Kim and I traveled last month. We hopped on a flight that winged us southbound over Mexico, past Belize, across Honduras, eventually alighting in Liberia, Costa Rica. We were there for a week, which swelled into two weeks. Things change. Gotta be fluid.
Our compatriots, a young couple from Seattle and long-time friends, invited us to join them on the beach for a week, which - as I've already explained - expanded to two. The beach, Tamarindo, stretches north and south with a slight bow inward (east). There's a pile of minerals in the half-moon bay, a deposit of volcanic sediment that's gathered over the years into a rock - Isla Capitan. It's not much of an isla, but it's there - breaking waves and steadying the crush of the Pacific. Nick and Faye and we and several other friends settled into our home for the week (two). Sundowners on the veranda. Dinners on the beach.
The house, half-way up a steep hill from town, perches on the side of a cliff. The walk into town is not long, but it is steep. The walk to beach's end lengthens a morning (or afternoon) walk to roughly 3 miles roundtrip. The first quarter mile steeply down and the last half mile steeply up. One may stop for waffles along the way, if one so chooses. We chose a couple of times.
I've been bothered for some time with the word unique. It seems people want to express degrees of uniqueness, which isn't technically possible, unique being - well - unique, one of a kind, singular, like no other.
Kim and I along with Nick and Faye snuck off for a quick overnight stay in Monteverde, a village in the mountains which, inexplicably, has paved streets, but only gravel (pitted and washboarded and pounding grave) approaches from every direction. It takes about an hour from whichever point of the compass you choose to reach Monteverde over rough passage.
Monteverde is unique. By extension, Costa Rica is unique. Unique on the earth, I would think. East, along the caribbean side, rain forests blanket the hills. West, along the pacific, there's dry woodlands. Up top, along the continental divide, there's Monteverde and it's cloud forest. The flora and fauna change from east to west, I'm not sure how many microclimates there are, but it's a lot.
People who say rather unique or very unique are missing the worth of the word.
Kim and I returned home last week. We shared our extended layover in Dallas with my pal Frank and his girlfriend. He delivered us to the departures doors after two fantastic meals and a good night's sleep. We then made our way back to Nashville at 39,000 feet.
Re-entry is not always easy. A week away can be hard, two days of travel for 4, maybe 5, days of relaxation. It usually takes me 2 to settle in, which leaves only 3 (at the outside) to enjoy, but there's the stress of packing the last day. In reality a week long vacation affords maybe 2 days of rest. Two weeks, though Two weeks - it seems to me - is the proper duration for an escape. You get several days to rest and it costs you the same two days of travel.
Re-entry from this little vacation was not too bad. I have managed to shake off the travel and gently settle back into the work. Re-entry from this vacation was lovely, actually. I'm back. Let's go.