The elusive toucan
Costa Rica is the first country I've liked after not seeing most of what I came for... Costa Rica to me meant toucans, cloud forests, volcanoes and beaches. We arrived in December, at the start of the dry season, only the rain decided to stay around longer. We stayed at the base of Arenal
volcano, but the clouds never parted. We took a nerve-inducing wet bus ride into the mountains to Monteverde
, but the heavy rain kept the wildlife silent and at bay. Costa Rica finally opened up to us at Manuel Antonio, where the beaches and jungles are home to a very sociable community of monkeys who descend down on you from the trees but don't get much closer. Costa Rica was filled with friendly travelers, all winding their way to the same destinations, just in different ways. Some rented cars, while others took buses. We ran into the same people at different destinations, which was amusing the first couple of times, but not as much the third time. My images of Costa Rica were so strong before going there, and it revealed fragments of itself, often more as a promise than a reality, but enough to make me glad to have gone down there. By the way, I did finally get to see my toucan, in a cage in the courtyard of a hotel in the city.