Primeval Paradise (Drive day 101 minus 14 years)
There are places so beautiful you are punished for intruding. The Costa Rican state park of Marino Bellena, named after the humpback whales that pass by every year in migration, looks unoccupied. I wouldn’t be surprised to see dinosaurs amble out of its wooded shoreline. But instead we are attacked by swarms, hordes, battalions of mosquitoes. And a heat so wet and blanketing that your lungs feel unequal to the task of breathing it all in. All of which is the way it should be. Or developers would surely decimate this slice of coastal wilderness as they have in Costa Rica’s north. I’m willing to lose one night’s sleep to bear witness to Marino Bellena’s grandeur but we will peel out of here at first light tomorrow. Before the circling vultures overhead drop down to devour whatever vestiges of us the mosquitoes don’t eat first.
Follow this bonus-material blog and ride along on a one-year road trip that inspired the memoir The Drive: Searching for Lost Memories on the Pan American Highway. On sale now. Get yours through the buy-the-book links at the bottom of the landing page on my teresabrucebooks.com website or here or here. Planning a road trip? Buy the audiobook here. Like The Drive’s Facebook page and tweet back at me @writerteresa.