It was a period in my life filled with great promise and incredible insight. Rob, Caroline and I were building an eco-retreat in Bajos del Toro, Costa Rica. It was a recipe for something good – something fresh, but it was also a recipe for a break in the partnership due to conflicting schedules, ideas, language barriers and geographic complications. But sometimes, that’s life. Things happen for a reason. This happened for a reason. But our friendships remain and Costa Rica… well Costa Rica is one of those places that never leaves your soul.
While I was there, I saw what it was that Caroline loved so much about this place. She welcomed us into her home as if we were her own children and shared her vision with us. Every morning in Escazu, the dogs would compete with the parrots for decibel rights while the white-faced monkeys eluded our sight as they swung from tree to tree around the finca plantations. The scenic, dirt roads, the dense canopy, even the humid discomfort of the Osa Peninsula and all its mosquito glory, ignited the possibilities within.
Caroline introduced Rob and I to Alvaro Ugalde, the man widely considered the father of Costa Rica’s National Park System. Guided by his soft and thoughtful conversation, we walked with him through a lush preserve and returned to his lab where we saw samples of new flora species otherwise undiscovered to the outside world. I met an inventive genius expat named Michael, whose rail bike idea for an abandoned rail system borders on American ingenuity and the environmentally savvy thinking common to Costa Rica. We drove through the switchbacks of the highlands, briefed Chirripo National Park, stayed in the cloud forest near Arenal, ate at the sodas of San Jose and eventually landed in Bajos del Toro where we trekked our 25 acre plot beautifully sprawled along a natural spring untouched by the oncoming wave of Western development.
I have many memories of this incredible place and I will be back. In the meantime though, I have the images to remind me of my experiences and that will have to suffice. Here are a few of those images from the property in Bajos del Toro and the country that we explored. Enjoy.