Woke up to another beautiful day of sun. So much for the rainy season!?! We were definitely not complaining! We headed up the beach to Iguana Surf Shop to meet our instructor Julio for surf lessons for the group. Only thing we were allowed to take to the beach, across the street, were our bathing suits - stuff gets stolen apparently (again- no cameras=no photos). So off we went for 20 minutes of instruction on the beach and then straight into the surf for 100 minutes.
The ocean water was the warmest we had experienced in a long time. Made all the time we spent in it even better. All four of us benefitted from Julio's awesome instruction and enthusiasm. He was very patient too. So we were all catching waves with varying degrees of ugliness- because none of it was pretty. But it was definitely fun!
Lunch at Taco Stop was the best surprise meal we'd had yet. I even posted a review on Trip Advisor because we liked it that much. Back at the hotel we quickly put on some dry clothes to head out of town to visit a farm. This farm belonged to the owner of our hotel. She has taken in orphaned wild animals at her property for many years. She used to keep them at the hotel, but too many people were coming from other places to see the animals. So she moved them to the farm. Luckily another guest at the hotel told us about the farm so we asked if we could go.
At the farm we met Jojo, a white faced capuchin monkey, and 2 orphaned howler babies, who were 5 and 7 months. They were pretty shy at first, but as soon as the baby howlers saw my hair they went crazy. The first one jumped on me, grabbed my hair, and put it in his mouth. I was worried he was going to bite it off. But Horge, the guide who took us to the farm, assured me the baby was just sucking. And suck, and suck, and suck he did. And then the baby, Luca, joined in. They took turns, but always went for the hair. Their care taker, Ingrid, was like the baby's mommy. If she got too far away the monkies would panic and cry for her. Just like a little toddler, they would wiggle and squirm to get out of your hands and back to their "mom". It was so cute to see how much they loved their "mommy".
Jojo was a bit older, maybe 1 year, but they weren't sure on his age since he was orphaned when he was older. This monkey was very friendly and mischievous. He would jump from one person to the next, trying to steal your stuff. He took a bobby-pin right out of Michelle's hair. They also had 3 baby raccoons, which were adorable. It was an unforgettable experience.
Returning from the farm we had some time before dinner that night. We decided to rent some kayaks from our hotel and paddle out to the small island near our hotel to watch the sunset. Because Ian had a cold coming on, he crashed the minute he laid on the bed. So Michelle, Brent, and I rented a double kayak and squeezed three of us on it. Paddling out to the island through the waves and current proves to be a little nerve racking, but we made it!! One-third of the island was covered in shells, with lava rock covering the rest. It was a haven for hermit crabs and had lots of hiding places for large crabs too. We climbed to the highest rock on the island to take in the view. Looking around I noticed a single kayak paddling off the beach. Every time I looked back the kayak was getting closer to the island. Ian woke up, and not wanting to miss out, paddled out just intime to watch a dazzling sunset. Paddling home in the twilight was quick and we made it without tipping over in the surf!
Back on land we took a quick dip in the inviting pool. Dinner that night was at our hotel, set at a table right on the beach. The food was delicious, the weather was beautiful and clear. Another round of hearts that night, until we were drowning in exhaustion,brought another amazing day in Costa Rica to an end.
(pics of dinner to come)