Costa Rica Retroactive Diary Day 5: Goddamn Bloodsuckers!!!

27 Feb

Hypercortizone eased my discomfort for seconds at a time. But it didn’t help much. Looked like I had a really bad rash, or poison oak, or elephantitis. Every time my arm itched my temper flared. I remembered when Paul thought I broke the laundry machine and he (jokingly?) suggested that I could stay an extra couple of weeks and work the costs off. The nerve of this guy huh?

At this point I knew I was heading for the hot springs in San Gerardo, from there maybe go to Domenical to get some beach time.

Sleeping the night before in this (two bit) motel: arms on fire, sirens going off, Calypso music playing down the street, fireworks going off, and my throat was hurting. Some vacation. It was like I was actively seeking  higher levels of discomfort by the day.

But I wasn’t as overwhelmed as when I first got into the country.  Despite the craziness this was still a good choice. Made me wonder about Mazatlan and El Bolson…..some day soon for both cities…..and I’d definitely would be ready.

It seemed like the more uncomfortable I got, the more I valued the experience. My throat was burning and my body felt like it was wilting from dehydration.

Luckily for me, on Costa Rican buses, people are allowed to come aboard on stops and sell stuff. Two Ticos jumped onto the bus selling chips, sodas, and “pipa” juice. I bought myself two bags of coconut water and drank them up (Hepatitis be damned).

I immmediately felt better.  In two short weeks I’d be returning to the states a completely different person.  Hopefully I’d be more confident, feel more solid. I’d survived a couple of weird scrapes so far and my Spanish was actually fairly decent for a negro gringo. I was starting to consider the option of teaching English in a foreign country…Japan maybe?????

Quite beautiful here. One of the nicest bus rides one can ever take (and cheapest 12 dollars for a 300km ride)  Cute little thang checking me out….dark skin, nice body…maybe 18 years of age. She seems DTF, which means she may have an STD.

Earlier in the ride I had a gal’s strong buttocks rested against my shoulders, and supported my back muscles. Then I had a guy’s crotch in my face for the next 40 kms.  He was polite though so I didn’t mind too much.

Cumbia music playing on the busses. I spotted a white kid and his mother and two sisters. “Hey Yankee.” I yell. “Where you going?”

Turns out he’s going the same place I am. Chirripo National Park. I follow him and his family to the a hostel and squeeze into the same place. Turns out we’re bunkmates–all five of us.  They are from Amherst, Massachussetts, which isn’t far at all from where I stayed out in the Berkshires. Nice people, they’ve even hiked part of the Appalachian Trail.

The mountain itself was beautiful and overlooked everything. The fog came up a couple a hours after we checked into our hostel. The way it ate up everything around me reminded me of the Berkeley fog out in the bay area.

It felt good up here. The hostel was really nice. Casa Mariposa. Run by two married ex-pats from Arizona. This had bed and breakfast written all over it. In the States you’d pay at least 45 bucks for a room here. Nice showers, wood everywhere. This was the first time I’d felt comfortable the whole trip.

I spent the night talking to a very lovely young lady from upstate New York and went to bed happy. So far this was the best part of the trip. I had no idea how long I was going to stay but it felt so good to be able to relax again.  I slept like a baby that night.


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