MACAWS!! We saw scarlet macaws on our very first day! Think about when the Blue Angels fly in formation…that’s what it was like. We were buzzed by a flock of big colorful birds. That was a pretty incredible welcome to this new place!!
It’s official: We are really traveling now!
It was one long day, starting with an early, early wake up in Atlanta, but our trip is really started now! After what seems like a lot of talking and blogging…we finally left the country. We caught the four hour flight from Atlanta to San Jose, Costa Rica. Interestingly, Delta insisted that we arrive 3 hours before our international flight. We almost spent more time at the airport than on the plane. Kind of funny… kind of.
We were told repeatedly that we couldn’t enter CR without “proof of onward travel”, which typically means a plane ticket home. In our case, it was a bus ticket to Panama. Aaron spent hours getting those tickets. It was stressful and a total pain, but with all the warnings on the Internet forums of close calls and people having to pay big bucks to fly back home, we took it seriously. So, of course, we zipped through check-in and security in record time. A bit dissappointing when everyone took us at our word that we would, in fact, leave CR within 90 days. If only would have asked to see the confirmation because we were ready!
After arriving in CR and easily navigating customs we had to find Denny’s. Yes, Denny’s of Grand Slam Breakfast fame. From there the shuttle would take us to Tamarindo. We stood outside Denny’s for a couple of hours and then the bus came. They had told Aaron he had purchased “the last two seats” but maybe they meant “the only seats”. With that we had a private driver the whole 5 hours to Tamarindo which was just incredible! He and Aaron practiced english/spanish. We got a few hours of lessons on CR politics (multi-party democracy), education (mandatory), and local cuisine (fish, rice, fresh fruit). Thank you, Miguel and Interbus!
“Yes, yes, that’s all well and good,” we hear you cry, “but what about those macaws???” They came when we stopped after 3 hours for a break from the drive. Stretching our legs, getting some snacks and viewing macaws…pretty darned nice.
Let the adventure begin!