Catching Up: Orosi Valley

Recalling last (early) November;

I joined a number of friends en route to mi amigo Diego’s mountain house for the weekend, which proved to be a superbly fun holiday.  We made the trip up in a couple of very packed cars through some very brutal traffic, and arrived in the Orosi Valley in Northern-Central Costa Rica, the Cartago province.  Perhaps unfortunately, the memories are a bit substance-hazy, but I’ll do my best to recollect.

A drinking vacation, we spent the first day and night there merry-making.  Setting up the hookah we realized that I’d forgotten the tongs… so we made due with a pair of forks, used chop-sticks-esque.  It ended up being only sub-catastrophic.  The weekend’s anthem was “The Wine Song” by the Cat Empire.  Many bottles and glasses were smashed together in jubilation; amazingly, none broke.  Take a minute or two to listen, and get a sense of the atmosphere involved.

I’ll wait.

Throughout the night, my Korean friend Soontae would imbibe or otherwise intake too much of some substance or another, and temporarily retire to a random bed for twenty or thirty minutes.  Next to my bed I had a brilliant setup of advil, pepto bismol, a carton of carrot-orange juice and a couple of litres of water, so I made sure he knew his repose there would not be permanent!

At three o’ clock, he bolted out of the frilly-pink master bedroom as though possessed, and shrieking “WHO LIKES FRENCH TOAST” proceeded to absorb the entirety of the next morning’s breakfast into a maelstrom of eggy-starches, which we all devoured unquestioningly.  I had to acquisition a few of them right out of Diego’s snatching digits for the girls who were getting ready to crash.

Around five o’ clock, as I was fading into oblivion myself, Diego picks up some philosophical treaty on astro-physics and a centuries-old blunderbuss of some kind, and proceeds to march up and down the hall reciting the text for us at a generous volume, eventually ending up in Soontae’s room where he kept the poor little guy up for like half an hour.  Jesus fuck.

The next morning, unbelievably, we were all without hangovers.  I started off the day with a dip in the roaring river in front of the house.  The girls had essays to complete for Monday, but we men were free of such obligations, and so we undertook an ambitious mountain/river trek up a stream that apparently hadn’t been endeavoured in at least a decade, if not much longer.  Fifteen or twenty minutes into it, I was leading and clearing out a large spiderweb for Diego who is terrified of arachnids, and as I did so a massive and murderous swarm of stinging insects hammered into my face, attacking my lips, nose and eyes, trying to find entry through some orifice. I realized that we would be devoured by them, that we either had to boogie forward or hightail it back to the cabin, so I yelled “GO GO GO FUCK SHIT GO” and pressed on ahead; I learned soon after that the guys thought either a jaguar or a flash-flood was headed straight for us.  Good times.

Shortly after that we decided to leave a few non-essentials behind to be picked up on the way back, including a couple of cumbersome hats, and rubber boots for those who brought them and realized they would have an easier time barefoot or sockfoot.  We weren’t twenty feet ahead when Diego looked back and saw Soontae trying to carry it all, boots in his arms, hats stacked on hats upon his head, apparently under the impression that we meant for him to do so.  “You’re so fucking ASIAN“, Diego cried.

Now shortly after that, we came to some rocks that required a lot of reaching and stretching to summit, and in the process of doing so my $5 swimtrunks ripped.  Over the next half-hour, the rip spread and I had to tie parts of it together with vine and twist it around very uncomfortably, and very, very embarassingly.  I just thought I would share that with you, for a goodish chuckle at my expense.

Finally, after fifty or sixty minutes we arrived at a tall impasse that we could have climbed over, but we saw that the going got much harder and we didn’t want to get caught in the dark.  So we took a smoke break, gloried in our small victories over nature, and turned back.  (This is where the picture of me as “the bobcat in the woods” was taken).  A number of pictures from the journey are floating around somewhere on the facebook.

Apart from these adventures it was a low-key day of cleaning up, drinking more, and eventually heading home.  And that about does it.

Love in Bobcats.  Pura vida.

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Published in: on 17 February 2010 at 11:21 pm  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Amazing! Pure genius Mr. Knoll! Love the ” YOUR SO FUCKING ASIAN” part, had me cracking up on my chair for a good while! It was good fun to re live our adventure there!

    – Diego


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