I was laid up in bed for two days with severe diarhhea and fever. I know this is too much information but you need to know the good the bad and the ugly and this was bad and ugly.It is not the water that got me sick because Costa Rica water doesn’t get you sick as it is treated like in the states but rather my theory is the pineapple I bought at the butcher shop and asked him to cut up for me that did it. He had no gloves on so I think “raw meat germs” got on my pineapple slices. Needless to say I am firing the butcher.The first day I barely made it to the pharmacy I was so weak and a woman who did not appear knowledgeable recommended pepto bismol.Well that didn’t stop it. The second day I was sipping vegetable broth and coconut juice and went out and met Cooley the mid fifites Rasta man that showed me the hotel when I first arrived in Puerto Viejo. I believe that if you just put out your needs to the world that some loving person will meet them. I told him what was ailing me and he got all excited that a simple pill would cure me for sure and gave me a long lecture on eating properly which he explained was to eat rice beans and fish for dinner ,having a big dinner every night.He swore this was the secret to why he looked younger then his years. I didnt have the heart to tell him he didn’t look that young to me altho his body is strong. He walked me over to the grocery store and I paid 30 cents each for little blue pills that sounded like “Ankara” and it took a couple of them but in 12 hours I got better .
By Friday I went to the poker game and won 70 bucks in all. In the space of an hour I went from being down over $40 to up over $120. At this point the natives were starting to become restless as I was running the table and taking everyone’s money and these things have to be handled delicately. Maurice wanted me to buy a round of drinks and Rex started non stop whining about this was his worst session in 3 months. I smiled and admitted it was an unusual streak of luck but pointed out that I had been losing up until that time. The dealer was a cute single blonde woman from England who I bought a drink and chatted with after the game ended.
The next day I decided to spend some money seeing some sights so I took the bus to Cahuita to go on a canoe ride and take a tour of the sloth sanctuary. The bus driver was rude to me in Spanish showing displeasure when I asked him if he would tell me when we got to the sloth place. Then a large Rasta man that I knew as he was the poker dealer last week, got on the bus and we started talking. He said I needed to pay more to the driver as I bought a ticket that only went part way. So it was my mistake and misunderstanding. Then the bus stopped and a policeman came on and demanded everyone show papers. I dont carry my passport only my passport card. He didnt seem to like this and asked me many questions so I had Rasta man “Anke” translate and finally the last thing I said to him was” I’m from Florida” and that seemed to shut him up and he gave me back my id. They do random checks as you pass from one district into another.Then some guy who may have been mentally impaired got on the bus, shook my hand and started singing as loud as he could into his arm.I have a video of it which I will try to post here.
At last I got to the sloth sanctuary where I took a guided canoe tour of the rainforest with two German girls and a local guide. These girls looked like sisters but as it turns out they were both traveling alone and had just met two days earlier and decided to travel together. I was quite impressed at their sense of adventure and also they both were fluent in Spanish and English.
We saw monkeys in trees. One monkey looked like he was going to piss on us.We went under a tree and had to duck it was so low and the girls were upset because there was a bat a few inches from our head as we went under the log it was just clinging there. The guide taught us many things about bananas and he said he would cut down a tree so we could taste some wild bananas which have many hard seeds in them btw.The only problem was I could tell that the tree was probably going to fall on us or actually the girls.I started to video this and sure enough the tree came crashing down on the two German girls sitting behind me in the canoe. Fortunately it was just the top few feet that hit the boat which were mostly leaves and the girls shrieked nervously and then burst out in laughter. Unfortunately ( and I am still mad at myself) when I pressed the button to stop filming, the camera actually turned ON at that time so I only thought I was filming. That video could have gone viral.
After the lovely canoe tour , which was in shallow water full of 18 inch fish and immensely beautiful, I went to see the sloth sanctuary. Sloths are very cute and lovable creatures.The adult sloths were NOT in cages but rather enclosures as they are not capable of jumping and can’t get out. They sleep during the day and metabolise food slowly but they are not lazy as their name implies .Giant sloths 2 and 3 stories high used to roam the earth.The picture of the statue in front of the sanctuary is actually to scale of how large they used to be. I include some pictures
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|man sings on bus.MOV