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Old 08-21-2013, 06:54 AM   #166
familygoboston
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Any recommendations for clothing brands and stores? I saw some things I liked at Dick's Sporting Goods, but they were fairly expensive. Is there ever time to wash clothes (even if by hand)? Would they have time to dry if we washed them in the sink? It seems like we will be packing and moving frequently.
Also LLBean, but you may find them as expensive as REI and the other upscale retailers. We did find some cheaper stuff at Bass pro shops. One thing we did to keep costs down, was only bought 3-4 prs of pants and shirts and re wore them 2 days. The tees can be any poly blend which will dry quick and it's easier to find those cheaply. The idea is to buy non cotton- not all of it has to be pricey- but just that it will dry fast. You will get wet, and cottons just don't dry out. The qd stuff does so you don't mind putting it on another day as much!

We did do laundry at the hotel in MA, which is not on the itinerary,but you can Check the itinerary hotels for guest laundry, or laundry service. We do laundry on most trips...it's so much easier than carrying around tons of luggage!
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Old 08-22-2013, 04:47 PM   #167
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Addendum

So, we got our photos online today (yey!!) and the guides took some awesome shots! Anyway, I just want to show a few add-ons to the initial report I wrote.

Just want to show how much rain we had while doing the nature watch in Tortuguero. It poured for over an hour and I was just glad it actually stopped. This photo showed how rainy it was.



This is the sunset in Tortuguero. Lucy took this photo with a point and shoot and just hitting myself for not having the opportunity to take it. This was just before our dinner and we were supposed to go straight to the turtle watch right after and photographs were not allowed during that activity. You watch the turtles in total darkness and the guides have a special red light to look at the turtles laying their eggs. So, I left my camera in the room and did not get the chance to take a photo of this gorgeous sunset.



Here are some of the photos the company took of our group white water rafting in the rapids. They were really great! Our smiles look all genuinely thrilled and the expressions on our faces were priceless!





I have to include the next three photos. Capturing the guide losing his balance with his legs up in the air is just impressive!!







He was okay and swam right back to his boat.

I also mentioned there were a few who went floating instead of rafting. These were the animals they saw...



A crocodile!


Macaws


A beautiful toucan


An ocelot


A jaguar


Here is the table of Maleku art I mentioned earlier. The guides of course had the presence of mind to take a photo of it. Many of the boys got the cylindrical tube called a rainmaker. It makes a sound when you shake it, like the sound of beans being shaken.



And this is the beautiful sunset in Guanacaste...



Looks like the online photo system improved since it began earlier this year. It also looks like we got all the photos and no missing ones.
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Old 08-22-2013, 05:54 PM   #168
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tufbuf, glad ABD seemd to be improving with their cloud system, and that your online photo experience has been good so far.

I think the idea of the rainmaker is, if you turn it upside down, the beans sliding from one end to the other sounds like falling rain...

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Old 08-22-2013, 06:11 PM   #169
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tufbuf, glad ABD seemd to be improving with their cloud system, and that your online photo experience has been good so far.

I think the idea of the rainmaker is, if you turn it upside down, the beans sliding from one end to the other sounds like falling rain...

Sayhello
Yes! I am really glad!! I was hoping they improve it by now since I heard of reports of missing photos and all. Particularly this trip, it is sometimes a challenge to have a camera for all the activities. In fact, with my own camera, I only had one shot of myself and no family photos.

I guess that's how the rainmaker is used. I didn't really ask but the kids love it!!

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Old 08-22-2013, 06:48 PM   #170
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Originally Posted by tufbuf View Post
Yes! I am really glad!! I was hoping they improve it by now since I heard of reports of missing photos and all. Particularly this trip, it is sometimes a challenge to have a camera for all the activities. In fact, with my own camera, I only had one shot of myself and no family photos.

I guess that's how the rainmaker is used. I didn't really ask but the kids love it!!

