So I had grand plans for my recent Costa Rica trip to finally be the “art of doing nothing vacation.” As in, I would physically travel somewhere to basically do nothing. But being me and not wanting to miss out on too much or in my case take cool photos, (since let’s face it, there’s only so many photos one can take on the grounds of a resort, even if it is one of the most spectacularly designed resorts you’ve ever stayed at), I did plan two off-site day trips.
In my carry-on luggage, I had downloaded two books onto my Nook…I brought a copy of my newest issue of Lonely Planet…I even brought the first 100 pages of my manuscript, planning to carefully read through it again as it had been a long time since I looked at those pages. Well, the best progress I made was finishing my first book ( Celeste Ng’s Little Fires Everywhere definitely deserves all the critical acclaim it’s received). But the magazine was never cracked and I never reread the words of my manuscript.
Of the five full days I had in Costa Rica (in addition, two were traveling days which I don’t count), three of them were totally spent at the resort, which was a first for me. Unlike in Hawaii where I’ve always rented a car, here I was sans wheels, marooned in rural Costa Rica, albeit in posh accommodations with breathtaking views. And even though my body clock was still waking me up at 6AM (my normal time on a work day), my days were still jam packed, unintentionally though.
I had booked a room rate which included buffet breakfast each morning, figuring then no lunch would be needed, and even though it was buffet, service wasn’t always prompt and efficient. But in all honesty, you didn’t mind the sitting around too much with views like this.
On the mornings we went to the pools, well, in my and D’s fair skinned cases, there’s the inevitable long period of time for sunblock application…and then when you’re in an infinity pool, well, you just want to look out all day onto the bay. Or marvel at the truly captivating antics of the howler monkeys who live on the grounds of the resort. From other travel bloggers in other parts of the world, I know that some monkeys can be a bit frightening, even chasing or jumping onto you. But here, while they did get relatively close, it’s only because the tree branches they were swinging on just happened to be near to where you were standing.
As beautiful as the pools were, it was the beach where I spent the most time. And maybe this is where I failed the most at the art of doing nothing vacation, by packing my Nook and manuscript into my beach bag. However, once I got there, when I wasn’t actually IN the water, all I wanted to do was sit and gaze out at the vast cerulean waters. Considering my views as I write this are of concrete and a rain strewn gray sky, well, you can understand why I did this.
I think the reason I failed at the whole “art of doing nothing vacation” is because I still went to a destination where I wanted to be relatively active, where I could gaze nonstop at the majestic scenery all around me, and where I relished in the fact that I was somewhere so much the opposite of my everyday surroundings. And let’s face it, Costa Rica is the exact opposite of Pittsburgh.
When you’re the type of traveler whose personality consists of wanting to see and do as much as possible, perhaps the “art of doing nothing vacation” isn’t entirely feasible. But you know what? That’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Pin me & save for later!