Lightening and Laughter

Trip Start Jul 25, 2007
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Trip End Aug 09, 2007


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Flag of Costa Rica  ,
Friday, July 27, 2007

continuing where i left off last time,

the night was a joke. we taxi'd to tamarindo with our new friend Mic, and checked in at our hostel. we decided to walk into town and grabbed some pastries at a little (french?) bakery.

we walked down to the beach and shot some video. Did the ceremonial take-your-shoes-off-and-get-your-feet-wet dance that we do when we arrive at a new beach.

we wandered down the beach and talked about what the weather was going to be like. we had all heard it was the rainy season but that it it's short and hard, in the late afternoon. Usually a few minutes to an hour, and then its gone. We figured it had just passed, since the clouds were dark around the edges.

We walked north along Tamarindo Beach to where the river feeds into the ocean. we stripped down and got in to play with the current. it was shallow and pushed us out to sea with good strength. we just kept crawling upstream and then drifting back down again. Then we heard the thunder.

the rains came hard and fast, like we'd read. The skies turned dark grey and the waters came down heavy. it was better water pressure than my apatrment shower, quite literally. At first, we loved it. the late day sun got smothered by clouds and for a few minutes, everything shone gold. Surfers came from nowhere and ran out passed us into a golden fog, and disappeared. We could see faint figures surfing as the clouds moved along, and it looked like they were surfing in the sky. maybe they were.

soon the magical gold skies faded and the real rain came. It rained so hard that the shoreline was ripped up and cast out to sea. what was a gentle slope into the river was now a rapidly increasing dropoff. i scrambled up and ran our bags into the bushes to save our cameras. It helped little, the bags still got soaked. We ran around in the rain like crazies and enjoyed the surreal experience. Until the lightening came.

The lightening started far away, quick jolts of light similar to storms back home. In Vancouver, there generally isn't enough heat to generate lightening, but it happens now and then. However, the lighening got closer. And bigger. Way bigger. In fact, i'd venture to say the most massive strikes of lightening were coming down within miles of us. It felt like brontosaurus legs coming down from the sky, threatening to stomp us to smitherines. The laugher stopped.

We grabbed our bags of water and marched back to down. there was little point in dressing, so we wrapped ourselves in sarongs as best we could. By now the sky was black but the rains still came and the bolts of lightening were humungous. They were so loud and so close, we actually let off a few screams after each one. We headed for a field, since i just studied Natural Distasters and remembered its the safest place to be in a lightening storm.

After being kicked off private property, we were on the main road in Tamarindo. The locals were ducked into bus stops and walking in long lines under tarps, looking like long black snakes carving down the road. All of them laughed at us, soaking and half naked white kids clutching their bags and drudging their way back to our hostel, yelping at the thunderclaps.

we arrived after a few years on that road and dried off. When the rains passed, we walked back into town and ate some over-priced but delicious seafood in town. Mic insisted on paying for us, claiming that we did him the favour of dragging him out here, and giving him quite the experience. Kidnapped by Canadians would be his memoir.

We returned to our hostel and collapsed. It was hot and sticky and i was actually sore from the rain. i curled up in my lumpy bed and slept with a smile.
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