Tag Archives: Summer

Houston USA – Liberia CR – Cañon de la Vieja

I woke up 5:30 as Lisa woke up in the other bed in the room and we spent about an hour talking before we had to get out of bed, which left me with 30 minutes to get ready and on my way. Lisa drove me to my terminal where I checked in and went through the security control. My flight had changed from terminal C to E, but that great because between the two terminals there is a nice little shopping area. For breakfast I had some amazing chocolate covered strawberries and I found some really cool Christmas decorations for my tree. A Texas cowboy hat and a boot ! :D Awesome.

The plane was almost full, but the seat next to me was unoccupied and both me and the guy by the window were happy for that. Extra space in airplanes is not granted too often :D He was a Costa Rica first timer and had lots of questions about where to go and what to see.

We arrived Costa Rica on time at 12:30, and in the passport control I was lucky enough to meet one of my friends working in the airport who opened up a new counter and let me go through customs as one of the first in line. I was also lucky to find my luggage coming out as one of the first ones :D Yay! Go VIP treatment :D

Mami, my sister Roxana, husband Gilber and son Luis were my welcome committee and they relieved me from my luggage and showed me to the car, and then we went home to have lunch.

Cañon de la Vieja

During lunch my brother Federico called to ask if I wanted to join his family to go swimming and enjoy the afternoon. Of course I joined them.

Cañon de la vieja is a hotel with swimming pools, spa treatment, hanging bridges and much more and its just about 15 minutes drive away from Liberia. Federico came to pick me up with his wife Noylin, kids Ana and Isabella and nanny Rebeca. Arriving there Federico sat down in the shade in the bar and had a drink and the kids and I went for a swim. Noylin joined us shortly after and we had fun for a long time playing in the water.

14Vieja04

Swimming pool at Cañon de la Vieja

When we were done we decided to go check out the hanging bridge. I brought with me Ana because she was really afraid to cross but in the end she had lots of fun. Isabella, Noylin and Rebeca joined us shortly after.

14Vieja

Me with Ana

14Vieja02

Isabella and Noylin on the hanging bridge

Later on we went to the spa pools. Costa Rica has lots of thermal waters, but this was a regular heated spa pool. Nonetheless… Very enjoyable temperature compared to temperatures at home right now.

14Vieja03

Spa pool

Just before 5pm we joined Federico by the bar and changed the kids before we headed back home.

14Vieja06

Noylin, Federico and Isabella

14Vieja05

White Throathed Magpie-Jay

Well at home I arrived just in time for dinner and Mami had cooked us a nice meal which we enjoyed together. A great day ended with movies at home with Mami and Papi and early bedtime after 2 nights in a row with just 3 hours of sleep :D

Oslo – New York – Houston

For years I have suffered from winter depression and this year was no different than the previous years. However – planning ahead I know I can do something to make it better.

Winter has come, it is time to flee. Destination: Costa Rica

SnomannRai

My first flight this morning was from Oslo to Newark. It was an 8,5 hour long flight. I watched movies, read and tried to get some sleep to catch up on several nights with little sleep. Last night was no exception with only 4 hours with my cheek on the pillow. Not necessarily due to poor planning or that I hadn’t done most of the packing already, but neither yesterday nor the day before was I home before midnight. Wednesday I went for a Christmas concert with my sister and yesterday after work I went to see “The Hobbit – The desolation of Smaug” a the movies before I left and then went to deliver the cat to his sitters.

When I came home at midnight I checked up on the last few items to pack and started backing up my cellphones and camera and laptop in case either should be stolen during the trip. That took its time.

I had a 3 hour layover at Newark airport before my next flight to Houston. However most of the time was used to go through the passport control, pick up luggage, go through customs control, re-check the luggage and then go through the security control again. Queues were long and I was only left with 30 minutes to search for some food to go (the worst sushi I ever had – and I eat a lot of sushi).

In Houston I had to pick up my luggage and while waiting in the luggage area a message was anounced over the speakers… (By the way… You know you have arrived to Texas when… ): “For all passengers travelling with firearms you can pick them up at counter 21. Please bring your owner ID.”

When I had claimed my luggage I took the airport train to my hotel where I checked in and met up with my friends Melanie and Lisa. We went to have dinner at Good Eats restaurant and I was a bit torn about what to eat. I could have either Howl at the moon Nachos or Baby Back Ribs.

howl

In the end I ended up with the Texas Star Signature Steak. Lovely.

mel-lisa

It was so good to see both Melanie and Lisa again. We chatted and chatted and in the end we were asked politely to leave. The restaurant was closing :D We went back to my hotel and kept talking there. Melanie left at 1 am and Lisa stayed over to help me with my luggage in the morning. And … when you see you friends once every 2 years it’s nice to be able to see them for as long as possible. I fell asleep in an instant.

