Dear Tropicana

Dear Tropicana Marketing and Packaging Department-

What the hell were you thinking? From a business perspective I understand the need to keep your brand fresh and current. However, removing the iconic orange from your packaging is one of the stupidest moves that you could have ever made. Did you not test this packaging with test groups? Get feedback?
Old packaging= Iconic
New packaging= Generic
Look at the packaging that you decided on, the brand name is barely visible, the logo that you are known by is no longer there and quite honestly the muted colors just make it look cheap. When you change packaging the idea would be to improve upon your current package. When you are a well known brand you want to keep what you are known by, and most companies would maximize it. Isn't your orange with the straw a Trademark, why would you abandon it?

I would bet that this change in package will diminish your market share, as marketers you really should be aware of this. My recommendation would be to return to your old packaging, eat the losses of the changed packaging, and next time you feel a need to mess with an icon, think twice.


The Doctor says I am a little behind on this post, being that the package change occurred over a month ago, and to be honest I generally avoid orange juice because the acidity messes with my stomach, but when I do drink OJ, I think fresh, and I think Tropicana. Its almost nostalgic as when I see the orange with the straw I think back to the old commercials. As you can tell the package change rubs me the wrong way, and I honestly think it is a really bad marketing decision. Maybe they should have talked to Coca Cola who made the huge mistake of changing the way their 2 liter bottles were made years back resulting in consumer fury, and them having to change back to the normal two liter bottle. This is just my two cents but I really do think my two are the same as millions of other peoples two cents and it will result in Tropicana losing sales.

Once again, just saying...

Guess What Honey...

So I was riding home on the Metro from work on Thursday, I was completely engrossed in my Advanced Readers Copy of The Angel's Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafon, and then I realized that the next stop was Metro Center where I needed to get off. As we approached the stop I stood up and expected the woman sitting on the outside of me to let me past. Instead the woman rolls her eyes lets out a loud sigh and stays in her seat...

I kindly say, "Excuse me this is my stop."

Crazy lady sighs again, "Well I just sat down"

"I'm sorry I didn't notice, but I need to get off here"

She doesn't move, "Well I am not standing up because I just sat down, how could you not notice"
"Once again I am sorry but I need to get off" I say as I begin to climb over her.

"Your an asshole, how dare you not notice me."

"Guess what honey... take your stupid sunglasses off and take a look around, the world doesn't revolve around you," I say as I get off the train and the doors close for dramatic effect.

I give her the evil eye as the train pulls away, I just can't believe that she wouldn't move out of the way for me to get off the train, I am never rude to people when they are trying to move on a train, there are tons of people cramped a small over packed cylinder. And by the way there is no sun in the Metro so you don't need sunglasses!

Pura Vida

Pura Vida= Pure life

It is not only the motto of Costa Rica but a term used in general conversation and a motto that many Ticos live by. Visitors take on a pure life when they visit. A life without all of the outside interuptions. Pura Vida also takes on the meaning of "everything is well," "life is good" and "living the good life."

While the Doctor and I were in Costa Rica we lived the pure life, the life without the constant interuptions from the cell phone, a life without a watch, and a life maily without TV. We became much more connected with our surrounding and the people around us. We had conversations, and dinner without our blackberrys vibrating off the dinner table.

We were able to enjoy life more when we lived by the motto of "Pura Vida" we were free to enjoy ourselves without the general contraints of everyday life. An afternoon lounging by the pool was not interupped by constantly checking emails. And the best part is we didn't miss it at all.

Looking back over the week I am thrilled that I had the opportunity to go to Costa Rica and enjoy a new place with an amazing person, a person who pushed me out of my comfort zone and forced me to experience so many things that I would have never done. While I missed laying on the beach and reading a book I got to do so much more.

I was lucky to go with somebody who pushed me out of my comfort zone for food as well, I ate fish! For those of you who read my blog you know I am picky... I had amazing coconut crusted Mahi Mahi at Agua Azul and another fish at Kapi Kapi. I didn't eat them as my meal but I tasted them, its progress! We paired all of our meals with an amazing bottle of wine and truly enjoyed a "Pura Vida."

