Costa Rica today, and I'm up in time to watch us berth at a dock only a few metres longer than the ship. It's a commercial port with containers and cranes but lush green countryside beyond. This morning's excursion is the sloth sanctuary and rain forest and we meet in the theatre to be assigned numbered stickers before being led out to our coach. Our guide is Kitty and she introduces us to the culture and history of Costa Rica as we drive. We pull over briefly to buy a bunch of bananas that are passed around for us to sample. and again to see a troop of Monkeys beside the road.
Arriving at the Sloth Sanctuary we first watch a video accompanied by a Flanders and Swann song I vaguely remember. Then the grandson of the founders introduces us to some of the rescued sloths, including one called Johnny Depp. They are incredibly endearing,with a rather vacant smile and gentle demeanour, mostly snuggling under blankies. Most sadly have injuries, some acquired crossing roads that have bisected their territory and others from climbing electricity pylons that they mistake for trees.
After the adults we are introduced to the babies, which are even cuter still if such a thing is possible. One is paraplegic and another was abandoned by his mother because he kept falling out of trees. Apparently he kept hanging on to his own limbs instead of branches! Next Kitty takes us for a nature walk and I'm astonished to see many land crabs. We also see a sloth, lizards and a massive spider.
We stroll around the town and Alex and I share a fresh coconut, drinking the water through a straw. Then it's back to the ship. We decide to have a quick swim folloed by a drink at the sunset bar but sadly it's too cloudy for a scenic sunset. Night falls quickly. Alex and I watch the show, an excellent Cirque du Soleil type affair with astonishingly supple acrobats. By the time it finishes Alex is almost asleep and we have dinner while he goes straight to bed.