March 28: Well, it didnít rain as much during the night, but
we had a downpour at breakfast. We managed to get across the river
for our planes which came at 8:30 or so. They sent a 7 passenger
twin engine and a single engine plane. Jim, Charlie and all the
luggage went in the single engine and the rest of us in the larger plane.
We flew into the international airport and waiting for us was Luis
Morales, our driver. What a nice bus! Big enough for us to
move about, air conditioned with a cooler stocked with ice and bottles of
water. CRE had scored again!
out about 9:30 for Monteverde. At 11, we stopped for a
bathroom/snack break before bus began the difficult climb up the dirt road
to our destination. During the drive, we heard about the building of
the Pan American Highway as we traveled on a portion of it. Then as
we began the climb on the dirt road, Charlie told us the history of the
Quakers from the US who settled the area after WWII. It seems that
these folks had served as medics during the war but refused to do service
during the Korean Conflict so they were told they were welcome no longer
in the US. They packed up and trekked down through Central America
looking for a place to settle. The Monteverde area was perfectly
isolated and they began to farm and raise dairy cattle. The cheese,
ice cream and other dairy products available in the area all come from
also saw our first living fences on this drive. Trees that were
along the edge of property were used to string barbed wire. When the
trees were far apart, branches were cut and stuck into the ground
intermittently along the wire between the trees. They subsquently
took root. Besides serving as fence posts, the trees are windbreaks
and some offer fodder for cattle.
took about 2 hours on the dirt road and we arrived at 1:30. Went
straight to lunch which the restaurant held for us and of course it was
delicious again. The meals are not normally served family style at
MV Lodge, but in order to speed things up, Charlie asked for them that way
a couple of times. The restaurant is a bit more formal and larger
than the one at Tortuga Lodge. The waiters wear black pants and
white shirts with black ties - very elegant.
3, we headed out on a hike with our fearless leader. We went through
a forest that was part of a farm. Besides all the birds, we saw a
coatimundi, an agouti, and an arboreal porcupine with a prehensile tail!
with just enough time to shower before dinner. Here at MV Lodge
there is a posted menu. I had escargot, langoustine thermidor,
wonderful vegetables and rum raisin ice cream for dessert!
other attraction that evening was the television in the bar, viewable from
some points of the dining room. A very interesting and intense
soccer match was taking place between Costa Rica and Trinidad/Tobago, part
of the qualification rounds for the World Cup. As the dining hour
wound down, we noticed our young waiters drifting toward the bar.
All at once there was a hush and then a cheer - Costa Rica had scored.
And Costa Rica ended up winning that game.
Lodge advertises that they have internet connections for their guests.
After dinner I attempted to get on line, but all four computers were
commandeered by teenaged boys who were all trying to outdo each other
bragging about the machines they had at home and what all they could do
with them. There was so much testosterone flying around that small
room, I fled!