From Sally's trip log:
17 Dec 08 Today the ship went through an area of Costa Rica called Golfo Dulce. They wanted to show us a bay surrounded by the rain forest. We had been able to see so much more on our pontoon ride, but it was a beautiful area. We learned that Costa Rica has set aside 27% of its country in some sort of preserve. The size of the entire country is about the same size as West Virginia. They have no army, so the majority of the taxes go to education and health care. We went to hear the history guy in the afternoon as he gave us some of the history of the Panama Canal. In the evening, we went to the live show, David Deeble, a comedian. He was funny.
We have been cruising for 10 days now with 7 days to go. We are getting to know our way around the ship and some of the nautical terms. The weather has been in the 80's just about every day at every stop. Completely wonderful weather like you would imagine this far south in winter. Today the Captain said that the air temperature is 82 degrees and the water temperature is 83 degrees.
We had 5 stops in Mexico. Almost every stop we took some sort of tour to get to know the place. The local guides were always so friendly, educated and knowledgeable. Our stop yesterday was in Costa Rica. Our tour there was on a pontoon boat going down a river. Do you remember the Jungle Cruise at Disneyland? It was just like that, only 2 hours long (and no hippos or elephants). We did see lots of crocodiles, only 1 monkey, and lots of pretty birds.
We will arrive at the Panama Canal tomorrow morning. I understand that it takes the whole day to get through the locks. Mark is really excited about watching all of that.
One can have fun with the activities on board or with eating, or can be mesmerized looking out over the ocean into a state of complete peace. (I have been taking advantage of both.)
Sal & Mark
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