The morning rains are over and the afternoon cloud cover hasn’t smothered us yet. “Let’s go to the river!” I suggest.
“Oh, yes!” Sebastian jumps for joy. He’s still young enough at “almost eight” to do that. We pack a bag, call the pups Koda and Cookie, and set off down the steep jungle trail to the Rio Morete at the bottom of the property. I love having this time one-on-one with my grandson free from outside influence. I can be a kid again with him – laughing, singing, acting silly.
The dogs splash first into the crystal pool, legs outstretched, ears a-flapping. Sebas dives in upstream and rides the chute to greet them. I balance on the edge of the a small waterfall downstream and dive into the pool below. “Oh Fufi, let’s run the rocks to the big waterfall at the grotto. I’ll bet we can still get underneath it.” The rainy season has just started so the water levels are still manageable and the current is not yet at the “swept away” level.
“Let’s go. I’ll race you.” Of course he always beats me. He moves like a monkey perfectly balanced a bit forward and light on his feet. He’s been doing this since two years old. We pass through the impenetrable looking sheet of waterfall and pretend we live in its cave, then break through and take another slide to the grotto. The whole area below the falls is circled by sky reaching smooth grey rock carved into small circular pools.
Sebas and I swim into one of them – like a miniature Jacuzzi. I see something undulating between us. “Oh, shit!” just comes out. In an adrenal rush, I grab Sebas and propel us out of there like bullets shot from a gun. “It’s a snake!”
He’s excited. The scientist in him gets the best of his fear. “I wanna see it.” From a safe distance we stand on rocks and there it is. Still there. It obviously feels at home. We remember the details for identification later – 4 ft. long, black, skinny, narrow head. Doesn’t look poisonous but I’m not taking chances. What a story we have to tell when we get home. Swimming with a snake. We’ll add this one to our life list of animals of Costa Rica.