I can't wait to return to Costa Rica, maybe next year, or maybe soon for a special event!

An Unexpected Suprise

Our trip is coming to an end, this morning we left Quepos on the 7:45 flight (again on a tiny plane) and arrive in San Jose for our 6 hour lay over. The plane from Quepos landed at a different airport so we need to arrange for transport to the San Jose International Airport.

Once we land in San Jose our driver meets us to bring us to the hotel. While in transport we ask him what there is to do around the airport, there is shopping and food, and McDonalds. We have five hours until our flight leaves and are not sure that McDonalds will suffice. As we approach the airport we see a sign for Vulcan Poas. The Doctor saw the smile on my face and asks me if I want to see if we can go to the Volcano. We ask the driver and he ensures us that he could get us there and back by noon. He will charge us a little extra but we decide that it is worth it and much better than spending five hours in the San Jose Airport, so we are off.

Our driver is a little bit of a tour guide as we head up the mountain and he stops in a few places and points out some interesting facts, lets us take some pictures, and revels about how beautiful the volcano is. I am as giddy as a school girl as we approach the volcano, and you can even smell sulfur as we get closer. We get to the gate pay the fee and the driver finds out that you can even see the volcano and crater today. There is apparently only a 30% chance to be able to see anything. The Doctor and I practically run up the path towards the Volcano. The clouds are rolling in and I want to see the crater, we have come this far, I really hope we can see it. As we approach we notice a number of people taking pictures and staring in awe at the big hole in the ground, that’s a good sign right! As we approach the fence we see the lagoon in the crater and smell the sulfur gas being emitted from the volcano. I am shocked at how powerful it is to see a hole in the earth as it belches gas out. Not only has the cloud above the volcano lifted, but my dark cloud may be lifting as well. We are incredibly lucky to have time to come to Poas but to be able to see the Volcano in its entirety is very lucky.

We then make our way up the path to see if we can see Lagos Botas, a lake that was formally a volcanic crater that has been filled with rain water. It is pretty much a big puddle! We are hoping that we are able to see this too. And we are lucky once again, we reach the puddle as the clouds begin rolling in, but it is a darn pretty puddle and we are able to take some spectacular pictures.
As the clouds (of gas caused by the volcano) roll in we make our way back to the Volcano just to take one more look. As we approach we notice that all you can see is whiteness. We were very lucky with our timing and it was a great way to end our vacation.

Pura Vida!

Pictures are up on the travel blog...

I Broke Twelve Toes

I broke twelve toes today… well not exactly 12 toes but it feels like I broke all of the toes on my feet after a day of walking, and hiking up hills in flip flops. We woke up around 8:30 today, went to breakfast at the hotel and then hopped onto the bus down to the park. The Doctor wanted to take another walk through the park in hopes of seeing howler monkeys and another sloth. He does love his sloths.

We got down to the park, the Doctor drank out of a coconut and we found a path that we had not discovered in our previous visit. We were hoping that it wouldn’t have as many people on it and we would have the opportunity to see more wildlife. Well, apparently our eyes are not as good as our guides and we walked all the way to the end of the path and halfway back before we spotted a single animal. However, about halfway back after I broke 5 toes, we heard a rustling in the trees and when the Doctor looked up he spotted a sloth slowly moving down the tree. We broke out the video camera, and digital and started taking pictures, as people passed not noticing the animal above them. Once we got our fill of the sloth (they are slow and rather boring to film after all) we moved back to the main path in hopes of seeing more monkeys. Unfortunately, no monkeys were spotted.

We approach the beach where we saw the deer and decide to set up shop for a bit. This was a very peaceful beach on Sunday when we came to visit, but today it was a bustle of activity. We set up, put on suntan lotion, and head into the surf for a bit. The waves are still rough and we get thrown around a little bit more then we expected. As the waves threaten to get our electronics wet we return to our towel and decide to head off. We walk down the beach a bit and decide to take some pictures of the rocks as the waves hit. Of course I make the Doctor climb some of the rocks so I can take some pictures. Once again a beautiful scene, there have been so many of them over the past few days in Costa Rica.

