To celebrate the new year and escape the holiday madness in town, we took a trip with friends to Rincon de Vieja on New Years Eve Day. It was at the top of the highlight list since arriving a month ago.
Two weeks ago, we were delighted to meet another family of five staying at the Luna Llena and attending CSI. Our kids lovingly refer to them as “The Canadians,” and spending time with them has been a great addition to our two week holiday celebration. It has been refreshing for Ben, Jacob and Abby to have interaction with other kids and for Matt and I to have like minded parents having an experience similar to our own. In addition to attending Spanish and surf classes together, we have been playing at the beach and going out to dinner, while sharing stories and celebrating the holidays.
Carolyn and Mark invited us to come to Rincon de Vieja with them on Saturday, so at 6 AM all ten of us piled into a van for a two hour drive inland toward one of the many volcanoes in Costa Rica. We spent the day tubing down a river, zipping through the canopy, climbing up the canyon walls and riding horses through the forest. Although it wasn’t a short drive, the change in scenery was so dramatic that I couldn’t believe we were only two hours from the beaches of Tamarindo.
The whole day was surreal, but the best part was watching the kids. They were excited, adventurous and bold. We deal with the same parenting “drama” here as we did at home – the bickering, the demands and whining. They are getting stretched every day – and in the end Abby still wants me to carry her and a 50 lb. tube down a steep canyon trail in the middle of the Costa Rican wilderness. Alas, for better or worse, she is forced to walk down the trail and then jump into the canyon river with a river guide who doesn’t speak English. 🙂 Ah, she is being stretched the most, but she certainly arrived as her best self on Saturday when she zipped off through the trees all by herself. I asked her over and over again, “Are you o.k? Are you scared?” Her ear to ear smile said it all.