12 Photos

Initiation to Island Time
Costa Rica Trip: Island Time

(Valerie Sloan)
So we knew up front to expect a different perspective on time. It was so wonderful to have someone pick us up (at all our transitions) and not have to coordinate or worry about it on our own. At 7:30 we were picked up by a van taxi for a quick ride through the city to a small airport. There we checked in for our short 1 hour flight to Palma Sur. I don't fly in little prop planes often. But along the trip I kept thinking that everything was better than a ride at Disney, including the floating feeling of bumpiness over the mountain range first for a quick stop at Quepos then to our destination. We were met at the tiny airport by the next leg of the adventure. About a 20 minute way for another group and we were on our way for a quick 20-30 minute ride to Sierpa. Beautiful going through rural area of really tall palm trees into a tiny town.

Once we arrived at Sierpa we had another 45 minute wait as the boat 'driver' packed his vessel with our luggage and supplies for the lodge. What was supposed to be an hour boat ride ended up more like almost two. But I think we went the scenic route. The boat captain spoke no english but was good at spotting wildlife along the way - a crocodile bathing, birds, a snake somewhere in a tree that I still couldn't see. The french couple could interpret a little bit about what he was saying.

The river was smooth. He told us that when the tide is low the water comes from the ocean bringing debri. When the tide is high the water flows to the ocean. As the river widened I wondered whether some of the rugged docks were our destination. All of a sudden we hit a transition into the Pacific Ocean. Donning our lifejackets now we greeted the rough pacific with glee. The rocks of lava, I'd imagine this is what Hawaii might be like.

Finally we entered a cove and slowed down to a hum. Boats were congregating in a little area by lava rocks. There we pulled in and stepped out to our final destination (Marenco Lodge) into the warm waters of the pacific. Hello Pacific Ocean, I don't think we've met like this ever before.

Warmly greeted by Diego who we followed up a very steep hill, luckily paved/stepped with rocks. Our bags were loaded into a trailor on the back of a small tractor and magically transported to our bungalow out of sight.

Have we landed on Fantasy Island?? Palm trees galore. Huge bamboo lined the walk up the hill. After about 15 minutes in the newly cherished heat and humidity we made it to the main lodge and dining area. People there enjoying lunch already and happily gazing at the local birds in the trees.

We were greeted by very yummy juice and lunch. Afterwards the manager reviewed all of the logistics with us and we were shown our bungalow. I think we got the best room in the house. Overlooking the cove on the pacific where we had been let out of the boat. Enough room for the four of us, and our house pet 'Fred' the yellow and black salamander hanging out on the wall of the bathroom.

We all decided to get down to the beach. A hike down the hill and over to an area where a few other guests had congregated. The pacific water was warm like a bath. It was sensational especially having just left winter and a snowstorm behind. We hadn't thought about the hike back up the hill but it was worth it.

Relaxing was in order. Post beach exploration, I took my book to the dining lodge where I sat until dinner at 7. There were quite a few other guests so we were able to meet some interesting new people. And a large group arrived shortly after we did.

Dinner was served family style. The lodge was filled with chatter and laughter. The generator kept the electricity on for only a few hours. After dinner, I decided to stay a little while longer to read while the other 3 in my group got settled. I made it back to the room around 10 when lights went out.

Definitely fantasy island. I can hear tattoo now.

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