We continue walking through the park, not spotting many animals but enjoying the trip. We then emerge on the main beach, and decide since the tide is low enough to venture out to Playitas, a more secluded but beautiful beach down the shore about twenty minutes on foot. The waves are crashing in but they are not nearly as high as they were the day before. As we approach the cross over to Playitas over the rocks we notice that we are going to have to scale the rocks and venture through the waves in order to get over. We decide to take a chance and though a difficult task, we conquer the rocks and make it to the other side. The force of nature is tremendous on this side of the rocks as the waves pound the shore at several different angles. The waves are over fifteen feet tall on this stretch of beach and while we venture into the waves for a bit we are thrown around violently and decide that it would make sense to head back to the hotel. The only problem is as we look over to the rocks the water is over our heads, we can’t escape. We would have been stuck at the beach for hours with the exception of this nice foreign couple who offered to show us up the trail to the road.

They say the trail is a little steep at the beginning but it’s not too bad. As we begin we are climbing a vertical wall of rock (yeah not too bad my butt), we make it up that stretch (once again in flip flops) and then they tell us not to look down because it is a straight fall about 200 feet to the rocks below and we have to cross a path that is only about 12 inches wide. I pass the backpack off to the Doctor who is a lot less accident prone then me and somehow make it across. A few more obstacles and we are up on the road, of course that doesn’t mean the fight is over because roads in Costa Rica are not much more than dirt paths. After about a twenty minute uphill walk I exclaim, “I think I broke twelve toes today” the Doctor is confused!

Tomorrow sadly is a travel day… until then Pura Vida

Pictures are up on the travelblog...


Our last planned activity of the vacation was surfing. Now I had a feeling that I wouldn’t be that good at surfing, and then when we got out there and the waves were ten feet tall and the surf instructor was worried that we might have trouble with a lesson in these conditions I knew it was going to be a bad experience.

We were picked up at 2 in the afternoon about an hour before high tide at our hotel in our instructor Todd’s “Red Rocket” a beaten up Honda that he bought 8 years ago for 2000 dollars, I am not sure I would have paid 2000 colones (4 dollars) for it. And he brings us down the winded road to the beach. He starts by giving us an in depth lesson about the beach and waves and where they come from. How they reached this beach and how you can tell waves apart. I was so confused but tried to look like I was paying attention. At this point I was more worried that I would end up falling under the board and having the fin slice my neck. The Doctor on the other hand could not wait to get out on the water and try to stand up on these ten foot waves. If you have been following this blog then you are not at all surprised by this.

We finally get into the water right as high tide is hitting and there is not really any beach left. The first wave hits me hard but I am able to stand up to it until my board rides the wave back into the trees and pulls my ankle out from under me. I fall face first into the next wave. Hmm, I am not sure that this is going to work out well. But I get out into the water and begin paddling out past the break zone, finally I feel a bit more comfortable and I am able to balance on my board and actually sit up. He gives us a quick lesson on what to feel for when the wave catches us and when to stand up.

The first wave he wants us to catch comes up and we begin paddling to shore. The Doctor catches the wave and is able to get to up on his board. I get thrown from my board head first towards the shore and then pummeled by the waves until I am not sure which way is up. Thank goodness I have spent many years in the ocean so I know not to panic and in a few seconds my head pops to the surface and the board yanks me backwards. So this time was not my turn to be successful so I begin to paddle out again with the Doctor. A couple of waves hit us hard but we make it out again and watch as Todd rides a wave into shore. Apparently that is how you are supposed to do it. Since I have no idea what to do when I wave comes I wait for him to come back and then I try to catch a second wave, that kicks my ass, and then a third which I had no right to even try. It kicks my ass so hard for a moment I almost panicked because I had no idea what was going on and I had swallowed about a gallon of salt water. I come tumbling into shore. I rip the safety cord off my ankle, hold back the urge to throw the board and walk in back up to the red rocket and place the board in front of it. I then go back into the water without the board. Take on the waves without an anchor and have a blast watching the Doctor stand up on his board for some huge waves. I was very impressed.

