Sunday, October 21, 2012

Day 113 - Costa Rican Pumkins

Date: 10/21/12
Location: Costa de Oro, Costa Rica

Word of the day: roto - broken
Turtle Fact: The largest sea turtle every found was close to 1,500 pounds and 28 inches long.

Wake up 3:45am in the hammock, slightly saturated with moisture from the night rain. I head into the house and prepare for patrol. I ride the bike (solo) heading north on the beach. I get about halfway down (sector 11 or about 1k from the house) and I come to a complete halt. Thinking chain popped off the bike (as happened with the old bike - good riddens to bad rubbish) I unmount the bike and discover that the back wheel bolt came unloosed. Unfortunately I did not have any tools on me and had to walk the bike with me the rest of way. What a pain that was. Luckily I fashioned the bike seat to the strap of the turtle patrol backpack so that most the weight of the bike was being supported by the straps on my shoulders - smooth move. I walk the rest of the patrol only to find 2 poached nests, which I am pretty sure was the doing of a motorcycler on the beach this morning that had passed my twice (there and back). FML.

Back at the house I prepare some "normal" pancake batter. Breakfast. HT.com updates. Rake beach. Paint Costa De Oro Sign. Lunch. Siesta.

In the spirit of Halloween (after seeing everyones FB posting about how they are going to the apple orchird, or baking pies, etc) I decide to make some all-natural decor for our home. Knowing that we do not have pumpkins as a fertile crop nearby, I use the next best thing - COCONUTS. As I walk amongst to coconut trees in the backyard, Steven (my little, local tico friend) joins me. We sit along side each other and I show him wait I am doing. I get an extra knife and we carve away. Don't judge me for giving a 7 year old a sharp knife. I have seen him wield a machete better than me some days. Plus, I feel that in 3rd world countries you learn early on the consequences for potentially dangerous items you use every days - Darwinism.  We spend the next hour or so putting faces into the sides of all kinds of coconuts. For me, I was trying to see what the best combination of coconut to sculpting technique would work best. I find that scoring the older the coconuts works best for details. Cutting out shapes in younger coconut works best for generic faces (as the coconut shell is soft and undeveloped). Ahhh the scientific method.

Run. Update/Fix hammock. Remove raked piles.

Make Mofungo for dinner. Fix bike (easily done).

8pm I head to the hatchery for hammock patrol (guarding the hatchery from stray, turtle blood quenching dogs). 11:30pm I hear a noise outside the hatchery. By the time I release myself from the cocoon of hammock material, the noise maker was not longer present. 12:30am sleep.

Lesson: One screw/bolt can make all the difference

Food: Chicken Mofungo. Made with a mixture of green plantains and small green bananas, fried and then mushed with some sauteed garlic. Topped off with some shredded chicken and salty chicken rue ... my mouth is water typing this...

Animals: Crabs, Dogs, Birds, Mosquitoes

Something I am thankful for: Noise - things that make noise and being able to hear
Something I don't want to admit: I peed on the hatchery... well not necessarily on the hatchery but around the perimeter. In efforts to show male dominance and territory over the stray dogs in the neighbor hood we have been informed by some knowledgeable and reputable sources that males urinating in certain areas deters animals. This is due to the testosterone.

Total Nest I have saved:  41
Total Nests Poached on my Patrol: 44
Total Turtle Eggs I saved: 4732
Total Baby Turtles I Released: 955
Days of Rain: 72/109

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