I had to be on the inaugural trip with Under30Experiences to Costa Rica, the origin of eco-tourism. I traveled around Costa Rica for a month after the trip ended. I was in Lake Arenal at the Volcano Brewing Company on December 21, 2012 and in a wild bout of inspiration, I wrote down an idea:
- Grow our own organic food
- Build with natural and recycled materials
- Provide tours/experiences that connect with real people
The day after I wrote this down, I stumbled across Rancho Margot and was elated to see someone else had already built this idea and so much more. They had a volunteer program and so I thought the best way I’m going to learn how to build something like this is to learn from someone whose already on the path.
A few months later, I came back as a volunteer (after declining my father’s offer) and dove head first into eco tourism. I learned the word permaculture for the first time and my mind was blown. Most days I would: practice yoga, work on the farm, eat food I helped grow, drink locally sourced coffee, go for a walk in the rainforest, and then go swimming naked in the river. This is where I began to rekindle an intimate relationship with nature.