Finally after about another 30 minutes of me in the water getting beat up by some huge waves the Doctor tries to take one wave and gets clobbered, he tumbles off his board and is then hit by a set of waves that wouldn’t stop. When he finally surfaces he decides that he has had enough and returns to shore with his board and the instructor. The instructor buys us a beer and we talk for a bit before we return to the hotel in the red rocket. It wasn’t my idea of a great time but we made the best of it, and I did enjoy being in the water, I just didn’t enjoy having the board strapped to my ankle. It was fun to watch the Doctor get up on his board though.

Tomorrow is supposed to be a day at the beach, we will see how that goes.

Until then, once again… Pura Vida

Once again photoes are up on the travelblog...

A Whale Pushed Me Into A Volcano

Then there was the snorkeling trip on Wednesday. That was a late minute addition to the schedule when we decided against taking a trip up to the Volcano because everybody who had been up there said you couldn’t see the volcano because of the rain and fog.

Luckily the snorkeling adventure left at 1pm so we were able to sleep in, all the way until 8:30!
We got up and went down for breakfast by the pool and then decided that since we had the time we would go do some souvenir shopping down by the beach. The entrance to Manuel Antonio beach is a 25 minute walk down the hill or a cheap bus ride down. We waited at the bus stop for a few minutes and then I decided that we should walk down to the beach. It was only about 100 degrees under the red hot sun so why not! The walk down was a bit rough but nothing compared to when I didn’t want to wait for the bus back up.

Down along Manuel Antonio beach all of the locals have little tents set up with the goods they are pushing, and I am not kidding when I say pushing… lo siento pero no necessito una vaca… yes I did mean to say I don’t need a cow. Once again the Spanish comes at us fast and furious and while I have enough conversational Spanish to get through this the poor Doctor has no idea what is going on half the time. Throw in the fact that we have to pay everything with colones (monopoly money) and it is a very demanding morning.

We end up buying a few little things for ourselves, a vase and mask and a soda and water, and a drum for my sister because that’s what she asked for and then started heading back up the beach back to the bus stop. On the way back up a woman whistles at the Doctor and exclaims in Spanish… es como un angel! Yeah, ok crazy lady he is like an angel! When we get back to the bus stop and the bus had not arrived in five minutes I decided that it wouldn’t be such a bad walk so we start walking, 30 minutes later we arrive back at the hotel dripping sweat from everywhere, needing a shower desperately!

It is almost 1pm and we are frantically packing our backpack to meet the tour group up in the reception area of our hotel for the snorkeling trip. Not sure what we needed we overpacked a backpack and were out the door. We loaded into another bus and were on our way to the dock where we learned that a marina is being built, however the engineers failed to take into account that the marina was being built on sand so it is now sinking. Silly Tico engineers you say, yes but the engineers are American!

We get onto the boat which is a 12 person sailboat where the Doctor realizes he is going to need Dramamine to survive and then we are off on a seven our sail around the Pacific ocean. The first thing I notice is how stunning the coastline is as we pull away, the rocks jutting out of the water with waves crashing on them and the volcanic hills rising from the coastline with light white clouds puffed up around them. I obviously snap a couple hundred pictures this trip. There really is no better way to appreciate the landscape of this country then experiencing it in all the different ways possible.

About an hour or so into the trip the captain slows the boat down and then tells us to look off to the right of the boat as we look to the right we see some gulls and then two dolphins jump out of the water in front of another boat, and then two more and before you know it there are about 20 dolphins surrounding the boat. Jumping and playing in the water and swimming around. The water is so clear that you could see the dolphins swimming a few feet beneath the boat before the jump. It was amazing.

