Monday, January 12, 2009

Una dia a la playa

Well I never thought getting out of the city would be so breathtaking. Friday afternoon we left for Manuel Antonio, which has beaches everywhere. We left about noon and got to our hotel around 6:30. We stopped at a grocery store as well to get food so we wouldn't have to pay the outrageous prices at the restaurants. After we were settled into our rooms a group of us decided to take a taxi to the center of the town, Manuel Antonio. Once we drove the um, 2 meters to our spot we were charges 4800 colones which is close to $10. No one in our taxi asked them to turn on their meter and since we are obviously not natives they took advantage and way overcharged us. Even though it was 800 colones a peace (about $1.50) it was the principle of the matter. Yes, cabs are cheap but when you are going such a short distance you should be getting charged about 1,500 colones (about $3 total, even if the car is full). Oh well, Ashlee and I just walked back to the hotel to make up for the lost money and have now learned who to ride with and who not to. Our directors were right when they said Manuel Antonio was expensive. Most dinners were $10-$30 a piece. I only splurged on dinner on Saturday night because I couldn't bear the thought of eating another peanut butter sandwich for dinner. But I did have my snacks to eat during the day while on the beach.

On Saturday we met up at 9:00 to go to the National Park in Manuel Antonio. Since this was an ISA excursion, the $10 fee for foreigners was paid for by the company. We then walked to the beach in the park, which was gorgeous. As seen in the photo below:
This was a little less crowded than the beach by our hotel. The sand was hot and the water was cool. It was fantastic. We did some exploring and came across an animal not rare in this area:These are white faced monkeys and if you don't watch out they will steal your belongings looking for food. Lucky for us they didn't steal any of our stuff but they were just so cute. This photo isn't the best because of the sun but it tells the story. It was so nice to swim in the ocean, amazing rather. We stayed in the national park for awhile until some of us decided to venture to the beach by our hotel so we made the trek back. Myself an 4 others decided to do the banana boat in the ocean, which only cost 4,000 colones (about $4), probably the cheapest attraction you could pay for. A jet ski pulled us on this big banana shaped tube in the ocean trying to knock us off. It was fun until we flipped and about the 4th time of me inhaling salt water in my nose, I had enough. We lasted about 30 minutes before we were taken back to shore. Sad story was I lost my sunglasses in one of the flips. Adios $4 sunglasses to the bottom of the sea. Good thing I brought a spare pair.

By the end of Saturday we were exhausted and I was very burnt. Here the sun is closer so bringing a lower SPF wasn't a good idea. Mom, if you saw me, you wouldn't be happy. I promise I put on sunscreen, even more than once. The sun is just a lot closer here. Oh well, my problem, I'm not going to complain about it. I took a ton of photos, between Saturday and Sunday. We didn't leave until Sunday at noon so we spent the morning on the beach as well. The ride back was exhausting, but the sunburn prevented me from getting comfortable to really sleep. Good thing there were movies on the bus because my ipod was dead too, rough life. We got back to San Jose around 5, where it was probably 20 degrees cooler than by the beach, since we are at a higher altitude. The beach was hot as hell and humid=Nebraska July. Ick. I'd live by the beach if it weren't for the humidity and heat.

When we got home Ashlee and I tried to find and internet cafe but a lot of places close on Sunday so we turned up with no luck. I watched some of the Golden Globes before finally going to bed at 9 because I was so exhausted. I didn't sleep well because of the damn sunburn. It's slowly healing, but yes, it hurts. Now to get through classes this week, hopefully with no earthquakes, and we'll be heading to Vernal, the volcano that has hot and cold springs. Should be a blast, and I'm sure, less sun exposure. A few more photos for you. I'll see about posting albums online. More to come later.

Don't forget to notice the sunburn. I figured out I can post a link to my facebook albums, which is probably where I will upload the bulk of my photos. So just click the links and enjoy: Album 1
Album 2

Don't forget to leave comments if you want!

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