Green

The response to yesterday’s blog post “Verdure” has been good and of course that older English word refers to the “green” in nature. One response caused me to look up quotes about “green in nature” and there were so many good ones! I limited myself to sharing just three:

“For still there are so many things that I have never seen: in every wood in every spring there is a different green.”

– J. R. R. Tolkien

“Green is the prime color of the world, and that from which its loveliness arises.”

– Pedro Calderon de la Barca

 “Nature in her green, tranquil woods heals and soothes all afflictions.”

– John Muir
Fern

¡Pura Vida!

🙂

Adventures in the Wilds & No Camera!

Those who know me well may not believe that title – and, well – what is happening in this period of few blog posts is that I am totally absorbed in the re-reading the Lord of the Rings books, all in one volume for me on my Kindle, a much longer read than The Hobbit I just completed! Plus I am still mostly tired from the radiation treatments and just not doing much else or getting out much.

The Kindle Edition Cover


Frodo and his buddies are just beginning as they got out of “The Old Forest” terrors and the magical “House of Tom Bombadil” and head for “The Prancing Pony Inn” and more “Dark Rider” or “Strider” encounters (who has been following them).

Eventually I may report on the story with some of my nature photos or I just may give you a break! 🙂

¡Pura Vida!

The Hobbit Re-read

“I’m going on an adventure!”  said Bilbo Baggins

~JRR Tolkien in The Hobbit

Only great books deserve “re-reading” and The Hobbit (Wikipedia link), the 1937 published book by JRR Tolkien, is certainly one of those! I just finished reading it again on my Kindle and of course discovered “new stuff” not in my memory! He pretty much introduces a new character or creature in every chapter and then brings them all back together for the epic “Battle of Five Armies” at the end of the story.

Cover of The Hobbit on Kindle.

I will not write a full or formal review but just share some first impressions and personal feelings on the re-read of a favorite book, which I followed by a re-watch of the 3-movies version of the book . . .

Continue reading “The Hobbit Re-read”

Seen on The Beach

This trip was much more of a “Beach Holiday” for me than most of my trips to or near the beaches of Costa Rica. I’m usually on side trips to national parks or wildlife refuges to photograph nature almost every day. But needing to rest this time, I haven’t left the hotel and thus I spent a lot of time on the beach or overlooking it from my balcony. And of course photographing much! 🙂

With a telephoto lens I did photograph a few interesting people from a distance but decided to give them their privacy and not include in this collection of just nature things I saw on the beach near Hotel Banana Azul, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica. Below is my straight-ahead view from the hotel chase-lounge chair on the beach and below that a slide show of 16 other interesting things I saw on the beach including “A Dragon’s Head” (if you have an imagination!) 🙂 And this doesn’t include the sunrises from the beach every morning which are in separate daily posts.

My view from under the beach umbrella!
Continue reading “Seen on The Beach”

Whispering from Every Leaf . . .

“There is another alphabet, whispering from every leaf, singing from every river, shimmering from every sky.”

― Dejan Stojanovic

And I have always considered every leaf an individual work of art – O so many beautiful canvases!

Anthurium Leaf

Yesterday I was motivated by another blog to go photograph leaves. Below is that collection of 14 “Art Masterpieces” by God Himself! Fourteen totally different leaves in my garden . . .

Continue reading “Whispering from Every Leaf . . .”

Is Costa Rica My “Middle-earth?”

In many ways, YES! And in more than one place I have used the following Tolkien quote in relation to my nearly 7 years of continuous exploring the most magical place on earth to me – Costa Rica!

“It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.”

-J.R.R Tolkien
The Wingfeather Saga uses maps and your imagination for their spirited land.

I just finished the Wingfeather Saga of four books where Andrew Peterson created his own imaginary world called “Aerwiar” and, like Tolkien before him, created this imaginary world before he wrote all the stories so that the places helped shape the stories. I don’t know if Lewis created Narnia before his stories, but as a best friend to Tolkien, he probably did! 🙂 And I can assure you that Costa Rica was created long before me and shapes all of my stories! 🙂

The Stone Bridge in the movie-version of Narnia.