After about 20 minutes watching the dolphins (which we weren’t able to get a picture of) the boat stopped and told us if we wanted to we could jump in the water. So we all hop off the boat and go for a swim in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Of course Greg has to ask how deep the water was, apparently it was about 500 feet deep where we were swimming. I immediately swim towards the rope attached to the boat. Then we get back on the boat for our trip into the bay to do some snorkeling.

Once we get there we get a quick explanation on how and where to snorkel, as well as how to use the equipment. I immediately recognize a problem, I always breath through my nose, and then my nose is clogged by the stupid goggles. But I give it a try and jump into the water and swim towards the rocks. The problem with the bay we are snorkeling in is that there are about 6 other boats and 200 other fat white men and women and their children snorkeling there. Quite honestly it is way too busy to really see much except for fat people in swimsuits. As the Doctor dives down he is able to see some fish below the water. I dive down and I can’t breathe and my ears pop. The Doctor calls me over to a location by the rock and tells me where to look. As I get ready to dive down and see some fish a whale swims over me pushes me out of the way and into a huge chunk of volcanic rock attached to the sea floor. I gouge my shin open and scream at this stupid whale… and by whale I mean 600 lbs woman.

After a little while longer and seeing a few fish I make my way back to the boat with the Doctor and they have dinner ready for us. We sit enjoy dinner, exchange experiences (I only saw like 3 fish) and I nurse my leg back to health, or at least stop it from bleeding. And then the sun begins to set and red yellow pink and purple hues are scattered throughout the sky, the clouds are kissed with colors and a streak of orange cuts the water. It is a miraculous sunset and once again I make sure to take hundreds of pictures. After the sun sets we head back to shore on the boat and our snorkeling adventure comes to an end. We spend the rest of the evening at the hotel relaxing by the pool and enjoying the company of the others on the snorkeling adventure (except for that one couple that didn’t talk) And then Thursday was surfing.

Surfing was not my cup of tea but I will talk about that a little more tomorrow.

Until then… Pura Vida

The pictures are up and posted on the travel blog

Whitewater Rafting Too

So with the Doctor's crazy scheduling it has been a very busy but enjoyable couple of days. We went white water rafting on Tuesday and then we had an afternoon/sunset snorkel trip yesterday.

White water rafting was another early morning. Our driver picked us up at 7:30 in the morning, brought us to the office to pick up the raft and pay and then informed us that we were the only ones signed up to white water rafting with their company today. Again, lucky… we were going to have a private white water rafting trip. After all of the gear was uploaded they brought us up the hills (with another Costa Rican Car Massage included) to the start of the course we would be taking. It is the dry season in Costa Rica so the river is very low but it was a good place for a beginner like me to take their first white water rafting excursion.

They gave us a quick explanation of how we would be rowing down the river, where to sit, what to do if somebody went overboard etc etc. I was sure that I was going to be the person who went overboard but I was actually more concerned about the fact that I don’t know my left from my right and our lovely instructor Maria wanted to make sure that we know that it was imperative that we did exactly as she said in order to make it down safely. That means if she yelled out right forward, left back I needed to know which way to paddle. I found myself going I am on the right I am on the right I am on the right the entire trip down the river, and when she screamed out right forward I still had to stop and think about which way I needed to paddle.

We made it through the first few rapids, one of them backwards and I started gaining confidence, after all I had not been thrown from the raft yet. A few more rapids and I was actually having fun. It was afterall a nice paddle down a river in the middle of the rainforest. Maria pointed off to the right at a waterfall that fed into the river. A waterfall over jagged rocks surrounded by butterflies and flowers. She asked if we wanted to have a snack beneath this waterfall and had us paddle to that beach and walk up to the waterfall. Stunning is the only word that comes to mind as we approach the waterfall, she tells us to wade in because the fresh water feels great on your shoulders after you have been paddling for a while. We wade in move towards the waterfall and get a great neck massage. I am so disappointed that we didn’t bring down the camera for this trip but we can always remember it and maybe describe it to you one day. As we enjoyed the purity of nature she prepared some pineapple and cookies for us to eat and some water so we had the energy to paddle the rest of the way down the river.

