Thursday, April 23, 2009. San Jose’ to Guacimo, Costa Rica. This is the view from the restaurant where we had breakfast—Bocadito del Cielo while we were on the road. The pictures do not do it justice.
After breakfast, we went to the Guayabo National Monument, an archeological site near Turrialba, a small town in the Central Valley. It Is believed that this site was occupied between 1000 BC and 1400 AD but then was mysteriously abandoned. Little is known about the people who lived in this pre-Columbian site—the only one of its kind in the country.
When we stepped off the bus to enter the site, the rain began to come down. While walking along the path, we encountered leaf-cutting ants. These blind ants emit an odor so that other ants can find the seeds which come from an orange flower.
Our guide told us two stories associated with this plant. One was a religious story—The yellow spots on the top of the leaves were the drops of sweat that Christ spilled when we was crucified. On the underside of the leaf the spots are red representing the change in the color of blood when it flows. The other story was a romance story—The insects are attracted to the red spots on the underside of the plant and lay their eggs there in a protected location. She also said that “This is a demonstration that God does not miss any details in His creation.”
Monolito del Jaguar y el Lagarto This is one of the archaeological finds. It is a monolith that has a carving of a jaguar on one side and an alligator on the other.
In this area the circular conical homes were built. The foundations remain but the homes are gone.
There was an There was an aqueduct as well as a stone road. The mystery, of course, is how they built these things without tools. The Costa Ricans believe the task was as complex as the Egyptian pyramids.