Saturday, January 8, 2011

A Great Start to a New Year!

I sit here in my casa alone, for the whole day; a much needed respite after not having a day to myself in nearly 8 months. My family, including my mom and niece who are visiting, have gone on a full day snorkeling adventure to Cano Island National Park. I wish them many exciting sightings of the fishy kind, but meanwhile I'm am immensely enjoying my quiet day alone. I hope to stay in my PJ's all day long, catch up on some blogging, and definitely take a nap!

So, to catch up on our adventures . . .

As previously mentioned in my last post, our friends from Celo (Tal, Jess, Isaac, and Micah) visited us over New Years. They wanted to have some hot, sunny beach time, and we were happy to oblige (although the sun did get overshadowed by rain clouds a couple of times). Here's the happy family after a bit of sun and surfing.

Here's Tal soaking up his tropical vacation. Hopefully, they all got enough warmth to see them through the rest of the cold, snowy winter in the mountains.

We made our little beach camp under these coconuts palms, though we were well positioned in order to avoid any ripe coconuts which might drop. Ah, the hazards of tropical vacations.

Here's a shot of all the beach-bums.

On New Year's Eve, we went out to the "whale's-tail" for a bit of snorkeling off the rocks, and we enjoyed a great sunset . . . the perfect way to say farewell to a fun-filled year. Note the frigatebird that was also enjoying the show.

The next morning, New Years Day, we took a boat tour into the waters of the Ballena (Whale) National Marine Park, which surrounds the "whale's tail" rock formation. Appropriately enough, we saw humpback whales! Here are the kids watching intently for the spray of the whales, in hopes of seeing the whales' tails emerge as they dive back under the water.

Our boat captain took us to Playa Ventana (Window Beach) where he drove us through this sea grotto.

Nearby the windows we saw two green sea turtles swimming. I didn't get photos, unfortunately, but they are such beautiful creatures! We also did some snorkeling around Isla Ballena (Whale Island).

Here are the sea-monkeys ready to go!

We saw some cool fish, and our guide found an amazing spider-like sea-star that I let crawl around on my hand for a long time. Unfortunately, the sea sickness which had been building up all morning came to a climax when a huge fish that I had been following pooped in my face, and I realized that I was swimming in a bunch of whale and fish poop! I added my breakfast to the array of aquatic excrement and was done for the day! It's because of this experience (which was somewhat unpleasant at the time, but stands out as a wonderful morning in my memory) that I've chosen to be a land-lubber today while my family explores the high seas.

That nap is starting to sound good . . .

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