Read about Tours 1 and 2.
Tour 3: THE CLOUD FOREST MONTEVERDE: Anyone I asked said this place was magical. Animals, hanging bridges, and clouds for days, they said. Because the drive was so far up in the mountains, we decided to pay a private driver to get to Monteverde. The drive was supposed to take three hours but ended up taking five. Rain, accidents, and congested traffic impeded our progress every step along the way. The driver, by the way, was a maniac: honking his horn, slamming on the breaks at the last moment, and taking corners like it was the Indy 500. I was reading and practicing Spanish while K was watching every potential accident in horror. Finally, we arrived a bit shaken at our bread and breakfast.
When we finally spoke to the receptionist and got our key, it was a physical key on a piece of artfully painted wood. Sorry, I laughed at that. I didn’t ask to use the restroom I thought.
Anyway, the clerk asked about tours, and of course I said, “We’re doing The Cloud Forest!”
“That’s nice, really nice,” he said. “Any zip-lining or hanging bridges?”
Wait, now I was confused. “What do you mean? Everything I’ve read and seen shows the Hanging Bridges included with The Cloud Forest tour.”
So, you know I’d been looking at this tour for weeks. Pictures, comments, vlogs, blogs…no one ever said The Cloud Forest tour didn’t include the Hanging Bridges. The guy smiled and shook his head yes like, yeeaahhh that’s true, but it’s separate.
The tour I signed up for was just a walk through the woods with a guide. Whatever! Sign us up for the hanging bridges also. I felt scammed, but I didn’t come all this way to not walk those bridges.
We woke up early the next morning ready to walk through the cloudy forest. Oh! Breakfast was delicious by the way. It was all freshly made to order and one of the best parts of the Bed & Breakfast.
The van arrived to start tour and we were on our way.
“What are your expectations for the tour?” the driver asked.
Immediately, I said, “To see some clouds!”
And as soon as I said that I looked out the van window and it was the clearest day I’d seen since we’d been here. There were absolutely no clouds in the sky. None. It actually felt warm out.
We picked up two other couples to join in the fun. We drove further up the mountain, which I didn’t think was possible. Now we were ready to start the tour. As soon as we arrived, the guide got his tripod telescope and showed us a monkey in the trees, which was cool.
The guide then told us all about the birds and animals we may see. He pulled out a picture book showing all these birds. He even had pictures on his phone: birds, birds, birds.
The whole time, I was thinking I don’t care about birds, man??!!! I’m in The Cloud Forest, and it’s sunny and clear. No clouds. None. There were more clouds where we’re staying in Aserrí. We could’ve stayed there, drove around, and saw more clouds.
Then, the guide mentioned his favorite bird, the Quetzal.
“It’s so beautiful, hopefully we see one today. Everyone be positive, and it will happen,” he said.
I thought this guy bust one in his pants describing it.
Now, this guide was excellent. I don’t want to take anything away from him. He knew each bird by the sound it was making. All through the tour, he found amazing spots to see different birds, trees, and animals. Hearing the Quetzal’s metallic like cry was exciting. We even got to see a small waterfall and stopped to see colorful hummingbirds. The tour was great for everything…but clouds.
I didn’t think I was signing up for bird watching is all I’m saying.
That afternoon, we trekked back up the mountain even higher than before to walk the hanging bridges.
No clouds. None.
I couldn’t believe it. Eight different bridges, two miles walking at 500 feet in the sky, and no clouds. The bridges were great. I felt like Indiana Jones going over them. They swayed in the wind. The further you walked toward the middle the more the bridge shook and vibrated. It was fun. Now, just imagine that with thick, lush, omnipresent clouds all around you. That’s what I had to do. Imagine…because there were no clouds.
I’m done. I have to end it. Exhale here.
The next day after breakfast, we pulled out our laptops, and worked a little outside on the balcony at the B & B.
And in that moment, clouds rolled in so thick the mountains disappeared.
That’s my disappointment with a tour I enjoyed. Actually, I would do it again. I wasn’t even mad we had to spend extra money to not see what I came to see. Having these experiences and spending time with K is greatest gift I have ever received. Clouds or no clouds.
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