We leave our pictauresque location and head back to the boat. Put our equipment back on and paddle our way through a bunch more rapids. Then the water is calm. She asks if we want to go for a swim among the rocks and fish but I opt not to because my entire goal for white water rafting was to not end up falling out of the boat and I would have succeeded if Doctor hadn’t pulled me violently from the boat almost causing one of my contacts to make the journey down the rapids ahead of me. The water was crisp and cool and we could see the trees and animals around us. There was not a single other person in the surrounding area.

Once the trip was done and we were exhausted and exhilarated at the same time we loaded all of the equipment into the van and they told us we had a bumpy hour ride into town where we were going to grab lunch. We were very confused for a moment expecting it to be four in the afternoon when it was actually only 11 am. They drove us back into downtown Quepos and brought us to a little shack called La Cubanita for an authentic Costa Rican lunch of rice beans, meat, yucca, platanos and fresh squeezed pinapple juice. It was an amazing lunch and it was all included in the tour. They do have tourism down to an exact science in Manuel Antonio, gotta make the customer feel like the trips were worth it.

After lunch they drove us back to the hotel and asked if we needed anything else, we were contemplating the beach and they offered to drive us down, but because it was high tide we were unable to get there so instead we relaxed by the infinity pool overlooking the rainforest at our hotel. It wasn’t a bad option!

No pictures this time unfortunately, but I will post tons of pictures from our sunset snorkeling tour we did. Until then… Pura Vida!


Yesterday was Zipline day! Otherwise known as the canopy tour of the hills in the rainforest towards the interior of Costa Rica.

We were able to sleep a little bit later today and then woke up to have breakfast and meet up with our driver who packed us into a van with 10 people to the office, where thank goodness, they moved us into a larger bus and started driving towards the hills.

We were introduced to the Costa Rican Car Massage yesterday, its when the car goes off the paved road and continues on the dirt road through the African palm trees and then some teak trees, and then some hills, well lots of hill, and across some creeks. The Doctor who usually gets sick with my driving on American paved roads somehow managed to not get sick on this bus trip. That doesn’t say much for my driving believe me.

Once again we luck out and while we are with a large group we have the friendliest and most informed tour guides we could hope for. Through our one hour trip up the hills our tour guide gives us information about the area and the uses for the palm trees the teak, points out the history behind some areas and what the landscape looks like during the wet season. We even get to see a small ocelot (adorable little jaguar kitty) and a crocodile in the river off the side of the “road.”

When we arrive they give us some fruit and some instructions on what is going to happen during the ziplines and canopy tour. There are 10 lines, one bridge, and two places to repel. The guides are all very funny, they joke with us and make us feel comfortable. The landscape is once again beautiful. We are up in the hills with creeks running down, flowers and vines. The canopy of a rainforest is really an amazing place.

Before they put us on the ziplines and the hike they lull us into a false sense of security by taking us down into a butterfly garden that they have on site. With over 40 species of butterflies in one small area it was a flutter (pun intended) of activity and flashing colors as they flew around the contained area. Then it was time for us to get our harnesses on and “fly” through the rainforest. They gave us a quick instructional seminar and then we were on our way.

I made the Doctor go first when it was our groups turn up, I have to admit this was once again out of my comfort zone but after my first line I was addicted. However, on the first line I did forget to pick up my feet and crashed them into the deck and was lightly made fun of, but it was for my own safety. This first line was the easy one, all the others got progressively faster and if I had done that on another one I could have broken my foot.

By zipline number 3 the Doctor was pushing his limits and doing the zipline upside down. As the adrenaline junkie of the group he was entertaining everybody as he flew hundreds of feet above the canopy upside down. I was not that crazy. Then there was the Tarzan swing, not really scary especially since you are tied in, maybe 85 feet but it was still fun, and it was even more fun to watch them push the man in front of me who was afraid of heights and watch him flail about (is that mean of me?) There was then a place to repel, pretty much a straight free for all down the tree except you are tied up to the lines. This was the only place that I was even remotely scared, but by the second repel I was laying all the way back and letting them drop me.

