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Sunday December 11: San Ramon

Tuesday December 13: Uvita

Monday December 12: San Ramon to Uvita

Passport Panic

I got up shortly before the alarm went off. My first thought was that the dehumidifier was still going. Even though I had emptied it just before going to bed, it should have filled up long before I got up. Perhaps the humidity had dropped or something.

Shortly after I got up, my next thought was "why are my feet wet?" At that point, I realized that apparently the float had malfunctioned, the dehumidifier had filled up, it hadn't turned off, and it was overflowing all over the floor. Fortunately, we didn't have anything on the floor that would get damaged.

During the night, we had become enveloped in clouds again.

We had breakfast, packed up, and left.

Broadwing Hawk On Side of Road

It turns out that the visit to the wood place was supposed to be Monday morning, but it had been moved to Sunday. So rather than visiting there, and then continuing south, we just had a travel day.

We went through lots of apparent back roads and small towns. One place, we were held up for 5-10 minutes because they had cut down a tree across the road, and they had to cut it up and clear the road to let the traffic through. Another place, we had a shorter delay as they were excavating the side of the road to make it more angled, so that stuff wouldn't fall on the road.

Clearing Tree in Road

Around 11:30, we reached our lunch stop. We were early, so we went down to the beach and looked at birds. Among other things, there were a bunch of frigate birds circling overhead, and a lot of black headed vultures. Around noon, we went in for lunch. There, our guide noticed an iguana sitting on top of a nearby wall.

Black Headed Vulture on Road
Iguana on Wall
Iguana on Wall
Frigate Bird
Frigate Bird
Perched Vulture
Frigate Bird

We continued south until we came to our lodging, which is perched on a hillside, with a view of the ocean.

Painted Cow at Lobby
Bedroom Area of our Suite
Our Bed

Now came the big problem. Amy couldn't find her passport! She obviously had it when we got to the previous hotel, but now it was nowhere to be found. She can't say for certain that she got it back when we checked in, but I would think that if reception had it, they would have notified her and given it back. Our guide is looking into it.

Around 4:20 Amy and I went out to wander the grounds and hike a trail. There was a building across from reception that had some stairs leading to a large porch, where there were some hummingbird feeders set up. We went up to the porch, which seemed half a game room and got set up for some hummingbird pictures. A woman and dog came out, and we said hi. A bit later, we realized that this was probably her house and not really part of the hotel (although there was no sign to this effect), so in embarrassment, we beat a hasty retreat.

Jim Below Building with Porch
Game Room Porch
White-necked Jachobin Hummingbird at Feeder
White-necked Jacobin

The trail map we had was quite crude. It gave few details. We got to the start of the trail, and found that the trail was also quite crude. It was steep and muddy, with lots of roots. Amy tried using a stick as a walking stick, but it quickly snapped. I went quickly back to the room and got her a real hiking pole (along with changing into my hiking boots).

Steep Unimproved Trail
Jim on Unimproved Trail
Unimproved Trail

I returned to the trail and descended the steep start. At the bottom, I gave the hiking pole to Amy. Unfortunately, there was then a long uphill, followed by an even steeper uphill.

Halfway up, my foot slid and I lost my balance. I reached for a small tree nearby to steady myself, and at the last second thought better of it and didn't grab it. This was good, because I only got one needle-like spine in my finger tip. As I had feared, the plant was covered with lots of needle-like spines.

Plants with Needle-like Spines

We made it to the top, but Amy was a physical wreck. The trail leveled off, and we saw a very large owl butterfly, but the light was so bad that it was almost impossible to get a picture of it.

Owl Butterfly on Crude Trail

The trail started to descend, and we reached a trail junction. We could turn off and take the long trail, or continue on the shorter trail. Particularly as it seemed to be getting close to sunset, we went the short way.

The trail descended further and then came to the end. We knew that, because it was marked as the end. However, I still had no idea which way to go. The trail ended at a dirt road, and we could go right and downhill, or make a sharp left. It wasn't clear which way to go, because this road wasn't on the crude map. Amy decided that the sharp left was the way to go. Just as we started down that way, Amy noticed a green arrow pointing that way.

That lead down and then up past some yellow cottages that were apparently the "cheap seats" at this hotel. I went on ahead to try to catch some sunset. Unfortunately for Amy, the dirt road emptied out onto the driveway some distance below the main building.

Yellow Cottages

I hurried up and went past the pool. The sunset wasn't the greatest. From what we could tell, the sun was already below the horizon, but I got some pictures, and then a few more when Amy came up.

Sunset over the Pacific
Pool/Dining Area
Pool Reflections
Pool Area
Pool Area
Pool Area

We went back to the room and chilled for a bit. I took a shower, as I was just saturated from the hike. I think it must have been close to 100% humidity out there. Fortunately, the hotel has A/C.

The phone rang, and Amy answered it. I was really hoping that it was the guide saying that they had located Amy's passport. Unfortunately, it was the opposite. It was the guide telling us that the previous hotel had not located it and asking if Amy had found it anywhere. While she was talking, she was digging through her med bag, and to her amazement, she suddenly shrieked because she found it! She couldn't understand why she had put it there. I couldn't understand why she hadn't looked there before. In any event, it was found, better late than never. I'll sleep easier knowing that it isn't lost.

Just before it was time to head down for dinner, we heard a loud "chirp". About 35 seconds later, we heard it again, and again, and again. We decided that it was the smoke alarm complaining about a low battery. One problem with dealing with this is that our room is essentially two stories tall, so the smoke alarm on the ceiling is about 20 feet in the air.

On the way down to the restaurant, I stopped at reception and told her about the smoke alarm. She said that someone would check on it.

We also found a large beetle, upside down, on the walkway. It was probably 2 or 2 1/2 inches long and 1 to 1 1/2 inches wide. I flipped it back onto its feet. It started slowly moving to the side of the walkway, but Sam helped it the rest of the way to keep it from getting stepped on.

Large Beetle

Dinner went fine, along with a friendly cat that apparently was a stray that started hanging around a few weeks ago.

When we got back to the room, I was wondering if there would still be a chirp or not. When we entered, there was a light on (we had left them all off), so apparently someone had been there. We found that there was no chirp anymore, because....there was no smoke alarm anymore. I guess that was one way to solve the problem.

We found a number of small millipedes on the floor. We found them one at a time, here and there. One was stepped on by accident, but the others were alive and crawling. I "assisted" most of them in leaving the premises.

Up to CostaRica, 2022 main page

Sunday December 11: San Ramon

Tuesday December 13: Uvita