Scarlet macaws, yellow orchids, iridescent butterflies that shift shades in the light. Under the Corcovado canopy, you could call it Hunter Green, but hunting here there is not.
A National Park since 1975, this region boasts 263 square miles of protected territory that extends along the southern boot by el Golfo Dulce. Beyond Corcovado Park, though, there exists other walks of life beside the footsteps of the shy jaguars I never saw.
In the humble town of Puerto Jimenez, rain-filled potholes punctuate the narrow gravel roads where people on bikes swerve to stay on the steadier path. Sometimes, they miss and splash straight through. But they are the type of people that no matter the circumstance, even if the sky is growling in relentless thunder, will continue onward as if it were a perfect sunny day. Pura Vida! They say: an ode to the good life and commonly a phrase that means many things including, enjoy your meal.
These are the people who wave you onward down a surreptitious road and lead you to the murky dark waters where crocodiles and caymans hang out. The mother I followed beat the water with a log as her daughters swung from the trees. She said she often comes to feed the crocs in the mornings. She only worries about the safety of her dog who sniffs around along the shoreline.
Exploring the Osa takes patience and tolerance; the unforgettable awe being the priceless trade off. Inspiration. Fulfillment. Joy.
One minute, you’ll be brushing away rodent poop from your pillow, the next swimming in a waterfall. One minute you’ll be looking down at your feet swollen and itchy with ant bites, the next looking up at monkeys that throw lychee at you.
There’s always that moment when the sky comes crashing down in rain and you hear it echo through the trees that you think to yourself, “man, this is wild!”
I’ve returned to the concrete jungle of New York City missing the pineapple and the breath of trees. This place too is wild, but not fit for monkeys.