Its legal here to photograph people in public, but for some reason I never want them to know I’m photographing them and actually seldom do – BUT on a public beach it is just too inviting. My “People Shots” are now a gallery within my developing trip gallery (above link) with 3 sub-galleries, each linked from the title of its sample photo below . . .
Most years in September I make a week relaxation adventure in the “Caribe South” which refers to the southern half of the Atlantic coast of Costa Rica around Puerto Viejo de Talamanca and the smaller town of Manzanillo where I explore two national parks/refuges (Cahuita & Gandoca-Manzanillo) for birds, butterflies, monkeys, sloths and other nature, visit some of the Bribri indigenous villages, botanical gardens, and maybe this year a new butterfly garden (if my tour people say it is okay). 🙂
And not to ignore the northern Caribbean side of Costa Rica or Limón Province; that’s where the provincial capital and port city of Limón is located and then above that a favorite national park, Tortuguero, which I hope to return to in 2023! It’s “The Amazon of Costa Rica” or a river and beach based jungle rainforest full of incredible wildlife and other nature! I can’t wait to get back there! 🙂 So much to see and do here!
But this trip is mostly relaxing in the beachside Hotel Banana Azul, walking a forested beachside road (for sloths, birds, butterflies) and walks or just relaxation on the beach (I don’t swim or surf in the ocean anymore) and this is the only place I’ve found that gives a “Relaxation Massage” that is actually relaxing. 🙂 So it is my only get-a-way that is not totally inside a dense rain or cloud forest (though Cahuita & Gandoca-Manzanillo are dense rainforests), yet still nature-centered and very relaxing. I missed it in 2020 due to Covid and no flights there, but here’s a couple of photos from last year’s post-cancer retreat in the “Howler Suite” or Room #1. 🙂
And just one more of the many things I look forward to each year that I’m “Retired in Costa Rica,” from rainforest and cloud forest photo trips to cultural activities and enjoying my little flower garden in Atenas! I have achieved my idea of pure life in paradise! And this December I will celebrate 8 years of living here! 🙂
And that linked title takes you to this week’s Tico Times article about a community-wide band and dance team from Zarcero which will represent Costa Rica a second time in the Rose Parade, Pasadena, California.
Zarcero is a town (called pueblo here) that is a little smaller than Atenas and north of us. It is known for topiaries in their Central Park, cheese-making and this large and professional community band of all ages. If you are one of those Americans who always watch the Rose Parade on TV, be sure to watch for the Costa Rica band! 🙂
My daily nature post was earlier today with the skipper butterfly – now a personal update from cancer surgery & radiation therapy, plus the coming week that I’m excited about. 🙂
As we say here in Costa Rica,“Estoy mejor poco a poco.” I’m better little by little. Most of my taste has returned after losing all of it from radiation. Food is not quite as “tasty” as I remember it being, but so much better now and I can eat almost anything. And my swallowing ability has also greatly improved if not completely normal now.
I still need to sleep long hours at night and sometime nap in the day with not near the high energy I used to have physically. But again it is so much better than it was at the end of June! And I’m still having to accept that being 81 years old might have a little bit to do with my lack of energy or physical ability now. 🙂
Overall I am feeling so much better than I was going into that July trip, plus this trip will be to flat land with no hills to climb! And generally a more “laid back” or relaxing place than my July mountain-top experience! 🙂 Plus right now I’m planning on no tours or side trips, just relax in the forests and beaches of the hotel which I overview below if you read on after this 2019 photo from there . . .
I think I forgot that they are on the Caribbean Slope – east of continental divide (their rivers flow into the Atlantic) meaning November is maybe the rainiest month! 🙂 As soon as the plane got out of Central Valley over the mountains it was raining and hasn’t stopped since. But I love the rainy season in general and have had some great experiences in the rain, like at Esquinas Rainforest Lodge, so I scheduled all my birding hikes and will do the best I can even if under an umbrella! 🙂 Funny thing is I tried to book this trip for Christmas week and they were already full nearly a year ago. I’m thinking about booking for Christmas 2121. 🙂
The best photos in this post (I think) are the “Plane Shots.” Enjoy and expect some wet reports this week!
My prayers go to the Bush Family in their loss . . .
. . . a truly great & humble man!
George H. W. Bush
Humility is not thinking less of yourself,
it’s thinking of yourself less.
~C. S. Lewis
REPORT ON MY BIOPSY: After removing the 10 stitches from my arm (where all that cancer was confirmed removed) and the two stitches from my face for the biopsy, Dr. Gamboa gave me the facial biopsy report:
In brief, it says I have another carcinoma cancer on my face which is a smaller and slower growing type than the one on my arm. No problem waiting until January to remove the rest of it (the biopsy took most of it). Because of the delicate and thinner skin location next to my eye, we will be doing a more complicated and more efficient (more expensive) “Mohs Surgery” with two doctors doing it with a pathologist standing by to make sure they get all of the cancer as he examines each layer as removed (continuous biopsy). It will not be in his office this time but in a clinic, hospital-like, operating room, but still out-patient. He is checking on availability of other doctor and the clinic for the week of 21 January – after my Boca Tapada trip. Remember — the doctors work around my trips! 🙂 Important! That is where I sleep in a tree house 5 nights!
