Monday, November 17, 2014

Santa Teresa

While everyone at home was spending the weekend getting snowed on in below freezing weather, I spent the weekend with my wonderful friends at the beach where it was pushing 90 degrees!  Not to brag or anything... ;)

Last week was the first full week of school I have had in awhile.  Even though it was five days, it flew by!  On Monday and Tuesday my teacher was in the States so I was left in charge of the class (with a sub of course).  My teacher and I had planned out everything the week before so I wasn't worried about it at all.  Everything went great and the kids loved having me teach them.

Wednesday my teacher came back but the students had a presentation to go to which took up the first two periods.  A bunch of people from the bank came to present to them about money. They got to do various activities such as being a doctor or soccer player and got "paid" for their duties in paper money.  They then had to go to the bank to deposit it.  The bankers talked to them about credit cards and other banking functions.  Even though it was all in Spanish, I understood the vast majority of it.  Before coming here, I would have said listening to Spanish was my weakest skill when it came to the language, but that is definitely not true anymore!  After the presentation they had a quiz and then Spanish for the rest of the afternoon.

Thursday was our field trip and Friday flew by as well.  They had Spanish in the morning followed by art, a test, and then the last of their standardized testing.  Although it went quick, I was definitely ready for vacation by Friday!

Brittany, Darcy, David, Sophie, and I left Santa Ana around 5:30PM in our shuttle so we could make it to the ferry in Puntarena before it departed the dock at 8.  It was the same ferry we took over the Gulf of Nicoya to Montezuma a couple weekends ago so we were familiar with the process.  Right before we had reached the ferry, our driver had to slam on the breaks.  Sophie and Darcy literally went FLYING forward into the seat in front of them.  Seat belts aren't a big thing here like they are in the states but I had caught myself.  Sophie and Darcy were both fine but we could not stop laughing at how funny it had been.  Our driver apologized profusely, we had to keep reassuring him everyone was fine.  We boarded the ferry and sat up on top again to feel the cool air.  A little boy sitting on the bench facing us had gotten a hold of his mom's phone and started taking pictures of Brittany.  She posed for them as we watched and laughed.

By 10PM we were in our next shuttle for the second leg of the trip.  I personally thought the road from the dock to Santa Teresa was the worst of all the roads we have driven on.  I actually think that the roads had more holes than actual driving space.  Anyway, we checked into our hostel and went to our room.  Right outside the door there was a huge grasshopper! Lengthwise, it was probably about as long as my middle finger, if not longer.  David thought it would be funny to bring in the room and tease us with it.  He was wrong.  It was not funny.

Saturday morning we woke up and had breakfast/snacks that we had brought with us.  Once everyone was ready, we made the short hike down to the beach.  We laid our towels down jumped right in! The waves were crazy.  They were so big which meant there were a lot of surfers.  We had a blast jumping in them (or maybe I should say getting tackled by them...)  At one point, Brittany and I severely underestimated the size of the waves coming at us.  We jumped but apparently not high enough because the wave was still a good foot over our heads.  Both of us went down but came back up soon after laughing our heads off, despite all the water now lodged in our sinuses.

After spending some time laying in the sun, I went on a walk with David down the beach so I could collect some shells.  The beach stretched on forever.  I love walking on the beach because there are so many little critters to see.  There were crabs of all sizes, and even some hermit crabs!  At one point during our walk there was a large pile of rocks, however if you stopped and stared at it you could see a bunch of moving rocks.  Turns out the rocks were covered in hermit crabs.  Most of them were pretty small but there were a few larger ones.  It was cool to see how well the crabs and hermit crabs blended into their surroundings.  I was so worried I would step on one since they were so hard to detect.

After the beach, we took the long way back to our hostel, hoping to find something to eat since it was already late afternoon.  We ended up just getting smoothies with plans for a larger dinner. Once we had all showered and de-sanded to the best of our abilities, we quickly walked back to the beach to see the sun set.  Santa Teresa is said to have one of the most beautiful sunsets, and it most certainly was!

From there, we went to a restaurant on the beach for dinner.  They had 2 for 1 drinks, so Sophie and I each had a margarita which went great with my Chicken Parmesan.  One of the stray dogs came in and sat with us for dinner.  Plopped right in between Darcy and I, we couldn't help but fawn over its cuteness.  We went back to the hostel and hung out for awhile before falling asleep to a peaceful nights sleep.

Just kidding.  It wasn't so peaceful.  I woke up to Sophie and Brittany talking somewhere around 2AM.  They sounded concerned so I automatically assumed there was something in the room, given our history with hostels and all.  I just prayed it wasn't another skunk.  With the three of us awake, we tried to figure out what it was.  The girls had heard a bug-sounding noise so we had an idea what to look for.  Sure enough, we found a giant beetle the length of my pointed finger and the width of my big toe.  If it was just a bug, it wouldn't have been so bothersome, but the fact that it could fly....we weren't havin' any of that!  All of a sudden it started flying and we all screamed and jumped back into our beds.  We squealed again after finding it under Brittany's bed which woke up Darcy and David.  Then it was flying again making us scream once more.  Sophie and I finally spotted it on Brittany's swim suit hanging off the beds and since David was now awake, we recruited him to get it out of the room.  With us girls all huddled on mine and Sophie's bed, David took a shoe and swatted it off the swim suit and onto the floor.  He then proceeded to whack it with the shoe until it was outside.  With the nasty bug out of the room, we went back to bed.

Sunday morning we woke up, got ready, and went into town for breakfast.We found a nice little restaurant with what sort of felt like air conditioning and ate there.  By the time we left Santa Teresa at 11AM it was 84 degrees and we were happy to be in the air conditioned shuttle.  We took the bumpy road back to the ferry, the ferry back to Puntarena, and then the shuttle back to Santa Ana.

Not ready for the weekend to end, Darcy, Sophie, David, and I went to Multiplaza to see a movie.  If you haven't seen Let's Be Cops, I highly recommend it.  I can't remember the last time I laughed so hard at a movie!

As I am writing this, I have just completed my second to last Monday in my school here.  I know I say this every time, but I cannot believe how fast time has been going.  13 days and I will be headed back to the states.  I am excited to be home but not ready to leave the friends that I have made here!

You can find all travel posts from Hey Dreamer Blog here.

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