Costa Rica Retroactive Diary day 4, Part Deux

4 Feb

I sat on the porch watching the clouds swell up and release. The rain came down and I waited, fuming.  Let me explain something real fast about Costa Rica. Eco-tourism is a big hit down there. And tourism is the main source of economy down there. So even to volunteer on a farm, one must pay a few dollars for room and board.

I of course had no real experience working on a farm so I viewed it as taking a training course. I’d pay the money, see some bad ass scenery  and learn a few things.

I’d paid up front for a week’s stay and since I was leaving early, he owed me money. I sat around waiting for a few minutes but the more I thought about this man’s instability, the less valuable my money became.

I saw this scene playing out.

Me: “Give me my money motherfucker.”

Paul: “Yea. your money, gimme a second to go get it. [opens up a drawer and pulls out a pistol and shoots me several times–as I flail about with every fired shot] Keep the change……. you filthy animal!!!!”

Absurd I know. Yet what was to keep him from doing it? He seemed the kind of cheap bastard to do something like that over 80 bucks. What was stopping him from killing me and burying me out in the jungle somewhere? He could do it and get away with it. Tell people I just left like some drifter.

Who’d know? No one knew specifically where I was in Costa Rica.  He didn’t even have to bury me and my belongings in the jungle. He could say it was self defense. I was colored (his words not mine) and I was on his property.

Seemed the safe bet would be to hike into town, get the fuck out and email him about the refund.  So I stopped by Efran’s little house on my way into town to say goodbye.

He and his sexy wife smelled of perfumed products and looked like they were going out 9possibly dancing). They said old Paul was off his gourd and that when he wasn’t in D.C. and on the farm property things didn’t run as smoothly. They offered me a ride and I took them up on it. I figured I could head to the cabinas that the Canucks had stayed at and then form a game plan.

But not before I gave them a push to start their 4×4. Viv and I pushed and pushed and she almost fell in the mud as the car sped off. I had to grab her by the waist to keep her upright. We hopped in the car and I sat next to their son Manuel–hitting every bump in the road along the way.

Even at dusk, people were out. Walking, riding their horses, standing outside and talking.  It was exactly how I’d imagine Costa Rica to be. Of course everyone knew everyone (but not in the nosy bible thumping small town way) and the family waved in recognition at everyone we passed.

They dropped me off at the guy’s property who owned the cabinas. He ran the place with his wife and kids. It had an outside bar (where people were singing karoake) and swimming pool in addition to the 3 big cabins. The guy had his own Tilapia pond, a zip line across the creek and a soccer field where they played on Sundays.

Unfortunately it was a Saturday and they only had 3 cabins. I knew it’d be iffy because of how lively the place seemed in comparison to earlier in the week. Sure enough, they were full. So I told him my situation (in Spanish mind you) and that it was an emergency. I needed a place to sleep the guy on the farm had gone loco and did he know somewhere I could go for fairly cheap.

“Estas Bien.” he said. ” Se de un hotel de mi amiga estan una vacancy.”

He called a cab (which was really a 20 year old with a car) and I reluctantly put my things into his car.

“Pura Vida.”  The man said. I was in good hands, but after the farm I was no longer sure of  anything anymore. I got into the car and the kid drove me deeper into a part of Siquerres I had yet to see. In the states these neighborhoods would be considered sketchy and that was before we drove through what looked like a set for “Children of God.”

Kids just standing around on the corners. People just out. All I was waiting for was the sneakers on the telephone poles.

I reached for the knife in my pocket and shifted it to a place where I could grab it easily. Clearly this young man was going to take me into a place where I could be robbed and stabbed to death. I had no idea where I was and I was fucked.

Well Bobby, you wanted adventure and you were about to get it.

Finally he pulls into this shady looking apartment complex and whistles.

A nice old Tico woman with glasses comes walking up and says she has a room for 10 bucks. I look around and realize its a hotel. The hotel that my driver said was really nice. I paid the cabby 8 bucks (he had no meter inside the car) and paid her 10 bucks and she unlocked a pad lock to a room (think ACE motel in Austin on Manor street–doors on the outside) and I walked in.

There was a white curtain with flower patterns where there should have been a bathroom door. I slammed the door shut and pulled out my blade, violently ripped open the curtain and saw a toilet without a lid– and a shower that was a little nicer than a university dorm’s (on those weekends where there wasn’t custodian service) I had no shower shoes so it was going to be interesting. I was just happy there wasn’t anyone waiting to knife me on the other side of the curtain.

I put my stuff on the floor and sat down on the bed (but not before checking the mattress for dead whores and bed bugs). It was not the nicest room I’d ever stayed in but for 10 bucks it was going to have to do.  There was a “restaurant” in the hotel. Which ended up just being a picnic table on the patio and I sat down with a Lonely Planet and a menu.

I ordered the fish and french fries and two cans of Jugo. Then I opened up the Lonely Planet, found a city with a hot springs and decided to go to San Gerardo de Rivas. The lovely woman had two sons one who spoke decent English and between my broken Spanish and his broken English we were able to figure out my cab situation to get to the bus terminal. And from there we figured out which buses I needed to take and what times I needed to catch them.

The Tico family were very sweet and helpful and I felt foolish for my paranoia earlier in the evening. I was quickly realizing just how nice Ticos were outside of the city of San Jose. I’d read so much about crime and theft in the San Jose area (and felt so overwhelmed when I first flew in-I got out of there as soon as I could.) that it worked me into a frenzy. That coupled with the maniac plantation owner and I was seriously questioning my decision making.

So it felt great to be at ease and gracious. These Ticos were amazing. And to have been in such a tight bind and have everyone help me as best as they could was even more uplifting and humbling. The woman called the cab driver who dropped me off and he said he’d pick me up first thing at 6:30 AM to get me to the terminal.

I heartily ate me salty fish and fries and drank my thick juice and went to bed. It was 8:30 at night and I was exhausted. I was also coming down with a cold and my arms were itching like crazy. It was a good thing I had stolen some Anti-itch cream from the first aid kit at the farm.

I rubbed it vigorously onto my arms as the couple next door to me had embarrassingly loud sex (from the way she sounded dude must have been  knocking it out the park–I think I counted 8 orgasms). This went on intermittenly til about 2:30 I think. I kept waking up to hear her loud moans. I had to admit I was fairly impressed with their stamina.

The Chico Bar hotel. Wow. It was sinking in that I was in a foreign country. I had come all this way to stay in quarters even filthier than the place I was living. My arms looked like I had leprosy, elephantitis and poisons ivy.

But something (my spirit guide maybe) was telling me that whatever my ailments a natural hot spring might cure.

Like it or not, my adventure had started. Though it was a bit more adventure than I wanted.  Though this certainly wasn’t what I had in mind when I went on vacation, using my Spanish to get me out of some jams was kind of fun. I was really finding out what I was all about. My adventure had officially began.


One Response to “Costa Rica Retroactive Diary day 4, Part Deux”


  1. Costa Rica Retroactive Diary day 4, Part Deux | California Bed Bugs - February 5, 2011

    […] from: Costa Rica Retroactive Diary day 4, Part Deux P.S. If you like this post, you can share it to Twitter or add it to […]

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