Costa Rica – Day 16 Part 1

Posted by Aaron Watters - June 16, 2009 - Costa Rica - No Comments

I made up a “hip-hop” song this morning and sang it repeatedly to LJ so that I could get it stuck in his head. Success. I also randomly sang the song throughout the day to annoy him. Success.

Today is the day we visit one of the top 10 most active volcanoes in the world. I’ve been planning out this trip for the last couple of days and everything seems to be coming together nicely. Yesterday I thought that we were going to have around 8 people going but late last night I found out we actually have 11 people. We rented out a 15 passenger van for the 4 hour ride and have designated Mike as the driver (he’s gonna have some fun).

Just for kicks, I’m going to list out the people that are making the journey with us: The Dream Team, Bama, Dina, Michael, Rachel, Tup, Katie, Sam, Tonie and Karl. Katie is a chica with an awesome heart, solid Spanish skills and is currently attending college at Auburn. Sam is a cool guy from Jersey, he never talks and he is studying to be a doctor (Emily, you have my permission to date Sam). Tonie is from across the pond, she has a really cool accent and she likes to point out the fact that I look like the guy from Man vs. Wild. Karl is a Canadian from the east side (Frenchy), he has a fun outlook on life and is insanely hilarious.

So, we’re off and running / driving at around ~9am and our first stop is Liberia (they have a McDonald’s). Getting a 15 passenger van was probably the best idea we had because everybody got to hang out and talk, it seemed like something was always going on in the van. There was always someone we could make fun of because they were jamming out to their Ipod and dancing around (most definitely myself included). We pulled in to McDonald’s around 10:30 and were able to get some stellar breakfast there. My county fair eating champion (Bama) had something like 3 egg McMuffins, no big deal.

After rounding up all of our peeps we took off towards La Fortuna (the town on the other side of Arenal). Everything was going really well until we got about an hour and a half away from La Fortuna. The roads became quite narrow and the turns were sharp, it seemed like we were turning every 3 seconds, some girls in the back felt a little queasy. Karl apparently gets a little car sick, so he decided to put his head out the window for most of the trip. Anytime a notable object came up, he simply grabbed his camera, and put the upper half of his body outside of the window. We also sang. I mean a lot. There was some Backstreet Boys, Enrique Iglesias and I totally brought “I Believe I Can Fly” in to the picture. We all enjoyed the singing, but we really liked hearing Tup sing the most, especially since he didn’t know a lot of the words (it was only much later that we found out he was trying to sing the Lion King song “Can You Feel The Love Tonight”). Tup is a baller. Anytime Tup or I got in to an awkward conversation with one of the girls, the other guy would randomly sing the line, “I Believe I Can Fly” and we immediately changed subject. Tup also decided to point out anytime that we had a great chance for some sweet pictures he would yell out (In an awesome Thai accent), “Photo Opportunity!!!” and we would all grab cameras. Thanks Tup.

We finally arrived at an amazing looking hostel in La Fortuna with a ton of people there, they had a really nice pool, a wet bar and a ton of hammocks outside. They don’t take reservations so we just had to try to get there early enough, but we didn’t. Lucky enough for us, the hostel had a hotel next door that they sent us to, for $12 a person. It was totally cool. We met some people later that told us the hostel looked nice, but the rooms weren’t that good so we were really happy with the way things turned out. What’s better is the fact that I was able to use my first class negotiating skills and got us on a tour with the people at the hostel we weren’t staying at for a pretty dang good price.

After my negotiations ended we went over to our hotel to change and get ready for the hike and hot springs tours. I began pulling out my clothes and decided that I would but on my bathing suit so I wouldn’t have to change at the hot springs. Well…the bathing suit that I had packed was in a plastic bag and had been in a plastic bag for the last 3 days. You see, I went swimming on Wednesday, and didn’t want to get my backpack wet, so I put my suit in a plastic bag (brilliant I know). It wreaked. The smell was very…sewage-like. I could hardly sit down because I couldn’t get my nose that close to my shorts. It was ridiculous. I felt terrible, I never smell bad (ask Miss Gleason); it’s totally not my thing. BUT today was all about my pungent scent. Bama did have the great idea of soaking my shorts in Off which helped, but you could still smell the sewage through the Off, the Off just messed with everyone’s mind and distracted it from the smell of death. I really don’t know how else to describe the smell that loomed over my shorts except for that…death. It was great though because we got to ride in the van for about 30 minutes, and death came with us. Dina sat next to me and wasn’t very happy with me. In fact, I don’t think I’ve seen her since we left the van…

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