Vacation from our vacation

I’m not sure where the phrase came from, but I’m sure you, dear reader, have had the experience of getting back from vacation only to discover you need another vacation before going back to work. For the first time, Emily and I were able to pull that off! If you’ve been following along, you know that we had visitors for about ten days over Christmas and New Year’s. It was AWESOME. However, we were totally wiped out from having loads of fun, and needed some time with each other (and the dogs) to rest and ease back into normalcy. So, what did we do?

We went to hang out near a volcano that might still be active!

Obviously, since I’m writing this, we are fine. On the day we drove up to La Fortuna, the sky was overcast — seeing the area only on that day, one wouldn’t even know there is a volcano dominating the landscape. Luckily, the weather cleared up during our visit, so we got some decent volcano views from our hotel.

IMG_6677

Volcán Arenal comes out to play

After the long drive, we kept it mellow on the first day. We soaked in the hot spring at our hotel, napped, then we went out to Kappa Sushi. Is it the best sushi ever? No, but the sushi boats are cool and it was a welcome variation from our typical meals.

IMG_0057.jpg

Nice presentation.

High on our list of activities in volcano country was going to hot springs. We pulled out our trusty Lonely Planet guide and decided to check out Springs Resort and Spa. Staying there was not in our budget. However, anyone can get two-day access to their assortment of mineral spring-fed pools for two days for $60 per person. Not bad. The pools are fantastic – they range in temperature from about 80 F to 104 F, some have waterfalls, and in the central pool you can find the swim-up bar.

IMG_6620

There is no deep end in the pool with the swim up bar. Smart.

Our last day was great. We went on a easy hike at Arenal Volcano National Park, where we spotted a coati and a sloth and encountered buses full of overly helpful tourists. Emily’s favorite quote: “Just up the way on the left, you’ll see a line of leaf-cutter ants heading back to their nest. VERY interesting.” After leaving the park (of course), we got some great views of the volcano while driving on the north side of Lago Arenal. For dinner, we went to a great restaurant, Benedictus Steak House, which has fantastic views of the surrounding area, and a simple menu featuring meats from livestock raised on the property. To cap off the day, we returned to The Springs resort for our second day of hot spring soaking.

IMG_6640

Coati on the trail, totally in the zone

IMG_6650

There’s a volcano up there somewhere.

IMG_6644

The trail ends at this lava flow with a view of the lake.

IMG_6655

Driving back toward La Fortuna along the lake, Arenal is revealed.

IMG_6667

The view from Benedictus.

You might be wondering what the dogs were up to this whole time. It was mostly like this:

IMG_6625

Penny and Theda needed this vacation.

 

 

Feliz año nuevo!

Well, 2015, you are going to be a hard year to top.

We got married, traveled and played a bunch of music, became an auntie and uncle to the best niece ever (HI MARLOWE), started learning Spanish, and moved to Costa Rica. Oh, and I just got a new writing job. Basically, everything’s coming up Triplett Lentz.

PicMonkey Collage.jpgWe celebrated Christmas with my sister-from-another-mister Sarah and her husband Doyle, visiting from Alaska. After a few days hanging out at our place in Atenas, we spent several days in the beach town of Sámara, on the Nicoya Peninsula. Due to some neck pain from the most white-lady injury possible (I got a bad massage that pinched a nerve), I spent a too-significant percentage of time during their visit lying on my back high on muscle relaxers. But we still got in plenty of sun and fun, and it was fantastic to see them.

Google Chrome.png

Salud!

64EC378E-E66F-4B67-8B53-CF6D1A43303B

These handsome devils with their sangria.

The dogs were tick magnets out in that part of the jungle and both of them came down with tick fever — nothing antibiotics can’t fix, but boy is it nasty to pluck those parasitic little jerks out of your dogs’ ears every time they go outside.

1BA940E3-EA29-41A7-BC96-A6136C487C32

Beach dogs

Shortly after Sarah and Doyle departed, we were joined in Sámara by Andy’s brother-from-another-mother Danny and his wife Courtney. We spent New Year’s Eve on the playa, where we sat closer to the fireworks launch site than any of us have ever been. The beach was full of celebrants building bonfires and releasing paper lanterns into the air, and the fireworks were incredible. Not at all a bad way to welcome a new year.

6D923B2A-7175-4116-93EF-7B073D41BECC

Danny, clearly having an awful day.

CD4FDD74-DF2D-49DB-ADDC-CE329D5596E4

Love these two.

Currently we’re relaxing up in the cool north, amid the hot springs surrounding Volcán Arenal, for a few days before I fly to Boston to officially start my new job at Help Scout. So far, 2016 is off to a promising start.