I know I’m super late posting about my last week in Costa Rica–but my computer completely broke the last few days of traveling. When I got back to the US, I tried to get it fixed, but the guy said, “There is no hope,” and he recycled it. Yup. Goodbye, computer.
Anyway, I wanted to write about my last week in Costa Rica, because it was a very special week. I went back to Samara, my favorite town (where I lived for the month of October). I got to live in a different host family’s house. It was the same host family that Jessica had been living with for 2 months. Except Jessica had been living in a separate bungalow with other students–not inside the house with the family. I had known the family for the past few months because Jessica had been living with them and I had played soccer with Xinia, the mom, before I had gone to Nosara. And Miguel, the son, was such a hoot. We became good friends with him and hung out with him quite a bit.
Here’s a picture of the house. The porch was my favorite part. They had red tile floors throughout the entire house and then the pillars and walls around the porch were tile mosaics, that they had made themselves. I loved laying in the hammock on their porch during the day. And we would all sit around on the porch and chat at night.
And here was my room…
On Tuesday night, there was a huge Costa Rican soccer game (San Jose vs. Alajuela) and of course, everyone watched it. That night, we had dinner with Xinia, Johel (host cousin), and Miguel. And then we decided to watch the game at home. I ran to the store and got a ton of ice cream. Xinia had made jello the night before and she insisted that we put jello on our ice cream. So we had ice cream and jello and watched the game! This was probably one of my favorite nights the entire trip.
I can’t tell you how much we laughed that night. We were constantly teasing each other. This is Xinia… and what an incredible, hilarious, and loving woman she is.
This is the little tv we watched the game on…
On Thursday, the last full day I was in Costa Rica, my friend, Zan, and I decided we wanted to have an adventure. The whole time that I had been in Samara, I had seen tourists taking canoes and stand-up paddle boards out to the island. I had always wanted to go to the island, but I didn’t want to spend a lot of money. Here is a picture of the island. It’s a terrible picture, but at least you can see what it looks like.
So… since we didn’t have a canoe or a paddle board, we decided that we were going to swim. Yes, swim.
In order to swim, we had to make our way to the end of the coast line. So we rode our bikes along the beach until the shoreline turned completely rocky. Then we walked for about 20 minutes over the unstable and jagged rocks until we reached the point to start swimming. The swim was not easy and it was probably a good 3/4 mile. There were lot of waves and it was not easy to swim against the waves. But luckily, I had snorkel gear, so that really helped my stamina. When we made it to shore, we gathered shells for a while and then decided that we wanted to find a way to climb to the top of the island. The island had about 20 feet of beach surrounding high cliffs.
So we wandered around the island, again stepping through jagged, unstable, wet rocks. We then found a “path” that looked climb-able. In flip-flops, we pulled ourselves up the cliff by the tree roots and rocks. Good thing the ants that attacked us weren’t fire ants.
When we got to the top, we were definitely not expecting to find what we found. An ABANDONED building. It was built of cement and stood three stories down into the ground, on the side of the hill. There were also a few cement tubes that ran down the side of the hill near the building as well, but there were all cracked, broken, and shattered on the ground. How in the wooorld could they have gotten CEMENT up to this place? There’s no way they could get a truck with supplies out to the island. And there is no way someone could have carried cement up that steep cliff. And a vehicle could not have driven up to the bottom of the cliff, because of the giant rocks at the base.
Then we noticed that there were a ton of cacti planted in a circle around the building. HOW WEIRD. I’m not gonna lie, I was totally creeped out. I wish I had my camera!
Then we headed back, but the wind had changed. So our swim back to shore was extremely difficult. It took about twice as long because we were swimming against the waves. And the waves were huge. We also had to be really careful of staying away from the big rocks that the waves were crashing up on in the middle of the ocean. When we made it to the mainland, we both screamed out loud. We rode all the way back to town and oh man, I was one tired girl that night. Biking, swimming, rock climbing… couldn’t have been a more awesome adventure.
During our last week in Samara, we spent a lot of time at our favorite places. My favorite beyond favorite place to eat lunch was the local organic market. I spent a lot of time there; drinking coffee, eating lunch, reading, and talking with friends.
I loved this little town of Samara so much. My last week, I spent the majority of my time on the beach. Here are pictures of the beach.. and you can see why I loved it so much!
Playa Samara will ALWAYS have a place in my heart. I am SO thankful for this experience… two and a half months in paradise treated me more than well. I was so sad to leave, but I am so thankful and feel so blessed for this incredible opportunity to explore and live in the beautiful Costa Rica.