Chapter 1: The Quest for Pura Vida

What I Did When I Fell Off the Edge of the Earth

Guys!  Backpacking is crazy!  More than anything I’ve ever done, with the possible exception of power-reading through an especially intriguing book, backpacking takes me to a different world with different rules that can’t be communicated through a pixelated screen.  I promised lots of posts since I’ve been seriously slacking for the last couple of months, and they shall arrive.  I already have a couple written in a notebook and a lot more written in my head, so, time permitting, this blog is about to get a lot more active.  I have a lot to communicate, so for now, I’m going to go for a broad sketch of what I’ve been up to since I’ve been back in Costa Rica.

In no particular order, here’s what I did:

  • Climbed a dead volcano and swam in the lagoon in the crater (again) (but this time with my sister).
  • Rode (at least) 39 buses (or van-things or water-taxis) (I may have missed some, but I’m not counting again).
  • Got my open water scuba license.
  • Met people from Canada, Chile, Argentina, Venezuela, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, USA, Germany, France, Sweden, Ireland, Switzerland, Norway, UK, Italy, Spain, Israel, Ecuador, Brazil, Ukraine, Dominican Republic, Holland, Denmark (and quite possibly others that I’ve temporarily forgotten).
  • Bungee-jumped off a 143-meter-high platform.
  • Learned how to count to ten in Russian and German.
  • Became more familiar with a foreign city than I am with any major cities in Texas.
  • Jumped into a canyon (with a river at the bottom).
  • Crossed the border between two countries by myself on foot (twice!) (and almost unsuccessfully both times!).
  • Did a night hike up the highest volcano in Panama to see the light of the sunrise on both oceans (bodies of water, whatever).
  • Learned that it’s hard to entertain a 5-year-old with Disney music when she doesn’t understand English.
  • Ziplined through the cloud forest.
  • Heard stories from people whose lives are completely different from mine, but completely normal for them.
  • Rode bikes and ate pineapple on the beach with my best friend.
  • Saw a 70 meter waterfall.
  • Learned how to successfully ask directions in Spanish without sounding like a crazy gringa.
  • Went whitewater rafting.
  • Survived police knocking on my door at 4:30 am.
  • Saw a sloth family.
  • Met someone with the same birthday, and someone else with the same name as mine (both guys–story of my life).
  • Stayed in 8 different hostels.
  • Learned how to say “see you later” in German and French (and arguably Swedish).
  • Woke up multiple times in time to see the sunrise.
  • Made friends with people who don’t speak English, and people who speak four or more languages.
  • Got so sick I couldn’t go to Nicaragua.
  • Decided that Texas is still my favorite place I’ve ever been.

I may have left some out–like I said, it’s been crazy.  There will be more details to come in later posts!


4 thoughts on “What I Did When I Fell Off the Edge of the Earth

  1. If this is just the stuff that you can remember off the top of your head then I can’t wait to hear about the other stuff! Jealous doesn’t even BEGIN to cover how I’m feeling right now! Haha. Glad you’re having/had a good time though :]

    1. Thanks! Yeah, I was thinking about it, and these are the big, flashy adventure points, but sometimes the best stuff is more subtle doesn’t really look as good on this kind of bullet-point list, like a good conversation with my sister or a twenty-minute nap in a hammock.

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