Friday, March 6, 2009


When we last left our heroes, they were just leaving the hustle and bustle of the city for the greener pastures of the rest of Costa Rica. Christian and I took a bus to this little port town on the coast so that we could take the ferry across the bay to the penninsula and then another bus to Montezuma. The bus ride was a few hours long on all these treacherous looking mountains. I had foolishly gotten the window seat and soon regretted it because I could look straight down into an abbyss about 4 inches from the side of the bus that was driving what felt like really fast on narrow and sometimes dirt roads. The best part, though was that the sun set while we were on it and we could look out on this sunset that looked like it was out of The Neverending Story or something. I couldn´t take a picture because none of the pictures here have been turning out as good as the scenes are in real life - and, oh yeah, I seemed to have misplaced my camera at the lebanese restaurant and I´m just hoping Brennan can get it back for me, but who knows? So there were also these Swiss girls on the bus who were really cool and it turned out we were going to the same hotel, so we talked ot them for a long time about cultural differences and such. They´re traveling around for a month. By the way, all of the punctuation on this computer is in the wrong place, so it´ll probably be wrong - just go with it. So we got to Puntarenas and stayed at this cutesy little hotel there - cinderblock walls, lots of screens and fans because it was almost cool in the city (it´s in a valley) but the rest of Costa Rica is HOT, and bathrooms down the hall, just a bed and about a foot around it in the room- it was perfect. So we went for a walk on the beach, which we had heard was polluted so we had to run up every time a wave came, but then afterwards we found out we could´ve gotten in it because it was the other side of the island that was polluted. Then we came back and sat with the Swedish girls, Sonya and Daniella, and talked more about culture, politics, etc. We got up in the morning and went to breakfast and were taking our time but then realized we had to hurry to catch the ferry. We were carrying all our stuff, which is ridiculously heavy, most of the town smells like a mix of pee, poop and fish, it was I´m pretty sure like 120 degrees (not sure in celsius) and we got lost, so that was horrible and I was super mad by the time we got on the ferry. Luckily it´s an hour trip and I had really good trailmix, so I was better after that. They hearded us off like cattle and we got on another 2 hour busride to montezuma. We had heard great things about it and we really stoked, but when we got there, it was really touristy, and everything was like twice as much as the guidebook said it would be. We had picked up these other two guys from New York on the bus, Ryan and Matt, so they were saying there was another town north of there that had a great beach. We decided to go there and rode the bus back to the town where we transferred buses. We had to wait over and hour, and in the meantime we were talking to these other people at the bus stop heading to Montezuma and they were really cool. There were these Californians here, Kristen and Gabe, who were staying here for 3 months or longer because Kristen teaches Yoga and Gabe is a forest firefighter, so is off for 6 mos at a time. We were saying how it was expensive to get a place and she goes, Oh, well you could sleep on our beach (the place they´re renting is literally right on the sand). Um...yeah, of COURSE we want to sleep on your beach. Se we went back from whenst (?) we came and hung out with the Californians and New Yorkers, and then build a fire on the beach and were sitting around. We´d also met some Canadians at the busstop and they came too. There was this one girl, Vivian, and this is her first stop in a 1.5 year trip all over the world by herself (!) and this guy she´d met in San Jose, Aaron, who has a wife and 3 kids, and has traveled so much that his kids are homeschooled so they can travel more, has sailed all over and lived in I don´t even know how many countries. So we sat around and talked to them with a fire, then slept on the beach and woke up to the most ridiculously perfect and beautiful beach scene (it was dark when we came in so this was the first time seeing it). We went swimming right away and there´s this place where there´´s a huge rock and the wave will come around it from either side, so behind it and in front of the shore rocks is this this place where you float and the waves just carry you back and forth back and forth about 20 feet. Awesome. Then we came to town, ate fresh papaya and avocado for breakfast, and now I´m typing before we spend the whole day getting a tan (Christian´s will be in spots) and then this evening taking a shower in this waterfall that just happens to be about 200 yards from where we´re staying. We decided to save the volcano hikes for another time, but after we´re here for a few days, we´ll be heading up the coast to Nicaragua. I´ll keep you updated. Pura Vida.

1 comment:


Chuchi - this is probably my new most popular word. It means snobby or fancy, but is used in the Peace Corps as anything nicer than dirt roads and shacks, or for a person, anyone who showers with hot water. Living in the city, I am super chuchi for here.

Fuerte - literally means strong, but because the culture is based on talking around everything, it´s when a person says anything they want in a direct way - it means asshole

Puede ser and otro dia - literally means "could be" or "another day", but because noone will directly blow someone off, both of them mean "never" and are the answer to a question of when something will happen

Deseas, en tus sueños, Que Arriba Perra/o and Es lo qué es - these are the terrible translations of American sayings that are not used here and don´t really translate, but we say them anyway. Literally they mean "you wish", "in your dreams", "What´s up bitch/dog?" and "it is what it is"

Qué guapa - this means "what a hard worker" and is used by Paraguayans every time I do ANYTHING manual, including carrying a dish to the sink or sweeping out my room. I don´t think they have high expectations for Americans and work.

Saludos - sending saludos by way of a mutual friend is how people tell each other they have a crush on them. The most serious kinds are given with a pinch on the arm and they mean business.

Thumbs up - this is done everywhere here and is a simple answer to pretty much any question. I will probably have carpal tunel in my thumbs when I leave here because I do this so much.

No se como comer esta - this is how one refuses food in Paraguay. Literally, it´s "I don´t know how to eat this" which creates an internal struggle for me each time it´s said because I want to be a smartass and explain that, just like any other food, you put in in your mouth and chew, but I don´t think that´s acceptable here.

No Más and Un poco - this is said after almost every phrase for no real reason other than to make everything sound like it´s not a big deal, even when it really is. Literally, it´s "No More" and "A Little", so the translations are something like "Sit down no more", "Come here a little", and "Do you want dinner no more?"

Cocido - this is a hot drink mixed by carmellizing sugar with a little yerba, adding just enough water to wet it, and then adding more sugar. It´s served by the thermos-full just before bed.

Mosto - this is to sugar what crack is to cocaine. It´s a "tradional" drink capable of putting even the sweetest tooth into a diabetic coma, and is served continuously at fun gatherings like funerals.

Ch-ch-ch-ch - this is the sound Paraguayans make to get each others´attention - like "Psst" . It´s especially used for catcalling, and they have nothing to follow it with - they just want you to look.