DECEMBER 8, 2008
I was lying here trying to get some rest before my first patrol in two hours. I realized I have doubles tonight after I decided to trek 24k to and back from some random town in the scorching heat. Now I have a headache. My first here, so far.
"I need a phone call. I need a place ride. I need a rain coat."
I haven't been able to put my finger on exactly how I feel being here. I miss everyone more, of course, but I know that I have these responsibilities that I believe in. It is a lot of work, and I know that I would love it more if the people here enjoyed this time we have together. It's confusing to be around people that can't make a connection with each other. It makes it feel like work, even though I love laborious tasks. I love getting dirty. I love the sand and the sweat, but it's become mechanical and my only joys are the turtles, collecting shells, being outside. It's lots of time to myself that I feel I've had way too much of for the past three years as is. Maybe it'll get my head straight. I need to be enlightened. Maybe the true appreciation comes later.
I do feel extremely lucky, though. Some of the other camps in Costa Rica have dorms, hired chefs that make each meal for the team, running water, and electricity that runs no matter the cloud cover. I feel very fortunate because we were chosen to be at the most important and bear-bones turtle nesting site in all of Costa Rica, and the second most important nesting site for leatherback turtles. We may be in the middle of no where and not have much, but a simple life is wisdom. I feel protective and attached to this place. This is our beach. These are our turtles. This is our camp, and our backyard; our nightly sunset and daily sunrise. You know, I am tired each day. This is a fact. But I am proud. I've found my niche; my routine each day. My spot on our handcrafted, driftwood benches overlooking the surf (everything here, I mean everything is hand made--the shelves, table, benches, bed frames, tents, hatchery, counters, storage sheds, where we shower, where we use the restroom). There is my favorite hammock, my time to bathe in the morning, my satisfying "first breakfast" after second patrol, or in the random and early times that I wake up between 3-6am to check the hatchery. There are my favorite places on the beach for shell hunting, my favorite way to make oatmeal, the right way to tuck my mosquito net before I sleep at night, my favorite towel I use as a blanket, and the perfect time of the evening to change into patrol clothes right at dusk. I mean, without going on, we've made things our way; made them ours and grown attached to and maybe even fallen in love. Yeah. Today I think I love this place. Yeah, yeah, yeah... I'm in love.
In reading the quote on the previous page ("May you live every day of your life."--JONATHAN SWIFT), I truly do hope to live each day as now and not in anticipation of tomorrow. Maybe I accept all of the simpleness here and the time, knowing that this is all I have. Enjoy it while it lasts. I really am in no hurry for tomorrow. No particular hurry for the stressful travels home. Like I said, this is my life right now and to live in anticipation of the next day--the future--only leaves you unsatisfied. You miss out on so much in this way; forget how to see things for what they are, only for what you perceive them of becoming. Dictation and control. A lack of carefree. I won't have it, for this is today and it is something that we should honor. Find the good, the lessons and its wisdom. And I promise to try and keep this.
"Long December and I'm thankful to be here."