The great thing about people visiting (besides the fabulous company) is the chance to revisit the places we love and discover new ones along the way. We planned a trip to Volcan for Monday and left fairly early keeping an eye on the weather. It turned out to be a lovely day; a bit overcast, but quite comfortable. Dennis almost didn’t make the trip, as he popped his knee dancing a few days earlier and was pretty much confined to his chair with his leg elevated on ice. Knowing how directionally impaired I am, he was convinced to drive and so we set off to do a bit of sightseeing.
First stop was Sito Barilles, an archeological dig with beautiful trails to walk and a bit of history to absorb. While Dennis sat in the car with his newest spy novel, we enjoyed the walk and met some of the local wildlife. I nearly tripped over the biggest toad I have ever seen (tip: never get complacent in the jungle) He or she was the size of an overinflated football. They can move quite fast when necessary, and we watched while the toad made for a safer hiding place down the hill. There were birds galore, which is always one of my favorite things to do. Some so tiny, that the butterflies flying around were larger than these tiny little black and white birds. We came across an almost transparent butterfly that was so delicate and beautiful.
Wandering back to the car, we again attempted to find Racquel’s Ark. Did I mention we couldn’t find it earlier. Finally, 2 phonecalls later to friends who had been there, we arrived and met Racquel and a few of her friends. For the uninformed, Racquel has been rescuing orphan and injured animals for about 8 years. She is a beautiful soul with a passion for what she does. I felt like I had met an old friend. We learned a little about the group while we got to experience the animals up close. They have such distinct personalities and you could feel the love the animals have for Racquel. A very curious coyote, a rather grumpy aging kinkajou who didn’t like having her sleep disturbed, a funny affectionate coatimundi named Brownie who insisted on sitting on your lap, and the sweetest sloths on the planet. For those of you who have never held a sloth, I can tell you the feeling is amazing. Holding them was a joy. They hug you and look at you with their trusting eyes and you just melt. I am in love. I can’t wait to visit again. We did have a very comedic encounter with a wily racoon. Sierra had set her sunglasses down to play with some of the coatimundiis and the racoon stole her sunglasses. She tried to retrieve them, but he ran away and brought them over to his pond to examine them more closely and give them a wash. He was not giving them up. Racquel had to go in and get all alpha on him to get them back. He was very disappointed when she took them away. We were gifted a bunch of hydroponic lettuce from Racquel and were on our way. While not required, we did make a donation to help with her feeding and other expenses. I was very impressed with how healthy the animals were, how clean and roomy the cages were, and how trusting the animals were. Were it not for Racquel, these animals would not have made it in the wild.
We were a bit disappointed that Burricos, the Mexican restaurant folks have been raving about was closed (Dennis more than the rest of us) so we headed to Mana, another fav spot for lunch. We then made a quick trip to Cerro Punta, which was beautiful with the low clouds and mist hanging about.
Everyone enjoyed the ride home and we capped the evening off with a tuna dinner, a bit of rice and Racquel’ lettuce. Sierra serenaded us with some lovely renditions of music by Train and Adele. A perfect end to a perfect day.
“ONE TOUCH OF NATURE MAKES THE WHOLE WORLD KIN.” William Shakespeare