Shaking Frogs And Salsa Lessons

The thunderstorm raged through the night.  Rain pounded the roof and more than once, I awoke to the entire room illuminated from a lightning bolt.  It was wonderful.

The itinerary for our second day in Tortuguero included a nature walk through a frog pound and butterfly garden, all on the grounds of the Mawamba Lodge, followed by an afternoon cruise on the river where we would look for Costa Rica’s wildlife.  What we didn’t plan for was the rain.  Granted, we were the ones who decided to travel during the wet season so we knew what we were getting into.  Well, at least some of us.

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Tales Of Tortuguero

Early the next morning, Karen and I grabbed our suitcases and headed down to enjoy a nice breakfast before meeting our tour group.  I sampled plátanos or plantains for the first time and I was hooked!  I made it my mission to enjoy some at every meal and for the most part, I wasn’t disappointed.

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Exploring San José

Last year, Karen contacted me twice to plan a trip internationally.  The first time, I was still dating the ex and spending most of my vacation days traveling up north to see him, so I didn’t think I could spare an extended trip where I didn’t get to see him.  I forgot about her asking me to travel and went about life.  A few weeks later when Karen asked me again, I was single, heartbroken, and ready to say yes to getting the hell out of town.  When I inquired where she was thinking of traveling to, she said she heard great things about Costa Rica.

Luckily enough, I have travel connections to make it happen.

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Why I Travel

Greetings from Costa Rica!

I am currently exploring this wonderfully lush Central American country with my darling friend, Karen.  This trip has been in the works for over nine months and we are thrilled that we are finally here and ready for any adventure that comes our way.  We have only been in the country for two days and already we are filled with giddiness for this tropical place.

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Live Free Or Die At A Sugar Shack

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I spent last week on the East Coast in Massachusetts for my annual pilgrimage to visit family.  It was one of the best trips out there for quite a few reasons.  One, my mom didn’t have to work and my aunt and uncle from Sacramento were also there (though my uncle did have to work).  And two, this was the first time we managed to see the entire family in the few short days we were there without a funeral being involved.  Unfortunately, a full schedule didn’t allow me to visit with any fellow bloggers and I’m still disappointed about that, but I’m sure they’ll understand the whole “family comes first” sentiment and I will always be back again next year.

Normally, I stay fairly close to the family, but this time, we stayed in Andover in the Northern part of the state and a mere two miles from New Hampshire.  The moment I found out we would be so close to New Hampshire, I made everyone aware that I wanted to visit.  The response: “Why?”  My answer: “Why not?”

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Wandering Through Wine Country

We’ve been experiencing a bit of a heat wave here in Southern California.  Not exactly feeling like winter when it’s too warm to wear sweaters and boots.  It was noted that my hometown was the hottest place in the country last week (take that Florida!) and I for one am eager for things to cool down.  Christmas didn’t quite feel like Christmas with the warm Santa Ana winds rattling through the house making it necessary to run the air conditioner all day.  Nevertheless, this weather makes for perfect exploring and that’s just what Karen and I did this past weekend.

When we drove up to Santa Cruz to visit Rose in September, part of our journey included passing through Santa Barbara’s wine country.  It was there that we decided we needed to plan a weekend and come back for some tastings, our own PG-version of Sideways, which we had every intention of watching the night before, but we were so busy chatting and scouring for discounts on Groupon that we didn’t get around to it.  Nevertheless, after a breakfast of eggs and bacon made by yours truly, we settled on Los Olivos with Groupons for two tastings and the planless plan to just see where the day took us.

Wine

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Searching For Banana Slugs

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A few weeks ago, my friend Karen and I decided to get out of town and visit Rose up in Santa Cruz.  It was a journey that we had tried to make happen since she moved up there in May, but conflicting schedules made it impossible.  Finally, after a human sacrifice and the proper alignment of the planets, we found ourselves driving up the 101 Freeway bound for Northern California.

I had never been to Santa Cruz so I was incredibly excited about this trip.  Rose had planned several activities that she thought we would be interested in and I quickly realized there was no way we could do it all in the weekend we were there.

Arriving after a long drive, we were greeted by Rose and one of her new friends.

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A Case Of Wanderlust

Wanderlust

As I’m sure most of you know by now, I love to travel.  It doesn’t matter where I go, I just want to see someplace new.  I get giddy packing my suitcase in anticipation of the unknown sights and adventures that await me.  Sometimes I feel that my suitcase spends more time out of the closet, waiting to be packed or unpacked, than it does nestled amongst my clothes and shoes.  Whether by car, by air, or by boat, I couldn’t imagine my life without a trip to a different location at least once a year.  There is a certain feeling you get when exploring an area you’ve never seen before.  Even if it’s an area in immediate vicinity.

A lot of times, I hop in my car and drive down an unknown road just to see what’s at the end of it.  I have uncovered full neighborhoods in hidden canyons, dined at hole-in-the-wall restaurants with the greatest food, and viewed formerly familiar territory with a new set of eyes.  There is much to be discovered and rediscovered in this world and I won’t stop until I explore every inch of it.

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A Side Of Swiss: Part 2

With heavy hearts and thoughts to those in the States, we packed our bags, left the beautiful Schweizerhof, and headed to a boat cruise along Lake Luzern before heading to Zürich.  From the lake, we took in the beauty of the Swiss Alps, the gorgeous homes along the water, and just a little bit of Brazil.  Ok, maybe just a statue similar to Christ the Redeemer.

Lake Cruise

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