A Return from Costa Rica

I just returned from a getaway to Costa Rica. What an incredible place! I stayed in 4 different areas within the country, my favorite being the southern pacific Osa Peninsula. In that part of the country, I stayed in an Ecolodge named “Lapa Rios” – a spectacular place! It is in the middle of a rainforest with no phone, fax, TV, or email accessibility. I was surrounded by life! I saw Toucans, Macaws, Parakeets, Hummingbirds, Iguanas, Monkeys, Sloths, Butterflies, Coatis, Tayras, Peccaries, Bats, Snakes, Geckos, Frogs, Hawks, Eagles, Kingfishers, Roseate Spoonbills, Quetzals, Vultures, Gurassows, Aracaris, Woodpeckers, Woodcreepers, White-tipped Sicklebills, Tanagers, Scorpions, Walking Stick Bugs, different types of Ants, Grasshoppers (the size of flashlights), Spiders, Dolphins, Crocodiles, Caimans, Crabs, Crayfish, and much, much more wildlife! No matter where you looked, something was there. A butterfly. A bird. A monkey. It gave me a sense of what life must have been like many, many years ago – before the industrial revolution and the population boom. When humans were more in proportion with the rest of the world. I could see how life depends on life – and it all works together. In the rainforest, Strangler Fig Trees grow from seeds excreted by birds and monkeys on the tops of other trees. Sometimes overtaking and killing the original tree completely (which then decomposes, leaving the new Fig Tree hollow in the middle where the old tree was), it becomes a home for animals, birds and reptiles to live inside. There are also Jaguars in the forest (which I didn’t see) as well as other cats, and I asked a guide if they ever attacked people. His reply was, “No. There is enough food in the forest that they don’t need to”. It really made me realize how out of balance most of the world is. Termites in the forest don’t eat homes, they eat dead tree branches – from the overwhelming supply of trees. In my “developed” environment, there are so many humans and not so many other forms of wildlife. No wonder pigeons, other birds, raccoons and squirrels often try to eat food left by humans. By comparison to what I saw there, they have slim pickings for “natural” food. And coming back to Los Angeles is quite strange. My first reaction was “where are all the trees”? Before I visited Costa Rica, I thought my neighborhood was pretty lush and full of birds. But there is no comparison with the life present in Osa. The air there is full of sounds (and sights) of birds, and Howler Monkeys, and insects, and life. Even at night, (which made me think of Times Square in New York – it was that noisy), it was an orchestra of insects, birds, animals rustling through trees and bushes, frogs, and snakes. I had to get used to that, but I must say it was pretty amazing. Overwhelming. How great to know there is still a place (even if it is so small as about 20 by 35 miles long) with so much diverse life in it. I hope it never gets cut down.

I hope I don’t sound up on my soapbox again, but it was a very strong experience – and I do love this planet! It is a bit jarring coming back, and in contrast, news of my CD seems so insignificant – but for me personally it isn’t!! Just letting you all know that I am progressing along, and still hope to release “Ready” before the end of next month!! I will keep you posted as I know more. I am biting my nails with excitement each day as I get closer to the release!

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