Good morning and greetings, Supreme Court nominee fans. Each week, I parade to the the cyber confessional as we take a look at something from the skies and byways of this cold water paradise called Santa Cruz. Well, today, travel and leisure lovers, we are headed to an exotic land with warm water, a place where iguanas, jaguars, ferraris and crocodiles live amongst the rain forest like ebony and ivory live in perfect harmony.
In late June, I loaned my brother Brad my most valuable possessions, my son Jason and daughter Aimee, and they passported south on a trip of a lifetime to Costa Rica. Despite Aimee’s camera breaking on day two, they still took hundreds of pictures and were left with stronger impressions then Dana Carvey performed on the Tonight show last week. Today we present you with part one of two guest blogs. So without further ado, in her own words, soon to be 12-year-old Aimee Jennifer Gilbert.
When I think about my trip to Costa Rica, the one word that describes it is AMAZING. It was an exotic, wonderland full of creatures I had never seen up close.
My favorite animals were the Capuchin or White-Faced monkeys. As you can see in photo #1,one of the Capuchins is eating a coconut. They were literally right above our heads as they ate. The best part was that after they were done eating the fruit, they would drop the peels on us.
Capuchins are omnivores and eat fruit, crabs, bird eggs and small lizards. Their job in the eco system is to clean fruit off the forest floor. One day, as we were going to the beach we looked up and saw 15 of them in the trees! My uncle said he saw one trying to unscrew a light bulb that was attached to the tree. Another had a baby on its back. Then, all of a sudden, they all jumped off the trees and ran across the street. It was a great, modern, third world country moment.
The second picture is the best from our whole trip. We were on a hike witnessing huge spiders, exotic birds, and forest crabs, when we noticed three sloths in a tree, which is very unusual because you rarely see sloths together. We took this picture with the help of our tour guide by using a telescope.
This three toed sloth was coming down a tree when it turned to us and smiled. Sloths are very lazy and can sleep in one place for three days straight! They curl up around branches or hang by their hands and stay still so predators don’t notice them. Sloth’s hair is often covered with a coat of blue-green algae during the rainy season because it provides a camouflage!
The third picture is of a Jesus Christ Lizard. They are named that because they are known for crossing still waters in a nearly upright position! We saw this beautiful reptile sitting on a log at the beach on one of our hikes.
The last three pictures are butterflies from our first hike in Arenal, which is the home of a very active volcano. Costa Rica’s butterfly species make up approximately 90% of all Central American butterflies. The first butterfly photo is of an Owl butterfly. This butterfly is different from other butterflies because of its unique tan, black and blue wings. It is occasionally a pest to bananas.
The The next butterfly is a version of a Blue Morpho. The Blue Morpho is the most common butterfly in Costa Rica. Seeing all the butterflies was incredible and something I will always remember.
That’s all for now and I hope you enjoyed this guest blog. Back to you dad.
Thank you, Aimee. As you can see, I did not include the always popular “editors comment” after each paragraph, as I wanted Aimee’s voice to come through proud and clear, although I was as tempted as South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford on a fact-finding tour in Argentina.
On to the late night boys. “Sonia Sotomayor’s confirmation hearings are under way. It’s interesting. Political experts say that if Republican senators attack Sonia Sotomayor too harshly, they could alienate Latino members of their own party. This may explain with Republicans opened every question with, ‘As a huge fan of Santana.’” –Conan O’Brien “Everybody knows Sotomayor will get confirmed. Even the GOP can’t take her on, because she is the first Hispanic nominated to the Supreme Court, and they don’t want to offend Latino voters. That’s why they no longer talk about the ‘border fence.’ It’s now called the ‘welcome wall.’” –Stephen Colbert
“Today, the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor got under way. And, of course, people have opinions on both sides. Critics of Judge Sotomayor claim that she has a bias against white people. But this morning, she proved them wrong by showing up at the hearings wearing a Coldplay t-shirt and carrying a yoga mat.” –Conan O’Brien “People in New York are especially excited by Judge Sotomayor because she comes from the Bronx. In fact, Judge Sotomayor famously presided over the landmark New York City case, Shut Up vs. No, You Shut Up.” –Conan O’Brien
“I thought it was fascinating how the New York papers covered the All-Star Game and Obama throwing out the first pitch. New York Times said that Obama threw a perfect strike. Daily News said he threw a ball. The New York Post said he was making out with Kate Hudson.” –David Letterman “This weekend is the 10th anniversary of ‘SpongeBob SquarePants.’ President Obama recently said SpongeBob is his favorite cartoon. He loves to watch that silly little guy run around and say crazy stuff, annoying everyone. Reminds him of Joe Biden.” –Craig Ferguson
“You remember Dick Cheney, who was the Vice President for eight years with George W. Bush? And we didn’t think much about Dick Cheney and then one day he goes hunting, boy, that changed everything. Well now it turns out that for eight years, Dick Cheney had a secret hit squad to assassinate al Qaeda leaders. And the team was unbelievable. Here’s who was on the team: Lee Marvin; Jim Brown; John Cassavetes; Telly Savales; and Trini Lopez as Pedro. Now here is the thing. Here are the two sides of this. The ying and the yang. Idea was we’d kill off al Qaeda leaders. That’s the ying, I guess. The yang is completely illegal. But, listen to this. Before you make your judgment, before you decide, if it weren’t for Dick Cheney and his secret assassination squad, Osama bin Laden would be alive today.” –David Letterman
So that’s it for part one of riding the roller Costa Rica. I would have loved to been riding shotgun on this photo journey, but I’m highly allergic to piranhas. Next week it’s Jason turn, as we’ll swirl inside the mind of a 15-year old point guard on his first adventure outside the country.
So enjoy the long summer days and we’ll catch you down the third base line. Aloha, mahalo and later, Derek Jeter fans.