Today began with a shot in the arm of enthusiasm and inspiration when after breakfast we were introduced to Jennifer, president of Kids Saving the Rainforest, who told us the story of how she encouraged her 9 year old (now 23) to start a non-profit to plant trees, which has now grown into a full operation of a wildlife sanctuary and monkey conservation efforts. We left for a full day in Manuel Antonio looking forward to our service work with and her long-term volunteers tomorrow. Our challenge will be entertaining the monkeys!
We met our naturalist, Freddie, at the gate of Manuel Antonio National Park. Together, we marveled at the spiders, lizards, rainbow crickets, two-toed and three-toed sloths, and white-faced monkeys. No wonder they want to save the rainforest! The only rival to Freddie at spotting the wildlife was eagle-eye Noa Meiri.
Our nature hike ended at the beach where we set up to eat our bag lunch just in time for a cool shower. That didn’t last long enough to interfere with our afternoon activities: parasailing, horseback-riding, duck diving the waves, ocean kayaking, and shopping. Sandy and tired, we watched the sun sink into the ocean, as we sang “Eli Eli- we pray that these things never end: the sand and the sea, the rush of the water, the crash of the heavens the prayer of the heart.”
Today’s blog was written by guest blogger and retreat co-leader, Rabbi Batsheva Meiri, from Congregation Beth HaTephila of Asheville, NC.