Thursday, January 22, 2009
La Fortuna, Costa Rica II
Six years ago, when I first visited La Fortuna, it seemed a sleepy tourist town built at the base of a fictional volcano. People said there was a volcano. All the tourist brochures showed pictures of a volcano. But with the clouds hovering just above the treetops, I couldn’t ever really say with certainty that it wasn’t all just an elaborate hoax.
A number of things have changed in the ensuing years. They put in a Burger King and couple dozen more tourist hotels. But as far as the volcano thing goes, I remain unconvinced. I drove into town after dark, and it commenced raining not long thereafter. The clouds parted just enough this afternoon to allow a fleeting glimpse of something vaguely mountain-like, and I could make out some distant eruptive rumbling, but I remain unconvinced.
Still, I had a better day than the frogs. Using my abundance of non-eruption photographing time on my hands, I wandered as far as one of the dozen eco-center reserves fringing town. Most of it seems to be farmland that no one’s gotten around to deforesting yet. Put up a fence and charge seven bucks to get in. Good work if you can get it.
Unlike the real forest, the various forest frogs are easily found. And if they hop off in a panic, there’s usually someone to help you find the thing again. So it was that one tiny red and blue denizen of the rainforest came to spend his afternoon in blinding proximity to my macro lens and flash system.
Every few minutes when I thought he might burst into flames, I poured a thimble of water onto him and he seemed good as new. And people call me heartless.