Yesterday I completed the last of Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple series of mysteries and had earlier completed all of her Hercule Poirot mysteries. Plus, on my one trip to London I saw her only play, The Mousetrap, the longest running play anywhere in the world! It was great! Just like her books! 🙂Continue reading “Completed Agatha’s Books”
The books say that the male chooses the neighborhood and the female chooses the tree and does most of the building with sticks, so I’m guessing this is the female (they look alike). This one is building in the crotch of a small ornamental palm tree which I hope will be secure during the Jan-Feb winds. Below are 4 photos of this most common and widespread dove in Costa Rica, found from the southern half of the states down through Panama. This one is building a nest in my garden in Roca Verde, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica.Continue reading “Nest-building Dove”
It’s blooming now! Just not as much of it as some past years. Maybe it is because I haven’t been fertilizing? Or enough water? But anyway it is still a beautiful flower for January & February as a vine on top of my back wall. Here’s 3 shots I made on New Year Day! And here’s a shot of it when it was thicker in another year.Continue reading “Triquitraque”
As of today, I have only five of my typical six-night trips planned, less than the every two months goal, but I expect to add some 1, 2 or 3 day trips in-between! In fact, in January there is a day-trip planned for north of where I live to photograph 2 more waterfalls! That will be the last two photos I need to complete my next photo book on the Waterfalls of Costa Rica which I’m titling “WATERFALLS: The Music of Costa Rica.” 🙂
This year’s schedule includes two totally new places along with three repeats of Favorites! Below each of the 3 favorites I’ve added links to my photos from previous trips there. I can’t imagine having a better retirement than I have in Costa Rica! 🙂 There’s always something to look forward to in nature! And a growing Photo Gallery that I’m proud of! 🙂
And the “Feature Photo” at top of Post is also one from Captivo Lodge Website, the view from my room there – supposedly! 🙂
February in Maquenque Eco-Lodge Tree House
This is the lodge where I’ve photographed the largest number of bird species and where I get to sleep in a tree house near the birds and monkeys! 🙂 Photo at right is the “Tarzan” tree house room on my 2020 visit there. See the Lodge Website or my photos linked below from two previous incredible trips there:
April at Guayabo Lodge for Birds, Indigenous History & 2 Volcanoes
This is the first new location for me this year that will have a lot of good birding on campus and in a nearby private reserve, along with a visit to the Guayabo National Monument, an Indigenous Archaeological Site; plus Turrialba Volcano and Irazú Volcano, two of the biggest in Costa Rica that I have not seen yet. See the Lodge Website or specifics on these tours I plan to include from the hotel:
- Guayabo National Monument Tour (with video) or Monument Website
- Turrialba Volcano Tour or NP Website
- Irazú Volcano Tour or NP Website
- Birding in Aquiares River Reserve (owned by lodge)
July Birthday at Playa Cativo Lodge
This is the other new location for me on the other side of Piedras Blanca NP from an earlier favorite, Esquinas Rainforest Lodge, but this time on a beach on Golfo Dulce in an even wilder rainforest. See the Playa Cativo Lodge’s Website or YouTube has a lot of videos from there. The feature photo at top is the view I expect to have from my room and the dining room. 🙂
September Back to Quiet Banana Azul in Caribe
Check out the hotel’s website or see my photo galleries from 4 previous relaxing visits there:
Christmas Return to Arenal Observatory Lodge
Check out the lodge’s website or my photo galleries from two previous adventures:
This is an all-around favorite for just about everything! They are 2nd only to Maquenque Lodge for the number of birds I photograph; one of best rooms & room visitas (I always get Room 29!) 🙂 ; excellent restaurant; fabulous forest trails; the tallest and best birding tower in Costa Rica; a beautiful waterfall; other wildlife besides birds; sitting at the base of the volcano; and close to multiple other great birding reserves and the biggest butterfly garden in the country! 🙂
See my CR Trips Gallery for all the places I’ve visited here.
Expect some stunning new photos in 2022! 🙂
There have been 3 nice sunsets in a row now with the rain subsiding. This is the Dec.25 Sunset and early tomorrow I head back home in Atenas with an interesting flight from Palmar Sur to Drake Bay and then on to San Jose with lots of photo-ops! 🙂
I will be sharing more photos from this Uvita visit over the next few days. There is so much photography inspiration in the rainforest! 🙂
The Cristal Ballena Hotel is listed as one of Costa Rica’s “Birding Hot Spots” and my 20 bird species photos help to demonstrate that in the gallery below this Brown Booby photo.Continue reading “BIRDS at Uvita”
With the huge increase of Covid Omicron engulfing the U.S. and other parts of the world, you may wonder why I risk traveling here in Costa Rica? At least 7 reasons:
- Covid is not increasing here but down to near nothing.
- We have a VACCINATION MANDATE for all of Costa Rica (Biden tried, Republicans said no). I have a cool code on my phone showing proof of vaccination + a printed version & my vaccination card.
- All our adults and teens are vaccinated now and the children in process and adults are in process for their 3rd or booster shot, with no one allowed in the country without proof of vaccination (2 shots minimum) or into some business here and in all after Jan. 8.
- MASK MANDATE is still in effect for anywhere outside your home!
- HAND WASHING is required to enter any business anywhere in Costa Rica.
- 1.8 METER DISTANCING (6 feet) is required anywhere outside your home!
- Costa Ricans listen to science and do what our Health Ministry says to do with no stupid American Republican Party fighting it. What a great place to live! 🙂
Tomorrow morning early I fly Sansa south to the Palmar Sur Airport south of Uvita and then back north by car to Uvita where I’m doing a repeat visit to the Hotel Cristal Ballena (Hotel site link) on a hill overlooking Uvita’s Whale-watching bay on the Pacific Coast (feature photo & one below). I will not be quite as active as I was on my last trip there: 2019-September 13-21–Cristal Ballena, Uvita (link to my trip gallery). The photos from then will show you what a wonderful place it is to just hang out at the hotel and hike in their private rainforest not to mention all the nearby sights! December-February is the time for Humpback Whales from South America to be there, so I might get to see & photo one! 🙂
And here’s just two of the wildlife I photographed from my room terrace last time . . .Continue reading “My Christmas Treat”
. . . lovers of stories, books and libraries – the 3 main characters in this multi-layered story of totally different people from the 1450’s all the way through 2020 and to the future in 2164, all impacted by this fictitious lost and found story by a very early Greek writer who called his story “Cloud Cuckoo Land” (in Classical Greek of course!). It touches on so many life issues and about our own future on earth that I won’t try to list them all. You move between the stories of totally different people (ages 12 to 86) affected by Cloud Cuckoo Land (the Greek novel) in Constantinople (1450’s), Bulgaria (1450’s), Idaho (1940’s to 2020), Korea (1950’s), and outer space (2164) so that like his “All the Light” book (just 2 overlapping stories) you can get confused at first (if not more so). Eventually the many complicated pieces of the puzzle start coming together and you too begin to get what all these others are getting from Cloud Cuckoo Land. It is more multi-layered than Anthony Doerr’s previous classic All the Light We Cannot See (Goodreads Reviews), but just as impactful (if not more so) and will certainly become another classic! I highly recommend both books! 🙂
Read some other Goodreads Reviews of this NY Times best seller, Cloud Cuckoo Land. Now I will simplify my reading escapes with another Agatha Christie mystery! 🙂 Rest my simple mind which is still spinning from this read. 🙂
Reading my latest book in the rocking chair on the terrace . . .
And when I look up from the book, one of these two views . . .Continue reading “Rocking Chair + Book + Terrace”