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I don't think the missing pictures were related to the photos being online. Our trip was in March, and we got the photos (very late) in May on a DVD and a lot of them were missing. I asked ABD to upload them to the new website hoping that the DVD was the issue and they really had more somewhere, but there were no additional photos. They said they would check with the guides and see if there were more photos and get back to me. That was over a month ago and I haven't heard anything. With the amount of time that had passed, I don't think the guides would have them anymore anyway. But my impression is that the problem was getting the photos from the guides in the first place. Not sure why that was an issue this year. I never experienced it or heard of anybody having that problem in the past. I'm glad all of your photos were there.

Last edited by Bobo912; 08-22-2013 at 07:24 PM.
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Old 08-23-2013, 08:11 AM   #171
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This should be another item for the "worth it" thread
The pictures the guides get and the rest of us don't. My DH takes some amazing photos, but we never never get 1- photos of him and 2- photos where the whole family " poses" ( he hates those!) For others it will be "watery" photos because they don't have a waterproof camera, yet others the wildlife photos because they don't have a big enough zoom or spot things "fast" enough to catch it. So with ABD, getting all these pics really gives every family something special!

In our case for our CR trip, we lost our water camera after packing it with all the other wet "water stuff" in a checked bag (really stupid mistake- we should have at least taken the card out!) When it passed through customs/security, and we retrieved the bag, the camera was not in the bag, and we were heartbroken! Luckily, we had the ABD pics, and were so thankful! The story ends well though, a year later we dug out that bag for another trip and found the camera in a pocket we never use! The inspector must have pulled the camera out since it looked suspicious and electronic wrapped in wet bathing suits, but then just chucked it into the nearest pocket rather than put it back with all our other stuff in the main pocket!

Those sunsets pics are beautiful, tuf- and I love the guide falling during rafting- everyone else in the raft is oblivious that they are now guide less in crocodile infested waters
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Old 08-23-2013, 03:45 PM   #172
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I just saw that this has been added too! Looks like a great trip tufbuf! I skimmed it quickly and will come back to really read it but wow! you had a different trip than I did. The rain and bugs bites were not a part of my trip and Oh! I wish we had gone snorkeling instead of horseback riding too. Next time!
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Old 08-28-2013, 11:47 AM   #173
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Thx so much for adding the rafting and hot springs pics. Next time I bring a waterproof camera. Really great report on what the trip is like during rainy season. DD says she wants to go in August now to get that experience too
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Old 08-28-2013, 02:22 PM   #174
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Thx so much for adding the rafting and hot springs pics. Next time I bring a waterproof camera. Really great report on what the trip is like during rainy season. DD says she wants to go in August now to get that experience too
My pleasure! I was the only one who had a camera on hand during those two activities, and Lucy, our other guide. I was only able to take photos of the rafting during the calm areas. The action shots taken by the company, I think were great! It was also nice the guides bought our photos from them and include in our online photos.

It is a very different experience from yours. I was bracing myself from the heat based on your report and repeatedly "warned" my heat intolerant DD about the heat. I think this Is the one time we are glad to be "disappointed".
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Old 04-09-2014, 03:54 PM   #175
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I just read all 12 pages... And I'm getting excited and nervous for my first ABD trip.
I'm worried about bug bits (as bugs love my family) humidity ( as I live in a state w/ no humidity ) and getting motion sick on the bus.
Would it be odd if I asked to sit up front ( and my family can sit elsewhere on the bus?
Can I pack some of my own snacks?
While rafting do they really try up dump the raft? ( did I read that correct?)
Thank you for your guidance!!
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Old 04-09-2014, 04:18 PM   #176
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If you tell the guides you have motion sickness they will save a seat in the front for you. It's not strange. People do it all the time. I took bug spray along, but never needed it. I was there the last week of July, if that makes any difference. The guides carry bug spray too.
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Old 04-13-2014, 09:33 PM   #177
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more help please

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Oh! That "Day Bag" they have you pack to go to Tortuguero is actually an OVERNIGHT Bag. Totally different, right? I was prepared to pack a bathing suit and change of clothes only to find out I needed pjs and toothbrush etc. We were given a very nice bag - one per family though some families managed to bring more, I'm not sure how. Me & La Chica managed ok but missed the rest of our luggage terribly lol
Please explain....so when you leave the Marriott the first morning....you get a "day bag"? When do you get your real luggage back?
So extra clothes? bathroom items? itch cream!!

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