Dominical, Costa Rica. Where the only cold water found is spouting from a showerhead.
Well, that’s not entirely true. The ocean and the pools all feel a bit tepid – as if they should contain the tail end of a bath instead of the chilly rush that most people have become accustomed to. Although they feel wonderful, the idea of diving in to actually cool down from the beating sun does not exist in such bodies of water. But – traipsing through the jungles that lie just beyond the beaches, a waterfall is bound to pop up and the fresh springs underneath are always a welcome cooling source.
Just the other day I took my brother’s advice and sauntered across a bridge behind our lodging. I followed a short trail and discovered in front of me a beautiful waterfall, complete with rocks to clamber over and small pools to soak in. It was not a huge waterfall like Nauyaca or even like Pozo Azul in Dominicalito. It did not have heavy currents of water impatiently rushing down its face. But it did have multiple chunks of falling streams, all of them large enough for me to sit under and relish in a deeply chilly shower. With the heat of Dominical, a shower chill enough to touch the bones is a rare and welcome occurrence. And of course, the enjoyment of jumping and splashing around in the small, refreshing pools refuses to disappoint the old or the young. Plopping down on a nearby rock after my initial shower of excitement, I began reading my book and listening to the noises around me.
The rush of the water gently caressing the face of the rocks and forcefully hitting the pools below. The sound of the moving river behind me and the occasional jump and tuck of small animals in and out of the water. The everywhere cicadas. The click-click of the geckos and the whooshing of birds’ wings from within the oh-so vibrant green trees. All of this (so peaceful and yet hypnotically loud) mixed with the words of Dai Sijie telling the tale of two young reactionary boys in Communist China allowed me to escape into a world in which I almost did not exist.
After some time I looked up. I did not know how much time had passed. I did not really care.
I thought about how perfect the waterfall would be for doing my laundry, and with that thought I returned to civilization, family, and showerheads.