Costa Rica January, 2007

When AARP announced a new HR policy allowing (recommending, actually) a 4 week sabbatical (called, "Renew") for staff with good annual reviews and at least seven years of service), we batted around a couple ideas on how to spend the time. We decided upon a trip to Costa Rica in January. A return trip (after 15 years) for David and a new place for Sarah and Robert.

We got up early on the morning of the 11th for our short cab ride to National airport. And we had none of the silliness with the selectee list that we've run into before. So the flights to Atlanta and on to San José were without event. Sarah arranged for a driver to meet us at the airport and take us to Montezuma. Actually, the plan was: driver to Jaco, speed boat to Pochote, driver to Montezuma. But when we met the driver at the airport, he explained that the waves were too rough and we'd be taking the ferry in Puntarenas.

At any rate, after an early morning cab ride, a couple flights and a brief ride in a micro bus, Robert was happy to chase pigeons in the park in Alajuela while our driver, Max, got a quick bite of lunch (and we picked up some colones from an ATM -- we discovered later that most ATMs are only for use by their customers, Credomatic and Coopemex worked well for us).

You can click on any of the photos for a larger version, or prepend "big_" to the filename for a really larger version: http://kayakero-d/per/vac/jan_07/graphics/07_01_011.jpg becomes http://kayakero-d/per/vac/jan_07/graphics/big_07_01_011.jpg.

Alajuela, CR 1/11/2007. Alajuela, CR 1/11/2007.
Puntarenas, CR 1/11/2007. New to me, there is now a car ferry from Puntarenas to Paquera rather than just Playa Naranjo. So we met Max's brother, Lebo, in Puntarenas for the trip across the gulf of Nicoya. Robert was tired, but still holding up extremely well to the long travel day when we arrived in Puntarenas at sunset for the 6:30 ferry. After the ferry, drive from Paquera to Montezuma and short Land Rover trip along the beach from Montezuma to Ylang Ylang, we got dinner about 9:30. A long day with a lot of travel. But we woke up on the beach in the tropics the next day.