourism and that was definitely NOT it.
And as a final note on this subject, reggae-tone is complete trash. The lyrics are demeaning to the development of society and I could feel my brain leaking out of my ears.
Free Hummingbird Gallery: A trick to get you to walk up to the gift shop. The gallery was nothing more than a normal sized patio outside a gift shop at the entrance of the Monteverde Reserve. However, there were more hummingbirds that I've seen in my LIFE. Interesting trivia about hummingbirds: They fly straight into glass (windows, glass doors, etc) and knock themselves out. Apparently since they zip around so fast, they fail to notice it. We discussed the possibilities of a hummingbird zooming into a person so fast that they impaled someone with their beaks. Would the hummingbird get knocked out? Would it's wings continue to flap? After several more near-impalements (they flew dangerously close), we decided to end this brush with danger.
Bat Museum : Murciélagos is bat in Spanish, in case you were wondering. The building hosted a number of other museums and a chocolate shop which is MOST unfortunately closed on Sundays. We only saw the bat cave. The main room was quite small but held a wealth of fascinating information about bats. I learned a lot of things that are not impedimental to my survival. But I also learned that bats control the insect population and for that, I can see how the little things might be cute.
The "bat cave" was fun. Unlike hummingbirds, they don't bump into things due to their ultrasonic senses. All the same, I was glad for the glass partition.
Outside, we saw the world's smallest hummingbird. I was hard to capture it on photo. And we saw a butterfly with transparent wings. Refer to photos.
Getting there: We were in a car, but I can't imagine the insanity of going up the mountain by bus. It took forever due to potholes and puddles the size of Costa Rica itself. Thank goodness it wasn't raining. The entrance off the highway is paved, but it soon turns into a dirt road. I wondered aloud why the entire way wasn't paved, and my friends gleefully replied that it was part of the experience. You wouldn't feel like you were going into the backcountry if the roads were paved. Touché. It also wouldn't be Costa Rica if the international highway had four lanes (It has two, and at times three but people don't understand the concept of passing the left and returning to the right.)
Anyhow, Monteverde in three words: Barrel of fun. Come check it out.
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maverickranger on

a long comment
I'll definitely check out Monteverde if I'm ever down in Latin America. The places you described sound great for an animal-lover like me. I would imagine that a hummingbird would smack into a person and bounce off, but that's based on my experiences with locusts in the backyard (which are much smaller and don't have pointy appendages).

As for irresponsible tourism, I've experienced that on my trip to Japan last year. The worse part about that was our group was the Youth Ambassador delegation for the Sister Cities program. Hopefully this year's group (which includes my brother's friends) will better represent our city. I know I've gotten carried away before, but I'll check myself before I make a complete idiot of myself. There are things you do at home, things you do when you're alone with your friends, and things you do in public.

To end on a totally random note, I'm so excited about Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. I was trying to think of who to dress as for the release since my hair too short to be Cho Chang. Fortunately I have a blond wig and I'm going to be Luna Lovegood, as she appears in the movies (so that I don't have to make a robe since they seem to be phasing them out of the films). Anyway, I gotta run so talk to you later!


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