Favourite group photo from Quelenios
Hello fans! A special shout out this blog to the wonderful Mr and Mrs Gore who will be key characters in the blog at a later date as I’m sure you will see (what a cliff hanger!)
The reason the last of the Costa Rica blogs has not been posted for so long is that for the last 3 weeks our small group of seven have been exiled to the carribean coast location of quelenios, where there was no electricity, no ready drinking water and certainly no wifi! Owing to the boat ride, we could only leave our location by boat (obviously), and as it was ridiculously expensive we decided our budgets couldn’t cope with any trips out, as we’d already had enough excursions to make a jet-setter weep, and so resigned ourselves to three electricity void weeks.
It was an adjustment to be sure, the sun going down at about six each day meaning we were plunged into darkness for the majority of our evenings. However, once we’d seen off some rather unpalatable Canadians the day after our groups designated ‘foxy minx’ Carla turned nineteen, the lack of light meant we invented a lot of games to amuse ourselves, for example ‘truth or Boo’, a more boo-orientated version of truth or dare, which I would definitely count as “my bestest creation”! The fact that we were all together in one room once more was a huge comfort to everyone, Sam and Miguel seemed to have sorely missed each other and wasted no time in merging their beds, first into a double bunk (not here to judge), and then into a no-girls-allowed fort (definitely not here to judge).
Although it was raining season and so, oddly enough, very rainy, we had a lot of fun, laughing at some of the famous ‘Carla comments’, getting taught how to scrap and generally geckoing out. One of my proudest moments in scraps was after about 100 solid defeats in ella vs miguel scraps I beat him by managing to, when rugby tackled off my feet and into the air, nearly choking him to death in a thigh headlock (I don’t endorse violence but if any girl out there wants to indulge their inner tomboy then play at scraps, remember mud is good for you!). A week or so in we saw the return of Ashley and Lanie! Some of our friends at the Matapaulo project who spent their holiday time on a visit to see us! We were all so glad to see them, their crazy Canadian energy bringing a bright light to many a night.
The last couple of days brought sun and a lovely Danish volunteer called Olivia, whose rubber duck tattoo we can all agree is weird but very cool. Leaving Quelenios was very sad but it was compensated by the fact is was Miguels birthday! For the last two months he has been stoically growing his beard in a bet that if he didn’t shave before his birthday Boo and I would both buy him 5 beers each. Not only did he do this, but in the days leading up to his birthday he shaved it every morning into different styles, including mutton chops and a goatee, sideburns, handlebars, a plain moustache and finally a clean shave on the 12th – which was actually the most unnerving part of the entire affair!
After a mosquito infested boat journey to the bus we were greeted by our original driver from all those weeks before: Henry, who also carried a note from a Mrs Sarah Gore (Sams mum) who had flown out with his dad to see him before he continued his travels round South America. The note reminded us all of our parents too and there was a homesick moment on the bus, coupled with the realisation that our time together was coming to an end. After arriving back at San Jose though we all felt much better as Mr and Mrs Gore rocked up in person to take us to lunch! It was ridiculously generous but very much appreciated after so much rice and beans! Miguel also was treated to birthday shot of tequila, equipped with candle, which was the first but certainly not the last drink he had on his birthday!
After hunting down our last trits we all headed back to the hotel to get some down time before going out later that night to celebrate Miguels birthday in true Tican style. Fast forward to 3 am, several Imperials later, and you’d find me weeping in Boos arms as me and Miguel have to leave to get our plane to the next stage of our trip, a roadtrip across North America with Becca. If I thought saying goodbye to our six week volunteers was hard this was possibly even worse, as we had to be seperated from friends who we had been with 24/7 for three months, and it sounds cheesy but I mean it with every sincerity, feel like an extended and more trits-involved family.
While Carla and Gaby have returned to England, Sam has remained in Costa Rica for a few days before meeting a friend from the Venezuela leap and travelling round South America together. Boo is also traveling and flew two days after us to LA where she is meeting her cousin before flying to Fiji, and later New Zealand. After only knowing Miguel and Becca since we met in San Jose we all decided to join Becca in going to the USA before returning home, and are having an awesome time as we hear everyone else is too! All that’s really left to say is that this experience had been incredible, not just for the things that have been seen and the things that have been done but for the people that have been met! So to you guys wherever you are and if you’re reading this miss you and see you soon! Thank you to the leap and thank you for reading! Next stop sunny Mexico, stay tuned!
View from the plane