May 23:  La Fortuna/Arenal to Monteverde

Up 7:50am.  I had a good night's sleep but woke up hourly.

We got in a van at 8:30 for a half-hour ride, then at 9:15am took a boat across Lake Arenal for a half hour, then at 10am rode in a van for 1.5 hr to the Rustic Lodge in Monteverde (actually in the town of Santa Elena).  I got a huge room between Fabi and the Canadians, and I could hear everything.  EVERYTHING.

Again, I like being the only single guy on a tour.  If anything, I get some space.

Inside joke.  You know who you are.

We walked into town to another Desafio office and booked more activities.  I booked the ziplining and bridges for $50.

We ate lunch at a hole-in-the-wall, which was excellent.  I had a huge burrito (TWSS).  While we were eating, torrential rain started.  Sarah, Fabi and I took a taxi back to the hotel.  Everyone else walked and got drenched.

Aw.  At the hotel there was this doggie who was wet and shivering and scared of the thunder.  Fabi(?) dried him off and gave him a towel.  He didn't want to come into the lobby, and didn't want the rest of my burrito, and wasn't affectionate.  The woman next door hated him and he was probably abused.  Aw.

Marieke held him and warmed him up for a while.  After that, I held him.  Try to spot the dawg!  Someone took pics of me here, which I'd like to see.

We were supposed to ride horses as part of our transport to Monteverde, but Fabi informed us ahead of time that those horses weren't strong enough yet this year.  Then we were supposed to ride them at 1:30pm (non-transport, just for fun) but the rain literally put a damper on that.  So we were going to regroup at 3:30pm and see if the weather would permit.  I put on my jeans with the hole in the pocket, which I can't wear to work, but which I keep just for use in outdoor activities that require long pants.  I'd wanted to wear my assless chaps for the horseback ride, but I forgot to pack them.

Random note:  Our favorite songs on this tour are Baby Got Back (I don't know how that started, but there was an appropriateness that we missed with the gallo pinto we ate every day..."give me a sister I can't resist beans and rice didn't miss her"), The Roof Is On Fire, and Hot in Herre.  The Roof Is On Fire is directly related to Rian's obsession with burning things, like the neighbor who hates the shivering dog.  Rian also looks like a sloth, but there are no sloth-themed songs that we know of.  Our favorite sayings on the tour are TWSS and "step on it".

We (all except Fabi, who was working on her next tour, and Rain, who was likely peeing or burning something) left for horseback riding at 3:30pm and the rain had subsided.  We rode 4pm-6pm.  My horse was Parajito...he was lazy early on but got more energetic late in the ride.  I'd ridden before (notably the 1984 Wallenpaupack ride with Jill and Flicka) but this was my first time galloping, and I lost my foothold in the stirrups twice.  My balls kept getting squashed as I bounced on the horse.  I was preparing to get thrown, and land with my chin tucked, which is the most useful thing I've learned in 27 years of watching the WWF/WWE.  Kevin and Jordan were our guides (Monteverde was founded by Quakers so a lot of people have American names) and were rumored to be high.  At a rest stop they cut two pineapples for us and and then laughed as we unknowingly ate them while standing on anthills and got bit through our clothes by giant ants.  I had a bunch in my crotch that I was able to brush off before they did any damage, and had dozens all over my socks and pants.

We got back to the hotel at 6:30pm.  In my room, I found a squashed ant that was still moving.  I squashed it more with my shoe, and it was STILL moving.  These ants...they're not my kind of ants.

We had dinner at Don Juan, a restaurant above/next to an art gallery.  I ordered Thai shrimp in coconut curry, and they messed up my order and gave me the shrimp & mushroom appetizer, so I had to wait extra long.  Fun conversation...Fabi:  "What is 'rich'?"  Sandy identified the food they were talking about that was rich.  Fabi:  "No, what does 'rich' mean?"  Like the woman on the subway with Elaine.  Putro's Law.  Perfect.  Somehow we all got to talking about the N-word, and I cited Chris Rock's bit about the only time a white person can get away with saying it (the Christmas Eve thing).  And then I complimented myself on being the first person to actually say "nigger" instead of "the N-word" at the dinner table.  I'm a comedian, so I don't avoid words.

At dinner I told everyone about my Contiki Bombshelter makeout session in 2001.  Sarah:  "Do you not resist advances?"  I'm pretty sure I have, but I couldn't think of an example right then.  Also, I was rimming my beer glass with my finger (is that the right word?) and Sarah seemed taken aback because my hands were allegedly dirty.  To prove they weren't, I licked my fingers and my palm.  Fabi said my hand was salty.  I pointed out that I'd licked my left hand, not my right one.  She spun around in her chair.

After dinner, Fabi, the Dutch girls, the Canadians and I went to Chacho's, which is called Spiral Bar in Let's Go.  Everyone but me and Fabi left at 10pm.  We stayed there till 3am, chatting and hanging out with some other G.A.P people.

The aforementioned Robert in the middle, dancing all sweatily.  He noticed when I took this pic and then took one of me and Fabi (I want to see it!).  Later he was dancing shirtless, which I didn't take a pic of, because that would be way too gay.  Katie (from karaoke) is on the right in this pic.  She says people who claim to be complicated really aren't.  And there was something else we disagreed on that Fabi thought would progress into a heated argument, but it didn't and I forget what it was.  Katie is from Ontario but her accent isn't.  She actually seemed pretty cool, despite what anyone may have said.  I would have.

There was a school group in the bar, and one fattie tried to talking to me.  Sure enough, she was from LA (Azusa Pacific).  Sorry, I like the young girls...don't get me wrong...and I'd love to bang a chick half my age, because I'm in showbiz and theoretically should be doing it regularly...but not like that.

The bar ran out of Pilsen (which I'd switched to from Imperial, because it's 5.1% for the same price) and they gave me a Rock Ice.  What the hell is Rock Ice?  Erik (Fabi's friend, another G.A.P leader) felt so sorry for me that he gave me a Heineken.

I went to bed at 3:30am and was preparing to get up at 7am.  A productive night.