We finished up and they had a home cooked Costa Rican lunch ready for us complete with Yuca my family would have fought over.

Overall it was great scenery, an amazing experience, and just plain ole fun. And we got two Costa Rican Car Massages included in the price.

Today was white water rafting, I will write about that tomorrow. Until then… Pura Vida!

Again, the internet is a problem today so I will post pictures up on the travel blog...

Sloths (and Monkeys too)

I am going to try to write this entry now for the second time.

Yesterday we went to the Manuel Antonio National Park, we had to get up really early and meet our driver at 7:30 in the morning to bring us down there. We were very excited about our first excursion in Costa Rican and looking forward to seeing all of the animals that inhabit the area. Once our driver got us down to the park we met our guide for the morning, Ricardo. It turned out that booking the smaller private tour was the best investment.

Ricardo started out by walking down the path and setting up his scope pointing at a tree. Both Greg and I were confused because all we saw was a tree, we had no idea that the branch that was jutting out from the tree was actually a rare and beautiful bird. This is when we realized that we were going to have a great tour and see tons of animals. As we walked into the part Ricardo explained the path we were going to take and then asked us if there was anything we really wanted to see. Greg of course has been looking forward to seeing sloths and monkeys so he let Ricardo know. Ricardo said that he would do his best but that yesterday there were no sloths spotted in the area.

We walk with Ricardo and he talks about primary and secondary forests and the plant and wildlife of the area. He stops at irregular intervals and sets up his scope and spots things that we would have never seen with out his expertise. Over there was a crab, on that tree was an iguana, over there another bird. He talks to the animals too, he stops and hears a Tucan, he replies back to the Tucan, it calls back. He is trying to lure it out of the trees so that we can see it, but as he does this people begin to gather around us. I resist the temptation to shoo them away but soon Ricardo finds it hard to resist that same temptation. Unfortunately, because of all the extra noise in the area the Tucan retreats and that is one of Ricardo’s only failed attempts at getting the nature to obey him.

As we continue walking about twenty minutes in Ricardo spots something in the trees, he stops and sets up his scope, he admits that he had a good feeling and as Greg peers through the scope he sees on of the 8 sloths that we will eventually see on the tour. They really are quite cute although I assume that the claws would hurt you if you got too close. After taking some amazing pictures we continue. There is an iguana, some creepy looking bugs on the tree (I admit I forgot the name) and then he hears in the woods a howler monkey, again he makes an attempt to talk to the animals to lure them out but he is not successful again because of the extra people who begin to surround us. We do spot the trees swinging and hear the loud bellow of the howler monkey as he retreats.

But have no fear, we did get to see an entire group of white faced monkeys a little bit further down the trail, first there was just one and then there were twenty white faced monkeys climbing the trees and all around. It really was a surreal sight, we were truly one with nature as the monkeys didn’t even care we were there. They continued looking for food and climbing as if there wasn’t a group of 30 people in their space.

As we continue down the path you can hear the ocean, and then you can see the beach. As we turn the corner Ricardo points and we see a beautiful deer on the beach, he is walking among the people and then he walks up to a three year old girl and licks her hand. It is the second surreal sight in as many minutes and it is only disrupted by the mothers screams as she notices her daughter being licked by a deer.

We take a quick break and then continue onto the tour. We see tons more animals including the Jesus Christ lizard that can run on water. I am shocked at what we see and how little I would have seen if we didn’t have the best guide in the world.

It really made us both realize that nature surrounds us and if we don’t pay attention we will miss the beauty of everyday.

I am posting pictures on the travel blog because I am having trouble posting them on here.

