Monday, 15 August 2011

Zip wiring

After the white water rafting I plucked up the nerve to go on a zip wire. I chose the longest one in Costa Rica to start me off! It was terrifying! Although a very safe activity my knees were like jelly when I started off launching myself from the high platforms. After the insructors telling me on 4 different occasions that I was not braking properly they decided for safety reasons I had to have an instructor with me for the longest wires. That was fantastic because now I could relax and enjoy looking down on the forest canopy. The last part of the zip wiring involved no braking so I was able to do that on my own. The harness was turned around and you were attached from your back so that you could lie flat out with your legs behind and your arms spread out and fly like Superman. It was the closest thing to flying. It was incredibly high up and you went at great speed through the air for about 1km. Fantastic!

Saturday, 13 August 2011

White water rafting

Eventually decided to give this a go. I was going to try the 3/4 level but there was an upper age limit of 55 so opted for the 2/3 level which I assumed would be quite tame. How wrong was I! The minute we got into the river it was flowing really fast due to the rain and our first experience of a rapid was a level 3. I didn´t know what had hit me. Soaked to the skin and trying to follow the guide´s instructions of when and which way to paddle just confused me when he then shouted to get down. This meant we were heading for a collision so had to get right down in the raft. I managed to do that but remained in that position after he had told us to get back up and start paddling. Other raft companions didn´t seem that impressed but at least I hadn´t fallen out. We were on the river for 2 hours and it was a fantastic experience. Not sure I will do it again but never say never.
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The smile hides the fear! (Costa Rica)


Thursday, 11 August 2011

The rain forest

I have just spent 3 days in the Tortuaguera rain forest - where the jungle meets the sea. It was amazing. As you walked out of the jungle you were met by the giant waves of the Caribbean sea. I walked along the shore line paddling in the water. Going in any deeper would have been foolish as there were bull sharks waiting to come in to try and catch a turtle.
Some of the highlights of the visit were seeing 3 different kinds of toucan; sloths lounging in the treetops, a hummimgbird´s nest with 3 tiny chicks inside; numerous colourful birds and watching the giant green turtle emerge from the sea to lay her eggs. We were fortunate to see the whole process a truly wonderful sight. Also managed to kayak through the small canals in the  jungle which again was awe inspiring as the silence of the kayak made you feel at one with the jungle and I was able to observe a troupe of white faced monkeys playing in the trees above my head - magical.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

In Costa Rica

Sunday 7th Aug
After 24hours travelling I`ve finally arrived. Flight from London was great but it took 2hours to clear passport and immigration at Miami. Had a 5 hour wait for next flight but unfortunately it was delayed. In a bit of a haze when I arrived at the hotel last night but woke up this morning to beautiful view of San Jose which is surrounded by mountains. Delicious fresh fruit for breakfast and the waiter even found a tea bag for me! What more could I want. Off to explore the city today and then leave very early in the morning to the turtle nesting area and the Caribbean sea.

Monday, 1 August 2011

After60 -thenext10: The Courtauld Institute

After60 -thenext10: The Courtauld Institute: "Well I actually did get into the Courtauld for free today. It was certainly worthwhile as even the latest exhibition of Toulouse Lautrec was..."

The Courtauld Institute

Well I actually did get into the Courtauld for free today.

This view of the gallery is taken from Somerset House. It is a very small gallery compared to other world renowned art galleries but has some excellent exhibitions here. Being retired now I need to find ways of making the most of my finances so was delighted to find that entrance to the gallery is free on Mondays from 2pm. I was surprised that even the  latest exhibition of Toulouse Lautrec was free.

I really enjoyed the exhibition and spent a very pleasant couple of hours wandering around and then went over to Somerset House to their cafe to spend any money I had saved on a lovely cup of tea and cake!