by Marlene Koch
This is part of one of my blog posts from “La Pura Vida” during my time abroad at the University of Costa Rica in San José from February-July 2013!
Have you ever been dumped out of your raft and floated down a river in a Costa Rican canyon? Watched an ocean-sunset 3,000 miles away from anyone you know and love in the company of strangers (and lizards/monkeys)? Swam in a waterfall with a volcano-view? Canoed through a crocodile-infested national park? Zip-lined Superman style over the rainforest? Sat on a virgin beach with not a single soul in sight?
I have. And I soaked up every single crazy, unbelievable, peaceful, awe-inspiring minute, but not a single one went by without a prayer for the people I love back home. I couldn’t believe how much I missed them, how much I love them, and how much I wanted them next to me.
However, missing those I love made those moments all the more precious and personal. I see now how beautiful it was to experience them by myself, to feel sort of alone in a great big world, that feeling of wonderment when you stand (or soar or float) feeling like you were dropped into a giant painting or onto another planet. You recognize nothing in the beginning, but you grow to belong to the place, and the place to you, in a way you just can’t inside the comfort zone of the presence of your friends and family.