Words: Sophie Abdy
As Alpha 3 near the end of phase 1 in Cabo Blanco, our hard work is finally starting to show. All shoreside rocks have been cleared and further out to sea the very tough bedrock is beginning to give way.
Morale has further been improved by the arrival of Don Felipe (head ranger of Cabo Blanco) who has kept us very busy completely rebuilding bridges, digging a cesspit (!), and clearing two new paths.
Evening entertainment has been particularly enjoyable. Especially since we have been using the Raleigh Book of Spells for game recommendations including 'Darling I love You' which was hotly contested (and eventually won) by Harm, with Daniel coming in a determined second.
Other games include 'Clay Sculpture Model' (but renamed something unpublishable!) and the 'Cereal Box game' where a number of the group astounded us with their extreme flexibility.
Some of us have also formed an elite 'A3 jungle division' (Alex, Angie, Yuri, Sophie, Anne and Christine) after enduring a demanding walk down a very steep river bed.
And we celebrated Jakhya's 23rd birthday celebrations with a truly delicious hand-made chocolate gateau!
We've also been privileged to have resident biologist Sheldon working alongside us, both on water and land. Her wealth of knowledge about the reserve and all its different species has really enhanced our experience. It's made us truly appreciate the ecosystem that we're helping to protect.
Yesterday we were taken snorkelling in the beautiful lagoon just in front of our house. There were hundreds of fish including parrot and puffer fish. But most exciting of all, Yuri and Anne were lucky enough to spot a turtle!
Before our departure from Cabo Blanco we're going to a waterfall near Montezuma and stopping at Cabaño on the way for a festival and bull parade.
In addition, Don Felipe is preparing us a Costa Rican dinner to thank us for all our hard work.
I think we all agree this has been a once in a lifetime experience made particularly special by the rangers who are so committed to the reserve.
At least one tear will be shed when we say goodbye to Cabo Blanco and the mighty Alpha 3!