Hiking, biking, coffee and many more things...

Trip Start Feb 24, 2009
Trip End Aug 2009

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Where I stayed
Montaņa Linda, Hostel

Flag of Costa Rica  , Province of Cartago,
Tuesday, May 26, 2009

After having spend months with visiting beaches, lakes and rivers we thought time has come to say hello to the lush green central valley of Costa Rica. Fate guided me to the Valley of Orosi. After a horrible long busride to San José, a crazy taxi drive through an insane rain shower and 2 more bus rides I finally arrived in the not too turisty pueblo Orosi.
Getting off the bus I just turned arround like a prima ballerina.. amazed by the mountains and the thousands of coffee-fields, which surround Orosi. As the rainy season already started I just hurried to find my hostel, which I found pretty quickly. Montaņa Linda was supposed to be my, and from 2 days later on also Anjas home.  Visiting such an "unknown" area in the not high season explained why I was almost the only guest. Besides me there was a really and I mean really strange 50 year old Dutch and one Tico who comes every day after work to the place to catch up with travelers.
Knowing the life in the crazy party Guanacaste, it was a real treat for me to spend this first night alone and peacefull in my dorm. Which was a great idea as I decided the next day pretty spontaneous to rent a bike to explore the mountains, the lake and river. Run by a swiss couple it was really nice to get to talk to the owners of the bike rental. Franzi and Freddy are a couple who live for over 2 years in Orosi. Especially she seemed to long for someone German speaking to talk to. So I left with my bike tour an hour delayed with my stomach filled with swiss bread and ice tea. Her last sentence as she good-byeed me was, that there was a bit of the way pretty tough... on my ride to the blue bridge I just remembered her saying earlier that she already biked in Switzerland more or less professional.. uh.. so should I worry about the 25km way??? Well.. I just pushed it aside of my head and took off. After passing the bridge I turned left, the sun started to show and I started to take off my layers of clothes... step by step I was able to see more of the amazing landscape. Many professional bikers passed my way, strangely always in the moments when the way was to tough for me and I preferred to walk. After almost 3 hours I arrived at the Ruins of the vally.. which was a pleasure.. walking around in the shadow, watching the parrots and enjoying the peace. Remembering how far I still had to go, I quickly hopped onto my bike again... and then there it was: the big, long and really really upwards mountain. Aehm.. bueno... so I decidet to try to hitch hyke those crazy 5 km( !!!! who the fuck builds such a streets, and who recommends it for biking???).
Lucky me there didnīt come any pick up whoīd have space for me and the ( by now) bloody bike. So I started to push my bike all the way up. After 100m there was a crowd at the street... staring down the canyon. With a little worried feeling in my tummy I joined them and saw what happened. A car crashed down, almost 150m downwards was it lying upsidedown, looking nothing else then smashed. Horrified I asked someone of the crowd what happened with the pasengers. I donīt know how, but he pointed to 2 pretty pale looking people sitting close by. How they came out? No idea... but now I was able to go on pushing my bike, relieved. And then.. there was a little bus stopping, offering me to take me to the top of the hill. From up there it was just fun... rolling about 10km just downhill through the lush green nature with the smell of the coffee-fields in my nose. It turned out to be a really great trip. And I wouldnīt forget about the great weather.. because when I arrived back at the hostel i had a look in the mirror and was shoked. As there is no beach I didnīt expect to need sunblocker.. well, my skind said thank you and I was as badly burned as I never was before... When Anja arrived 2 days later there was no lovely:"hey, great to see you".. no got to hear " Gosh what happend to you? You look awefull!"... Yeah well I still have some blisters at my arms.. but itīs getting better :)
That day in the hostel I meet 3 Canadian guys who seemed a liitle bit geeky.. but very nice. That night we all tok some beers, the Canadians the Dutch and Adrian the Tico. We had a great view from the open windows of the bar right into the mountains with itīs many lights of the small houses spread all over.
Plan for the Thursday was to meet up with Franzi and go into the mountains to visit Nano, a real back to the roots Tico. After leading me through green fields we climed up a waterfall, all the time chased by her crazy dog Buddy and arrived finally at Nanos "house". In the middle of nowhere this crazy guy built a house out of the nothing. Showing us around and talking, talking, talking I just couldnīt stop smiling about this totally authentic man. After 2 hours of coffe trinking, listening to his anecdots and playing with his puppets we said good bye and I promised to come the next day with Anja, as I thought she just has to meet this person!
Back in the hostel we couldnīt do a lot as it was raining almost all day. So what do you do in such a situation? Right you send the guys to get some beer and start a drinking game :) When Anja arrived at 3 pm the 5 of us were already tipsy and more welcoming that we wouldīve been normaly :)
After having a look around the village we ended again in our bar...to let the evening die away.
The next day started with our trip to Nano. proud to remember the way through the jungle we arrived at his place. Seeing him again in action with such an incredibble passion talking about his country and his roots, we spent a few hours listening about Costa Rica, Coffe and his women stories:)
Afterwards he showed us around his property. offering us strawberries, moras and leafes from severall trees. Thus we almost rolled down the mountain back to Orosi. Visiting the hot springs- we felt a little betrayed as they were not at all hot and I left the water after 5 minutes freezing to death.But again.. we had a great, green day with spending the evening with our jumpers and scrafs, which really was the first time in 3 months!!! Moreover our canadian friends turned out to be a really great entertainment, as soon as they had some guitarrs in their hands. Going through all the song texts the hostel had to offer our crazy dutsh-canadian-tico-german group got really professional. That was just a totally perfect evening!
The next day we headded off to the mountains. One guy in our hostel, Alex from Switzerland, had some information about a Finka on the top of the mountains. Not needing to think about that for long, we also got packed jumped onto the Pick Up and drove with Manuel to his weekend residence. This really is a spexcial tip!!! Every weekend he goes to his little paradiese... doing some building work and runnig with his crazy dogs through the jungle. Aftter half an hour all the way up to the mountains we arrived at the Finka. This really was heaven!!! With a hammok, and our place remebereing of fairy tales like snow white... we just found one of the most peaceful places of the country. Still we didnīt have to spend the next days without any luxus. Light, water and music.. all was available. Listening to the greatest songs of the past 30 years... chilling in the hammoks, climbing through the jungle, making fresh fish or just chatting with manuel about life... all this was just so special and not at least because of the effords Manuel made to make us feel comfortable. This one week was so very special. Meeting people like Franzi&Freddy, Nano, Adrian or Manuel and exploring the Central velley was definately a great the journey!!!

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