The Wingfeather Saga started off a little slow but ended with a powerful impact on me and probably most other readers. The many places within his world of “Aerwiar” not only influenced his story but also how we the readers react to it. You can easily say the same thing about Narnia and of course the most powerful sense of place in the make-believe world remains Tolkien’s “Middle-earth” that people still study and the fantasy of it keeps readers coming back for more!

Frodo runs through the magical Hobbit village in movie version.

But to me, the best fantasyland of them all is the real country of Costa Rica! It has greatly influenced not only my blog reported adventures here but how I’m living my new “pura vida” daily life in Costa Rica. In some ways I’ve tackled this country the way the Hobbit Frodo approached Middle-earth and how those children approached Narnia & Aerwiar; all with a sense of awe, adventure and purpose! I think it’s the way to approach all of life, wherever one lives! I just think it’s easier in a magical place like Costa Rica! 🙂

And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places.

Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.

~Roald Dahl

My Magical Place is Costa Rica!

Everywhere in Costa Rica is magical like this view from Villa Calletas, Jaco.

¡Pura Vida!

Driving Into the Hills of Atenas

As with any good coffee farming town, Atenas is in the hills below the big mountains and away from the plains of the big city of San Jose. Yesterday as my taxista drove me back home from a doctor appointment in the city, I cellphone-snapped these photos of the approaching hills as we neared Atenas. No great photos but they bear testimony of the terrain of my little pueblo.

The Hills of Atenas Costa Rica from Ruta 27.
The Hills of Atenas Costa Rica from Ruta 27.
The Hills of Atenas Costa Rica from Ruta 27.
And by the time we were at my house, the clouds had moved in for the afternoon rain. 🙂

“We are now in the mountains and they are in us, kindling enthusiasm, making every nerve quiver, filling every pore and cell of us.”

~John Muir

¡Pura Vida!

And One More Biological Reserve . . .

Costa Rica is one of the most biologically diverse countries in the world and already has set aside more than 25% of its total land as either National Parks or Biological Reserves (one at a time). On National Park Day this year (August 24) the park system opened a new reserve in celebration of the nation’s 200 years of independence. Read the whole English article in Tico Times or here’s the summary Introduction:

Reserva Biológica del Bicentenario de la República – Pájaro Campana, a name which invokes the country’s upcoming bicentennial, is located in the canton of Coto Brus, Puntarenas.

The reserve covers an area of 5,075 acres and borders La Amistad International Park, which is shared with Panama, and Las Tablas Protective Zone.

Its forests house biodiversity of scientific and conservational interest, and its rivers supply drinking water to communities in Costa Rica’s Southern Zone.

“These areas become natural laboratories that promote research, for proper management of the protected wild area,” said President Carlos Alvarado.

~Tico Times
Reserva Biológica del Bicentenario de la República – Pájaro Campana

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”

—Margaret Mead

¡Pura Vida!

Check out my Flora & Forest Galleries.

Costa Rica: “Champions of the Earth”

There are many reasons that the United Nations gave Costa Rica the “Champions of the Earth” Award.

Costa Rica was the first tropical country to stop and reverse deforestation. It has managed to produce about 99 percent of its electricity from renewable sources, a rare accomplishment even among the wealthiest nations. And in 2019, it became one of the first countries to craft a national decarbonization plan . . .

~The Washington Post

Read more in this Washington Post article: Costa Rica’s environmental minister wants to build a green economy. She just needs time.

Above in old growth forest, Savegre Lodge, San Gerardo de Dota, Costa Rica.
Feature photo at top is view from my room at Villa Caletas, Jaco, Costa Rica.

¡Pura Vida!

A New “Lay Flat” Book

My constant urge to be creating something led me to doing a second “Lay Flat” Book with Blurb.com which simply means a thicker book with pages glued together so that there are no gutters between pages, making it idea for horizontal landscapes across two pages. I did one back in 2018 titled Costa Rica Sunrises and Sunsets. I think it is nice! And this one focuses on landscapes with only 4 sunrise/sunsets in it. 🙂 40 pages, 23 photos.

Check out the free preview at: https://www.blurb.com/b/10831231-a-voyage-of-discovery or click the cover image:

Click Image to See a Free Preview of the Book

And if you are wondering about that title, it comes from a quote that I put on the back cover of the book:

“The real voyage of discovery consists, not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.”

~Marcel Proust

¡Pura Vida!