Monday, March 22, 2010

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Paul Smith

Visitors often peek into my "Get-away" house on their way to see the manioc mill. Some are surprised to discover some oil paintings on the wall, like the one seen in the attached image. It's a self portrait of the painter, Paul Smith. Paul, originally from Canada, has lived in Monte Verde, Costa Rica more than 40 years. He's not only a painter, but also a violinist and a violin maker. His sons own and operate the Fondavela Hotel, located on what used to be the family's dairy farm. Paul and I became friends when we attended Berea College in Berea, Kentucky back in the Middle Ages.

Muddy road

Last Wednesday we were scheduled to receive three busloads of passengers from the cruise ship, Royal Princess. Unfortunately, it rained the night before leaving a layer of mud that was impossible to pass over. Normally this wouldn't have happened, but some politician decided to help us out by running a patrol over the road. The loose dirt hadn't been compacted by traffic, thus the mud following the rain. I got stuck in my car. Actually, I didn't get stuck. The rear wheels locked up because of the accumulated mud in the area around the tires. My Fiat wheels up front were turning, but the rear wheels were simply dragging. About an hour later two of the tour buses entered the dirt road, only to get stuck about half way to the Bosque. An emergency bus was sent in. It got stuck too. Finally, the tour was canceled and the passengers walked back to the highway, in the mud. Every vehicle entering the road got stuck. The road was open the next day because the sun had dried up the mud and some traffic had compacted it down. Image, a truck being towed into a wide spot in the road.

Plumeria pudica

Alamanda flower

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Bosque Reception Center

Only a stone's throw from my "get-away house" is the reception center for Bosque Santa Lucia. No big deal, it houses two bathrooms and a collection of wooding representing the Amazonian forest. The bathrooms are the favorites!

Get-away house

Some ship passengers visit my casa de caboclo (Hillbilly House) on their way to the manioc mill.

Thursday, March 04, 2010


Paulinho (Little Paulo), one of our favorite guides in the Amazon. On this day he was with a group of passengers from a cruise ship.

Brazil nut bloom

The fallen bloom of the Brazil nut tree (Bertholetia excelsa).