The Flight Over

We landed in the San Jose and cleared customs, exchanged some money and then went over to the "terminal" that we were flying out of to Quepos which is the airport near Manuel Antonio. We had to weigh ourselves with our luggage to make sure that we weighed the right amount. We waiting in the outdoor terminal for a little bit and then they called us to board our plane, took our laminate pass that they reuse and we walked outside.

There are a number of planes outside and the six passengers from our flight all follow the captain as we walk towards the smallest prop plane I have ever seen (although the Doctor says the one he jumped out of was smaller and I now understand why he jumped out of it). As we boarded and the captain helped us fasten our safety harnesses I began to panic a little, this was so out of my comfort zone. The Doctor caught this on video. As we began to move I let the panic slip away and kept telling myself that this was an adventure, a once in a lifetime experience.

The takeoff was a bit rough but once we were in the air I can honestly say that I have never experienced a flight that was so thrilling, the natural beauty of Costa Rica as we flew just slightly above the mountains and hills was breathtaking. As we got closer to Quepos you could begin to see the Pacific Ocean and the islands off coast. Looking directly down you could see the tops of palm trees for miles. It truly was quite a glorious sight. And most importantly we landed safe, the pilot helped us off the plane and we were greated by very friendly airport attendants who spoke spanish at Greg.

It is very funny to watch them try to talk to him and then I have to answer. I think they immediately think he is the one who can speak spanish because he is darker then me. Next post will be about the forest we walked through today, another beautiful site that we won't soon forget.

Until then...

So Much For Packing Light

We are all packed and getting ready to head to the airport for the 4am flight on Taca Airlines. We have to be at the airport at 1am. We said that we were going to make sure that we packed light because we have to pay for anything over 26 lbs on our putt putt plane to Quepos on the last leg of the trip. Well, what we said and what we did are two separate things.

The Doctor was making fun of me for packing 14 t-shirts yet he packed the same number and we are heading to the airport with two big suitcases I have my backpack with his computer and the Doctor has a backpack and another carry on bag. I am sure we will be paying extra for the luggage.

We changed our money got some travelers checks and cash, called the credit card companies and changed my phone to the international plan. Everything is checked off of the list so it looks like it is ready to go.

And again if you want to see more pictures and other stories check out the travelblog...

Until we get there...

Pass It On

They just put bright neon stickers in all of the faculty staff bathrooms at the university. They say...


So I am passing it on!


I kind of feel like I am cheating on my blog, but because the Doctor and I are going away next week to Costa Rica I created a travel blog for us. That way we can both post stories and pictures. Also, the site does make it easier to post a ton of uploaded pictures from the vacation.

That doesn't mean that I will not be posting here. As a matter of fact on my posts the text will probably be similar on both blogs there just may be more pictures on the travelblog site.

The address is:

Check it out and talk to you all soon from Costa Rica (flight leaves 4am Saturday)

Oh Hell No

So one of the doctors "friends" was writing on his facebook wall to wall yesterday, here is the conversation...

Hi (Doctor)! Who's the nice man? Cheers, (Jackass)

You must really not know him he's a bitch! lol! what is the deal with gay men? It's terrible....I think I should move. Auy suggestions? (Jackass) PS He does have quite a few can do better guy! (Ouch- and by the way my recomendation is not DC)

Hey that's not nice he may be a bitch but he's my bitch and I love him so be nice. (The sweetest thing he could have said love you too)

just kidding guy! I'm just jealous because I'm single....He's a cutie (uh huh if you are kidding then don't say such mean things asshole)

And finally here is my response via Doctor's wall... and keep in mind, don't mess with me because I am not nice...

Wow i guess I am not the biggest bitch- your friend (Jackass) seems to win... wait I can take back my title, it seems he doesn't even have his own picture as his profile picture... I wonder why, wrinkles? or just plain ugly?

On A Lighter Note

Every morning I walk past the Argentinian Embassy here in DC on my way to work, a few weeks ago (one of those warm days) there were two people sitting outside drinking coffee, and one of them was crying...

I suddenly felt the urge to throw my arms opened and burst out into song...

Can you guess what song?

I know S can!