Saturday, November 22, 2008

Costa Rica

We are here in Playa Hermosa, Costa Rica and it is beautiful and nice and warm without being too hot. When we were here last, we went during the dry season when all the grasses were yellow and ground seemed parched. Now, it is the tail end of wet season and everything still is a luscious green, so it almost looks like a different country to us.

Travel is exhausting and traveling with a toddler doesn't help. Joris ended up sleeping in chunks: 1.5 hours at the Seattle airport, 2 hours on the first flight and four hours on the second flight. He was awake in the Atlanta airport for the full 3 hours we were there. I slept for a little over two hours, combined and Jacob a little longer. Needless to say, we were all very tired.

Joris has been having a hard time falling asleep at night here and has developed at least four new stalling techniques. The first night, he did not fall asleep until 10:30pm, then was up again at 5:00am. Going to sleep now is a jolly mixture of screaming, jumping in the pack 'n play and asking for food, water and milk.

"Muh, muh!"

"You want milk?"


"Here it is."

Wa-wa, wa-wa"

"You want to drink some water?"


"Here is your cup with water."


On the plus side, Joris is really enjoying spending time with all of his grandparents. He asks for each one at different times and does not seem to have a particular preference for any of them. They all adore him and obey his every demand, so who can argue with that? It is really nice to see him interact with them.

Yesterday, Joris stayed home with grandma and grandpa while the rest of us went for a hike at a national park. We did not walk for a great many miles, but it was 2.5 hours of climbing up and down rock paths, over tree roots and crossing rivers. We saw some beautiful butterflies, leaf cutter ants and once a coati (raccoon like creature) crossed the path. We had a late lunch in Liberia and watched some folk dances in the town square (it was festival celebrating volunteers who help other people, according to Bernal, our driver). When we came home, we found a happy little boy, who had been a delight all day and apparently went down for his nap without any trouble.

Tomorrow we are supposed to go on an overnight trip to Arenal, an active volcano in the rain forest, a four hour drive from here. We are planning on leaving Joris with the grandparents again.

Getting a break from being with Joris all day, every day has been really nice. I did miss him yesterday when we were gone and worried, of course. (The big pool is always looming, although Joris has been really cautious around it.) When we are all hanging out at the house, I find myself having very little desire to get up and entertain the lad or deal with feeding or changing him. I am perfectly content to sit and watch him have a good time with everybody else. Over which, of course, I feel completely guilty. What mom doesn't want to play with her little guy in such a nice place?

Maybe it will return. Maybe I still need some time to recover from my two nights of practically no sleep. But, it seems like Joris, too, is happy to have someone other than myself to interact with. When I ask him if he wants to swing with me, or sit with me or do something else with me, he usually responds with "baba", "boopa" or "moma" (strangely enough, grandma no longer is "emma" - he is back to pointing and grunting at her although Jacob says he is trying to make the "gra" sound now).

Right now, Joris is playing with opa (boopa). Jacob and his dad are golfing and the grandmothers are walking on the beach. I'm trying to feel better and am functioning as the backup for when opa needs help. Last night I came down with a fever. All evening I thought I had gotten sunburned, but it turned out it was the chills. I had Jacob pile on sheets and sweaters on top of me, I was so cold! The fever broke after a few hours and it has not come back. My first thought was the flu, since Joris and I have still not been able to go get our shots (Joris has been having the never ending cold for 4 weeks and you're not supposed to get the vaccination if you're under the weather). With it being 3 days since we flew, I was afraid that I might have gotten it on the plane. But, although I don't feel a hundred percent yet, I'm pretty sure it's not the flu.

I should probably go check in on the boys now. There is wi-fi internet here, so I will probably be able to update some more. I'll use this as my travel journal of sorts, so feel free to skip reading since other people's vacations are not that interesting to hear about!

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