After we had a good look around Will`s work place we grabbed a bus out towards Las Fuentes Georginas- well known hot springs in the area. A chicken bus ride left us off about 20 mins short of our destination, from there we had to hire a truck to take us the rest of the way. Of course there were many trucks waiting.
Having ridden in several truck beds before i must say, this was a significant step up, it was awesome actually. The truck bed is lined with metal walls to lean on and has several bars to grab as well. It felt a lot like surfing on a car and a little like flying.
The view was fantastic. We got to see a huge amount of agricultural land in production. The farms were doing quite well compared to most that i`ve seen around the country. Will said they`ve had a fairly developed irrigation systyem for quite some time, and sure enough eveywhere we looked there were sprinklers keeping everything wet during the dry season. Though the malfunctioning ones were often augmented by a human, literally, turning slowly in place holding the semi-broken mechanism. I... can`t even imagine.
About half way through the trip we saw a volcanoe erupt in the distance. I think it was a first for all of us, except Will, and very (very) exciting.
Will said "you know, we can climb that volcanoe there and watch the eruption from above." We were sold.
The hot springs were stunning. Far up green covered mountainsides large swaths of exposed rock guided sulfur-heated water into a series of large pools. The pools were built up some with rocks walls, but not distastefully. The whole thing was quite enchanting. And, as in most of these situations its easy to fantasize about having the whole place entirely to your self. No cheesy pick lines being drunkenly delivered, no squealing kids, no men in speedos that really shouldn`t be wearing speedos- the one thing gringos don`t want from their travels is to run into other gringos. This seems pretty ubiquitous.
Though, i was very happy to make friends with these adorable little kids. I love how little kids are pretty much the same no matter where you go- they`re curious, they want to play, everything is super exciting- its a good reminder that we are not as dissimilar as we sometimes believe.
After an hour or so of sitting in the springs, jumping out to take cold showers and jumping back in, we decided we were ready to move on. The springs were more enjoyable to look at then to be in, they were often pleasant hot tub temperature, but just as often not-so-pleasant hot tub x 2. One thing that was really interesting about the springs was that, without exerting any force at all, you would sweat a huge amount, but you`d never know it because you`re already wet. Coming out you feel relaxed but drained, and really really thirsty. It was an odd combination of feelings.