Maybe by now it’s sort of obvious how I got the ridiculous nickname “Jungle Princess,” but for my last post about my recent trip to Costa Rica, I thought I’d explain — and show how far I’ve come. As with everything these days (haha) it all started online. My friend Mike had signed me up on Twitter the day before I left my Las Vegas friends for the jungles of Costa Rica. I finally got into it a few months in, but all of the travel folks were confused… Where was my blog? they asked. (My what?!) Since my tweets were all about scorpions, spiders, monkeys, rain and not wearing high heels… Diana of DTravelsRound finally publicly tweeted something along the lines of, “Come on, jungle princess, you’re starting a blog tomorrow.”
So I did.
I didn’t know what I was doing, so I stole the name and threw up my blog. I kind of didn’t realize that two years later I’d still be stuck with that name.
It made sense. My last job had been at a celebrity magazine, so I had quite literally gone from the red carpet to the most laidback lifestyle you can imagine. And I had packed a few pairs of five-inch heels “just in case.” (Those went right into storage my first trip back.)
Miami, Manhattan, Las Vegas, Los Angeles… Coco? It was a strange move, but there it was. I lived in a darling one-room house with one piece of furntiture: bunkbeds. My friend Lisa lived right across the dirt road, which was convenient since I didn’t have a phone. I could easily yell at her while sitting on my bed working. (Common question: “When will you be done with work?”) Otherwise, I had thick trees surrounding my home (hence the critters).
The scorpion thing really set me apart from my friends who were more accustomed to Costa Rica — I never, ever got used to them. My friend Denise tried to show me many times how to aim with a shoe, but yuck. During my recent trip, I saw the biggest scorpion I had ever seen. Lisa and her husband, Mau, agreed!
The first time I saw a tarantula, I was in someone else’s home, and I was so scared I couldn’t move. The second time, I screamed to high heaven and jumped up on a chair. The third time (during this past trip)? I calmly took out my camera and took this photo.
At times, I get so sick of hearing “Jungle Princess”!!! But it does make sense, even if I have moved back to city life. From now on, I will always be either the girl who packed stilettos for her first trip to the tropics, or the fancy editor who moved to Las Vegas from the jungle.
Two sides, one girl.
I’ll take it.