Caño Negro and American Lingo

December 27, 2014 - 12:37 am No Comments

Another early morning. A few of us joined another group of tourists for the bus ride out to Caño Negro. Our guide for the day, this one also named Jorge, picked us up and did his best to coax some enthusiasm out of a sleepy group of tourists that don’t know each other. I hate being forced to be cheerful at 7am.

Sleepy Cat

We got to the Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge and got in our boat for a ride up and down the Río Frío. The Río Frío should have been called Río Marrón.

Río Frío

Green Iguana

Three-Toed Sloth with Baby

White-Faced Capuchin



The most impressive thing was Jorge’s unbelievable vision. See that? On a branch in the shadows? It’s a snake. See that brown ball in the trees behind the leaves? It’s a sloth. See that gray lump on the side of that tree? It’s a great potoo. See that dot in the sky? It’s a white-billed parrot, and you can see that it’s carrying a stick to build a nest.

Jorge could have bullshitted the whole thing, and no one would have known. He was very knowledgeable, but all the wildlife was too small and too far away too appreciate. Most others seemed to like the tour, with oohs and aahs every time Jorge pointed to a barely visible animal, so maybe I’m just being a grump.

Jorge Takes Tourist Photos

The lunch they served, though, was great. Some sort of chicken with sauce that wasn’t quite curry but was very rich and flavorful. It’s the second time I’ve had chicken like that here. Wonder if I can snag the recipe.

Sleeping Indian & Arenal Volcano

Headed back into town and met up with the rest of the group. Marie, the pregnant German, told us that she had a great time whitewater rafting. This was a topic of conversation in the group and get the whitewater rafting folks angry when Jorge mentioned it to them. When does it become dangerous to be doing that stuff?

Jorge took us to the thermal pools just next to the expensive Tabacon Resort. They’re just next to the road and free. I’m not a cold water person, but all these warm pools are fantastic. I could sit in them for days.

For dinner, we headed back to the same restaurant as yesterday. My Costa Rican waitress friend was has happy to see me again.

Me and the Costa Rican Waittress

Then off to get some drinks. All the TVs in these bars show a Costa Rican version of bullfighting, where dozens of guys in brightly colored t-shirts run around and dodge a seriously pissed off bull. There is no competition, no points, no winner, just a thrilling wait to see someone get mauled. Jorge is hinting that he might want to go to one of the events back in San Jose for New Year’s.

We got into a discussion about American lingo. I taught Jorge what a “muffin top” is (there were examples at the bar). Taught Marie, the German, the words “wedgie” and “party pooper” and then introduced her to Flula. Went on to tell Marie that her people are serious and boring and have no sense of humor, and she mostly agreed.

Tomorrow, a drive through the mountains and to Monteverde, another nature stop with a good selection of adrenalin activities.

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