Dr. Gamboa also “PRESCRIBED” wearing a wide-brim hat instead of the ball caps I’ve been wearing and of course sunscreen every day when out. I sure love sunny Costa Rica, just 673 miles north of the equator, but with the value of the sun also comes with some potential dangers for someone like me who loves the outdoors. I have already become more careful, even though the doc says these current growths and cancers were probably caused by sun I got as a child or teen, more sun now can make it worse, so I must be cautious.
Bromeliad Pink in a Shady Area of My Garden I think it will do very well here & I have 6 of them! Atenas, Costa Rica
Bromeliad Red which I really liked, but as you see it gets some sunlight thus I hope it makes it. I got only 1 of these. Bromeliads prefer shade. Atenas, Costa Rica
Road behind Banana Azul Hotel in the Caribbean of Costa Rica The photo & quote that I shared with the mission team today + a Scripture verse with their’s. Photo made in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica
The Costa Rica Star online English-language newspaper How Costa Rica farmers are working to avoid deforestation that plagues the industry around the world. Each farm is given a rating by the United Nations to guide wholesale buyers in their environmental impact. Important! Fast Facts About Sustainable Pineapple Production in Costa RicaUnited Nations
Basically this means a larger terminal building on the beach-side landing strip. They already have an indoor terminal, but tiny with little more than a waiting room and restrooms. Hopefully this will encourage the tourism on the caribbean side of the country that I like to visit at least once a year.
Here is my photo gallery of Small Plane Flight to Limonlast September for my stay at Banana Azul. And here are my photo of the current Limon Airport Terminal:
The current terminal at Limon Airport, Costa Rica I photographed last September.
And the current landing strip on the beach Yeah,that blacktop road is the landing strip. Limon Airport, Costa Rica
OOPS! I found this old post never posted. It was the least important of all the photos I made on my September trip to the South Caribbean, Hotel Banana Azul, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca. The day I walked into town by way of the beach, I found many colorful signs in Puerto Viejo and put together this little collection. Remember, all businesses in Puerto Viejo are locally owned “Mom & Pop” business with no chain hotels or restaurants there. Signs in no particular order. Last one best! 🙂 The simple tourism on the Caribbean coast reminds me of going to Panama City Florida in the early 1950’s.
Downtown Map located most businesses
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica
If you haven’t figured it out yet, Imperial is the main beer company
in Costa Rica and thus makes many of the business signs!
All Over Costa Rica
The Trip Galleryfor this trip a few weeks ago has more interesting photos than these! 🙂
Think of us as near the Panama Canal! And South America!
We are between Nicaragua & Panama. Only Panama separates us from Columbia, South America. And there is a big Colombian influence here including 1 airline, restaurants, and my barber! 🙂
And there are 5 totally different worlds between us and Mexico! And only Panama separating us from Columbia and South America!
Costa Rica is NOT Puerto Rica, an island in the Caribbean sea just south of Florida USA. (This seems to still be a point of confusion for a lot of my American friends who are geographically challenged!) So I was nowhere near the Hurricane Irma that just ravaged the Caribbean Islands and Florida. There was also a smaller hurricane and earthquake that hit Mexico. I am 5 countries south of Mexico, so no where near their recent hurricane and earthquake either. (But thanks for the prayers anyway!) For more on our location with maps, see Costa Rica on Wikipedia.
Now, for the last week I’ve been talking about my visit to the Caribbean side of Costa Rica because our east coast is on “The Caribbean Sea” which is really a part of the Atlantic Ocean I think, and I’m right near where ships move from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean through the Panama Canal. Again study the above maps. Sorry if my visit last week to our Costa Rica “Caribbean” confused you! And by the way, Sept-Oct are the two driest months in our Caribbean and I had no rain there, though I flew back through rain clouds to San Jose where the central valley is in its two rainiest months now! The opposite of our Caribbean coast. So I travel where the weather is good! 🙂
Before Sunrise this morning, I had to leave for birding hike before it rose, so maybe get it tomorrow.
Atlantic Ocean/Gulf of Mexico/Caribbean Sea from Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica.
I’m still working on photo posts for the first day plus Cahuita yesterday and now Samasati today! So I will not try to get them all while on the trip. SLOWING DOWN! Tomorrow I stay at hotel the whole day! No trip or hike! Then Friday go home where I will finish my photo work. Internet is sometimes slow here.
How about Costa Rica and the world cup playoffs? We beat the U.S. and tied Mexico last night until the last seconds of the game. We are not out yet! Close counts in soccer playoffs! 🙂