A day at the Beach at Scheveningen

This morning I slept in. I have not really felt well for about 2 weeks now so sleeping in was lovely.

About 11 am I went outside to enjoy the beautiful weather and pick up some breakfast and then I headed towards Scheveningen and the beach. I took the tram and enjoyed some nice music on my way there. Scheveningen is one of the 8 districts of The Hague.

It was a beautiful day, quite windy, but really beautiful. At the last stop of the tram line I walked towards the beach. Not so many other people were here today, but I enjoyed a long and nice walk along the left side of the pier.

I sat down to enjoy a drink at the Oase Beach Club and to enjoy the sun out of the wind, before I went over to the Restaurant area for a beach promenade. The sun was warm and lovely and Iwas having a great time shopping and walking along the beach.

I should have probably stopped to enjoy the fish spa, but it was quite nice to enjoy an ice cream and walk by as well :D

The wind was so strong that the sand was whipping towards my legs, and I was very happy to have brought with me my hooded jacket to keep me warm :D

The official symbol of Scheveningen is 3 silver herrings swimming to the right; above the head of each herring a crown of gold.  This emblem is printed in the sement tiles laid all over the city.

Links to Tourist Information in Scheveningen
Official Tourist Web Page for Scheveningen

Spending the day with friends

I had breakfast at home today and then I headed for Hotel El Sitio again.

At 3 pm I left and headed for my friend Angelicas house. It was very nice to see her and her daughter again.

When Angelica had to go to mass at 6 she dropped me off at the park where I met Diego and we went to the Italian ice cream shop to have more of that awesome delicious ice-cream!

At 8 PM I had an appointment with Ana and Jim in their home for dinner and Anas friend Marcos was also invited.

Ana and Jim had cooked a lovely BBQ meal and Marcos brought an awesome cheesecake :D

We had a lovely time and it was really nice to catch up with Ana and Marcos and finally get to know Jim as well.

Thank you, friends, for a lovely evening!

Enjoying days in the sun

This morning I had breakfast and relaxed some at home before I walked down to the city centre and later on Hotel El Sitio. I did some shopping. I got a beautiful, new Tommy Hillfiger purse and new sandals :D

Then I stopped by the Italian Ice Cream store and got myself a lovely ice cream with passion fruit and choco-amaretto taste. SOOOO Delicious.

Of course I ran into Ana outside of the store and she just laughed at me as she introduced me to this store just yesterday :D I guess she was thankful that I liked the ice cream she introduced me to :D I think without her I would have continued to walk straight past it without noticing that this store had become a new ice-cream store.

I spent several hours at the swimming pool, enjoying the sun, tanning, working a few hours in the shadow and reading. It was a lovely day.

I got home for dinner and spent the rest of the night at home with mami and papi :D

Hacienda Baru

Since we got home from the Night in the jungle trip and the Tree Climb tour we have spent our time relaxing at Hacienda Baru National wildlife Refugee, the home of Jack Ewing – the author of Monkeys are made of Chocholate. I bought this book 5 years ago and enjoyed its reading so much I HAD to visit the farm and the place I had read so much about.

Monkeys are Made of Chocolate is a series of short stories about the life on the farm, Ecotourism and how Hacienda Baru went from a Cattle Ranch / Rice Farming to an Eco-Tourism farm. Parts of it was also used for Cacao Trees.

The Cacao Plant.

At the Hacienda now there is a lot of Eco Tourism activities. Tree Climb, Night in the Jungle, A Butterfly Farm, An Orchid Garden, Bird Watching, Jungle Trails, Mangrove Walks, Night Hikes, Canopy and Zip Lines.

For  Recreational activities there is a gorgeous swimming pool and really nice condos. Our condo was really nice and spacious and we enjoyed delicious food from the cafeteria as well. The Hacienda is surrounded by beautiful Nature with lots of birds.

I enjoyed a lot to get to know the man behind one of my favourite books and stay at Hacienda Baru.

However we had to move on early the next morning to be in Sierpe in time for the 11:30 boat to Bahia Drake.

Hotel El Sitio

While I was enjoying a nice time at the local cafeteria at the Santa Rosa Mall my brother called me and said to be ready in 30 minutes because we were going to the beach with him and the family.

Woohoo. I didn’t exactly rush to get ready as Ticos are never on time. I just told him to let me know when they were outside and that I would come out then.

About 30 minutes after I was supposed to be picked up, my sister in law called to say that they are no longer going to the beach, hence I decided to go to Hotel El Sitio instead. Hotel El Sitio is a nice Hotel with a decent swimming pool and Swimming, tanning and relaxing is part of why I am here :D

I had a great time at the pool. I had time to read in my book, enjoy the sun and relax. It was quite beautiful.

I left at 5:30 and went home to prepare for joining Mami at her Rotary party tonight.