Very distracting…that’s what.
When you’re on a horse down on the beach, jungle on one side, and the sea on the other, you expect to hear lots of nature. What you don’t expect to hear is the (disconcerting) sound of one boob clapping as you trot / canter back on the last ride of your trip. Honestly, things that go through your head – ‘Why is it just the one?’, ‘How come it’s just the one?’, ‘If this keeps on it’ll have stretched and be down by my ankles’, ‘Can anyone else hear that?’, ‘Thank god, it’s just me, Shawna and two horses, so no-one else can get scared away’, ‘Please make it stop’, ‘Next time I’m wearing a better bikini top…actually, no, I’ll wear a sports bra and swim in that, no, I’ll just duct tape everything down’….
Still, it had been worth it, and took my mind off my ankle being rubbed raw by the stirrup – my own fault for being in cropped jeans. We had headed over to Esterillos Oeste, further south down the coast, for lunch and then the final ride of the trip. Esterillos Oeste is home to a lot of ex-pats with a love of the golf cart, in order to get around. Costa Rica does attract a lot of the retirees from North America who aren’t always the steadiest on their lower limbs, either that, or they are attempting to recreate life on a golf course, without golf clubs, a green or holes.
The beach was pretty empty, being a week day, and the tide was heading out toward the random giant mermaid statue away from the shore. No-one seems to know when, how or why she’s there, and I seem to have forgotten what a camera is as I didn’t take any photos.
The horses turned up and today I was on the lovely Banjo. Lovely most of the time, till it came to trotting, at which point he was very intent on ensuring that Shawna’s horse, the beautiful boy ‘Saffy’ wasn’t getting ahead of himself and taking the lead, so he’d cut him up or try and steer him toward the sea. Banjo also seems to love seawater, particularly drinking it, and was all up for heading into the surf for a paddle and a slurp.
Whilst the horses waited to be saddled up they grazed on the spikiest tree I’ve ever seen. You could see where it had been nibbled at before. As long as there was an element of green attached to it, the horses would give it a fair old go.
Apart from a lady laid out under a tree having a rummage (in a plastic bag on her stomach), the beach was deserted. Or so we thought. Turns out all the hermit crabs were out for a get together. Watching them, they were all headed in the same direction for a crab pow-wow, who knows what was going down.
We drew up for a halt, in order to have a dip in the sea, my first one since the morning we had gone to Manuel Antonio with the Epic Self gang. It was beautifully calm and the sea was warm and still. Shawna and me just floated about, getting shrivelled, chit chatting, watching the horses eating palm leaves in the shade of the trees. What a way to end the week.
We’d spent a lot of time in the water, so had to hurry up to get back, so the horses could be loaded up and get back to the farm before dark, hence the speeding up and the resulting being let down by the swimwear. However we made it back in time and after a quick photo op to prove I had actually ridden an equine they were safely back in their transport and us humans headed out for a final dinner at Los Almendros in the village. Yummy food to top off a great day.
The whole week has been a real experience of spending time, not just with horses, but with two amazing big hearted people in Rod and Shawna. They had taken on the task of hanging out and entertaining a random. They have no idea who they’re going to get, and they couldn’t have been any more friendly and generous with their time, knowledge and friendliness. Horses are amizzin’ and ‘umans are fab!