Day 5: Tranquila

Hot Springs
On a trip, sometimes, one’s guard is taken down. New York City teaches us to be very weary of our surrounding wherever we are. But unfortunately, we took the “country” lifestyle a bit too far and ran into a little trouble. Anna ended up getting robbed the night at the bar. I find myself very lucky that my bag wasn’t robbed as our bags were next to each other under the table and we were not by its side. It was an unfortunate matter and we both regretted it. No matter how safe and secure you feel, you should always be aware. It was a mistake that we both learned our lesson that night.

We cancelled our third trip to Playa Jaco, a touristy beach town to relax and recover in La Fortuna instead. I was very glad we did not go because I did not think I could do another day of travel. And we would have only had a few hours on the beach before rushing back to San Jose to catch our flight. It was a blessing in disguise, this robbery because it helped us to cut back our spending and relax and rethink. Remembering our tour guide pointing out the free hot spring near our hotel, we ventured there in the afternoon and fortunately found it after a short 15 minute walk along a lonely stretch of road with no sidewalk. Jared, the man I met the night prior, had told us to not bring our camera because it had been said that things would get stolen when you put it under some tree while going into the water. After the previous night, it was a wise decision. Jared and I agreed to meet at 1PM but he had warned me he was still unsure of his bus ride to his next stop so he might not make it to the hot spring. A part of me really wanted to see him again while another part of me steeled myself not to be disappointed if I didn’t see him, which turned out to be the case but I wasn’t too upset. Que sera.

There were other people already at the hot springs, including a few local. We only carried our towels so we didn’t worry too much as we placed it on a nearby rock. A stream of cold water flowed beside the hot springs so at one point, they joined and you get a mixture of cold and hot at the same time. If you sat between the two, you could feel ice cold water run behind your back and scalding hot at your feet. It was such a strange sensation. Anna and I finally relaxed, the steam whirling around us and intoxicating our senses. The heat at points exhausted me and I almost felt faint. But at the same time, it made me stop thinking. I did not think of work, friends, family, even my puppy. I did not even think of myself. My mind was in a meditation mode: a completely blank canvas ready to be written on again.
Hot spring
Hot Springs

When we left the hot springs at 3, we were dying of heat exhaustion. It was a good thing there was a nearby restaurant to go to. We ate so much fruits and water before heading into town. It was a gorgeous blue day and we were really hoping to see the lava so we decided to get food from the super market and eat on the patio. While in town, we stopped by the Rainforest Cafe that one of our tour guide recommended. Costa Rica is known for its coffee, so we had to go to a coffee shop. It was such a cute place and the coffee list was so long. Instead of hot coffee, we opt for the more creative coffee. Anna had ice cream espresso where you pour a shot of espresso over ice cream and I ordered a macchiato frio which is ice macchiato. Iced coffee is not like what we think of here in America. It’s not coffee, ice, and milk but coffee with ice cream, which turns out is amazing!

We stayed in town a little later before heading back to our B&B. Anna and I just chatted on the patio until a strange creature came flying at us. It was the biggest fly/moth ever. At first we thought it was a hummingbird. But no! It was white and black stripe body of a caterpillar with moth-like wings and it was aimed at us. Anna ran hiding and I was holding a loaf of bread as if it were a bat to ward off the creature. We found ourselves prisoner of our room that night. It was the funniest night yet and Anna found herself arming the entire room with bug spray. Note to self, bring bug spray for the rooms or get a mosquito net.