132. Helping Out & Turtle Spotting 🐢

Friday 9/1- Since the last time Ray, his son Josh and his girlfriend Christina went on a turtle walk they didn’t find anything, Ramie offered them to go on another walk with his team if they were up for it. The problem they ran into last time was that the full moon was just recently, and Ramie has been told that this actually affects turtles nesting because it's too bright on the beach so they don't feel safe going ashore. The other reason may have been because the tide had been extremely high, so if any turtle did lay her eggs, all of the signs of nesting (the tracks, body pit, and area that you could see the disturbed sand) would have been erased by the waves. Regardless of the conditions, the team still walks and tries to see if they can locate anything. Unfortunately, it turned out to be another day that they didn't find a nest. 

When Ramie got up, Skye also decided that it was time for her to be awake.  I wasn't quite ready for that yet, so I curled up on the couch to continue "resting" since sleep would be impossible. 

I'm glad one of us was able to fall back asleep...
Ramie got home just before 7am but he only had time to drink one cup of coffee before he had to go help Randall at the shipping company. They had a lot going on this week and they called Ramie in to help organize, inventory, and repack a shipping container for a customer that moved back to the US and hired the company to take care of it all. Ramie was scheduled to be there at 8, but it would be a short workday for him because I had a doctor's appointment in Quepos. This doctor’s appointment was the work of the VA again, and I have absolutely no say what location, day, or time they make these appointments for me, and I usually only get about a 2 week notice of the appointment. Last August they made me go all the way up to San Jose, about a 4 hour drive each way for us. I was glad that this time they made it in Quepos which is only one hour away.

We thought about bringing Skye back to Ray and Wesley’s for another play date with Izzy, but that would have been a lot of back and forth for Ramie since they live very near to where he was working this morning, (and the opposite direction of where we're going) so we decided to leave her home alone. Since we didn’t know how long this was going to take us today, we thought it would be best to put her in her kennel, even though she still doesn’t do great in there when we leave her home alone.

Ramie got home, took a quick shower, and then we got on the road.

With an hour drive in front of us, he got to tell me all about what he was recruited to do for Randall and Lowell at the shipping company this morning. He began his story with something like “I don't understand why some people decide to ship some of the things I had to deal with today.”

Well, I guess when this person moved from the US to Costa Rica, he more or less shipped everything that was in their house. What it looked like was they had someone go into the house and put every single item into a box, bin, or suitcase. By everything, I literally mean everything right down to the package of tic-tacs that may have been in the junk drawer. This stuff was shipped to Costa Rica, has sat unopened in a shipping container for who knows how long now, and apparently Costa Rica didn’t work out for this guy, because he is now moving back to the US and wants everything shipped back there. You can only imagine what the heat and humidity will do to a container full of things so carelessly packed, and now that package of tic-tacs was literally a container of goo and mold. There were also bins of pillows that, according to Ramie, likely could have crawled away on their own due to all the mold and nastiness growing on them, and a suitcase that had bags of pasta in it that were literally crawling with bugs. There was so much that was just senseless, but by the sounds of it, this person wanted all their stuff back no matter the condition. The opinion of the company is that as long as the owner pays for it, they can have it back! It didn't sound like a fun project, but Ramie said it was actually kind of interesting to see what other people (especially the ones with more money than sense) decide to ship.

It only took us about 45 minutes to get to where we needed to be, we had plenty of time to spare, which was good because we didn’t know exactly where we were going. Between the instructions/map that the VA provided to me and what Google maps actually told us, there was a little bit of confusion, but fortunately we had plenty of time to find a parking spot and walk around the block to find the doctor’s office. When we figured out exactly where I had to go, we had about a half hour to waste. We knew of (and have been to once before) an interesting store that was fairly nearby. It’s a grocery store on the first level and they sell a lot of American brands that can be difficult to find down here (of course, for some of it you will pay quite dearly, so make wise decisions), and upstairs they sell furniture and household stuff, the prices on this stuff was actually pretty reasonable. We have been looking for an outdoor patio set and haven’t really loved anything that we’ve found so far, so we thought that this would be another good place to check.

We did find a set that would fit our space and the price was reasonable but we it wasn’t really what we had in mind and we didn’t completely love it. We wanted to think it over while I was in my appointment and we’d make a decision before we headed back home. My appointment lasted about an hour and a half, which was way longer than either of us were expecting, but between all of the hoops the doctor has to jump through for the VA rules and the extra time it took because of slight language barriers (the doctor spoke good English overall, but medical speak is kind of a specialty and he had some trouble translating to English and I didn’t know what he was saying in Spanish, so there was a bit of struggle). After thinking about it for that hour and a half, Ramie had made the decision that we would pass on this patio set and we would keep looking.

