Costa Rica

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Costa Rica is a very special place to me.  I mean, everyone who goes there will probably say the same thing. It’s hard not to have a special connection with a country so beautiful and a people so welcoming.  But Costa Rica is also where I fell in love with my boyfriend, and for that, it has a special place in my heart.

Well, now that we got that mushy stuff out of the way, let’s talk Zip-Lining! I had never gone zip-lining  and i really didn’t know what to expect when we signed up for a zip-line hike followed by a horseback ride. But oh let me tell you…life-changing!

I had traveled with a group of friends that worked at the same restaurant as me, my boyfriend included. We stayed in Tamarindo for 4 nights, and then Monteverde for 4 nights. Our B&B in Monteverde was on a hill with a constant fog surrounding the entire rain-forest town.  It was filled with backpackers, hikers, locals and children, and i freaking LOVED it!. Don’t get me wrong, the beaches in Costa Rica are spectacular, but a cloud rainforest? c’maaaan. Truly one of a kind.

So this is a pretty eclectic group of people I am with, mind you.  My friend Matt is 25 going on 80.  He has the most sensitive stomach in the world, is already talking about retiring in New Hampshire, and complains about his sciatic nerve more than anyone I have ever met. Naturally, we decided to take matt on a zip-lining hike.

I had heard of Zip-lining in Maine for about $200, and to be honest I wasn’t too enthused.  We pulled up to the base camp  and got a 10 minute run down on how the lines work, clipping on and off to landing stations, etc.

Then we started to hike…and hike…and hike.  I had worn khaki shorts and a regular sweater, assuming this was your average walk around the Charles River.  Oh, no.  About two hours later, we reach the first line.  I looked and saw only a few trees ahead of me, the rest of the space filled with fog.  I watched as about 6 of my friends clipped onto the line and flew out into the mist, disappearing out of sight. my turn. The guide clips me on, we release and head straight for the cloud…

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For about 3 seconds I can’t see anything; everything is blank.  Then the fog clears…OH MY GOD. I am flying hundreds of feet over the entire cloud forest. SOARING! it was one of the most incredible experiences of my life…not to mention watching Matt zip-line is probably one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen in my entire life.

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And so it continued, flying over treetops, hiking in between.  At one point, we flew over the longest stretch in ‘superman’ position, with our back clipped to the line. Did i mention this whole thing cost us about 30 dollars? Oh yea, I love Costa Rica.

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I think Seth was in his element.

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After our awesome zip-lining tour, we had scheduled a horseback riding tour.  CR547The only other time I had gone horseback riding is in Acton, MA, where you ride on a horse named General.  General trotting along just fine, slow enough where I didn’t pass the person trotting two feet in front of me, yet fast enough to catch up with everyone on the trail…that we followed…the whole time.

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So when we drove through the countryside to a remote ranch with children running out of their houses following us, I was taken aback to say the least.  Our horses had simple saddles on them and our guides were local farmers who ran the coffee fields. We hopped on our horses and spent about 10 minutes getting to know them…and off we went.

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We galloped through coffee fields, slowing down to pick fruit off trees and eat them, we waved at locals picking fresh coffee beans, trotted on the edge of steep green hills, weaved in and out of the forest through puddles and leaves. And when we arrived at the farm, the guides asked us to come along for an additional hour ride, free of charge.  Our total horseback trip was 20 dollars and two and a half hours long.

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Matt’s Sciatic started to bother him right about now….

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I think some moments in your life change you forever, that was one for sure.

never follow the crowd ; )

never follow the crowd ; )… (photo credit: Tracy Brennan)

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