So, due to technical issues with Blogger I wasn't able to write about my experiences yesterday on our first day. But no worries! I blogged on my phone all day and am reproducing it right here for you, also with updates from today. Here goes :)
Saturday, March 24, 2012
We finally made it! After a nauseous landing and 45 minutes of driving in circles around the airport, we are now supposedly getting food, although of course, plans are always just that: plans.
And now… we’re standing still again, leading to everyone taking out their frustration with boredom on the camera, and I have to say, pictures of me putting my contacts in were NOT flattering to say the least (*ahem* Alexandriya).
It’s supposed to take 1.5 hours to get to La Selva Biological Station, so I’ve been typing this on my phone with the intent of posting it later. As we drive through the streets, a couple of us are ecstatically pointing out how much this reminds us of India. The ways the houses are built, the thousands of colorful billboards, and those gates and gratings that are so typical of Indian houses are everywhere here. The only difference as far as we could tell was the number of people. Although Ana says it reminds her of Mexico, so maybe we just naturally compare places to experiences we have had.
*Later still on the bus*
Absolutely stunning, jaw dropping mountains completely covered in tropical greenery are staring back at me right now as we drive down a really windy road. Every once in a while the greenery bordering the road will part and reveal an immensely vast valley of vegetation shrouded in fog, leading to frenzied camera clicks, usually in vain.
*In our tent suites at Pozo Azul ("Blue Well")*
You do NOT understand the meaning of fresh fruit until you come here. The pineapple and watermelon are to die for, and as one person said, I would definitely get my recommended daily intake of fruit if it tasted like this! We were also privileged to listen to Carlos Roberto Chavarria, the director of the Tirimbina Ecological Reserve, and I was just struck by how deeply he cared for ecological conservation. He always says that he has two sons and Tirimbina is his daughter. I also got to talk to him later, and I liked how realistic he was about ecological/biological diversity. After my first day here, I have to say that Costa Rica has certainly surpassed expectations.
Sunday, March 25, 2012
Okay. It’s super late (not by MIT standards but considering that we wake up at 6am every day and walk around in the hot sun and humidity and all day, it’s late.). I have logged SO MUCH SOUND for radio. And I’m super sleepy. So I probably won’t be doing justice to today. Some highlights:
- Dr. Lee Dyer told us about the research we’ll be doing in the field and his paradigms of “interaction diversity”
- We went on nature walks with absolutely amazing guides who knew almost everything there was to know about the rainforests.
- We saw moths mating!!!!
- We ate chocolate from every step of the process in Tirimbina Ecological Reserve.
- We had an awesome discussion during relaxing period about the Walking palms (which according to some, are trees that actually “walk” by destroying old roots and building new ones further away) becoming an indestructible army, the incredibly high amounts of colones (2,500 colones for a meal) and potential reasons lying in the history of using currency itself, which led to discussions about gold and precious metals, which lead to stories of King Midas, and finallyyy the potential for Jed to harness the power of fusion energy from the ability to turn things to gold.
- I survived a really scary, long suspension bridge that swayed a ridiculous amount from side to side.
- And most importantly, food as always was fantastic.