Also, while I was in my appointment Ramie was in contact with Randall to check on the status of the weather in Uvita. If it was raining he would not be going back to work this afternoon; in order to organize the stuff in the containers they have to take everything out, inventory it, and put it all back. If it was raining, it would get all wet, and that just wouldn’t be good. It turns out it was raining and Randall was done working for the day, so Ramie got the rest of the afternoon off. Ramie also got a text message from the turtle sanctuary that, strangely enough, a turtle was spotted by some lifeguards laying her eggs on the beach during the daylight today. I guess she just couldn't hold them anymore! Many of the lifeguards at the beaches that the sanctuary covers have been trained how to collect the turtle nests, so that part had already been done, and the eggs just needed a ride to the reserve. None of the volunteers live in that area, but since we would be passing right past this beach on the way home, Ramie offered to pick them up, and deliver them. Yes, the reserve is another half hour farther past our house, but what else was Ramie going to do in the rain this afternoon since he didn’t have to go back to work.

We stopped at the beach, grabbed the eggs and continued on our way home. Ramie didn’t need me to come down to the reserve with him and I know how anxious Skye gets in her kennel, so I had him drop me off on the highway at the end of our road and I walked home. I didn’t hear her barking and crying as I walked toward the house, but as soon as I opened the door she got super excited and started barking. Apparently, Skye was pretty anxious for a while after we left because I noticed that she ended up chewing through her little wooden dog house that Ramie built for her. At least she didn’t have any accidents, though! Needless to say, she was super excited to see me and to get out of her kennel, she certainly does not like being in there while we are gone. What are we going to do with this girl?

As always, super cuddly with her people, and likes to watch TV with us
Saturday 9/2- Today Ramie had to go to work to help Randall again. It's a bummer that it happened to be my day off, but 2 shipping containers were being delivered today and they had to be offloaded immediately while the driver waited… there was no delaying this working day! (Randall and Lowell don’t usually work on Saturdays either, Ramie was assured, and this will not be a “regular” occurrence). He had to be there at 8am and would probably be there most of the day, but it is what it is. Fortunately, with the upcoming Labor Day holiday, between my regular days off, some vacation time, and the holiday, I had a few days off from the “main job”. I did end up working a little bit in the morning and when I was done with what I had to do there, I got to work on some craft projects that I’ve been wanting to do, and, of course, work on the blog... I always have to mention that. 😉 

This guy was trapped in our house and I wasn't sure was going to make it, I rescued him and released him on one of our patio plants, later when I came back to check, it had flown away :)

Ramie didn't get home until around 3:30, which was surprising to me because it had started to rain about an hour or so earlier and the rain was pretty intense. He explained that today’s work was much different than yesterday’s and that almost everything they were offloading was stone so it could get wet. Ramie really seemed to enjoy these last few days of helping Randall and Lowell at the shipping company and offered to help them out more often in the future if they need it. I think those guys really appreciated that Ramie could help out too, because after hearing Ramie’s stories, I’m not quite sure how the two of those guys would have been able to do all of this on their own without Ramie’s help.

Sunday 9/3 and Monday 9/4- Labor Day Weekend- I have more vacation time at work than I’ll probably ever be able to use, so I decided to take Sunday off work from the “main job” and with the Monday holiday, I was actually going to get to enjoy a nice long weekend! On Sunday while we were just hanging out and relaxing in the pool, out of the blue Ramie mentioned he was craving some Jolly Roger fries. It didn’t take any convincing and I was in! We know that Tracy likes Jolly Roger fries too, and since Geoff is currently back in Canada, we thought Tracy would like some company, so we invited her to come along with us too. We ate our fries, had a drink, and decided that since we were here we might as well order some wings too and just made a dinner of it. Yep, that worked out great! Yum!

Monday, if you can believe it, was even more chill than Sunday was. We trimmed Skye’s nails, had pool time, and just enjoyed our day doing mostly nothing.

Surprisingly, Skye doesn't mind having her nails trimmed.

Such an exhausting day!

Wednesday 9/6- On their turtle walk this morning, Ramie’s team spotted their first turtle in the process of laying her eggs this season. Unfortunately, the location that she chose to lay was not ideal, she was in the trees with a lot of roots in the way so it made digging very difficult. After realizing her mistake, she gave up and made her way back toward the beach. Once she had cleared the tree line and the team could tell for sure that she was not going to try to dig another nest, she started to head back to the ocean. This is the point where the volunteers can interact with her. When they find a turtle on the beach, they have to check if it has been previously tagged and record the tag number. If it has not been previously tagged, then they have to tag her. This one had not been tagged, so they got to do that this morning. Ramie had the job of holding the turtle while David got the tagging kit ready. It was clear that the turtle wanted nothing more than to just get back into the ocean. Ramie told me that the turtle was surprisingly strong and it took quite a lot of work to hold her. Once David was ready to tag her, Ramie also had to hold out her front fin so they could place the tag. After that was done, the turtle made a run for it, but in all of the excitement, Ramie realized that he still had to measure her. So now, with the turtle on the move and in the dark with nothing but a red light on, he had to try to take measurements. He somehow managed to get the information that he needed, and Val snapped this awesome picture (below) of him in the process.

Here she is in the trees and tall grass
Waiting for her to try to dig a nest
Such a great experience!

Pura Vida!