We have friends seriously considering retiring to Costa Rica. They are spending three months living la pura vida before deciding whether to move south of the border. While Jim and my hub travel on business this week, I am enjoying a one week Central American adventure.
The flight from Fort Lauderdale, Florida to San Jose, Costa Rica was uneventful. As the trip began flight attendants recited the obligatory emergency procedures. Then an attendant announced the availability of food and drinks for sale. She emphasized the fact that there would be no free anything on this trip - not even water. "Everything is for sale," she said.
Spirit Air achieves a new level of customer no-service, no-frills flying.
A half hour after landing, I slid into the driver's seat of a manual transmission, four wheel drive Daihatsu - my friend Jane is not yet a proficient manual car driver - and we were off on the two hours plus drive to our temporary quarters.
Roads were well paved but windy, changing often from one lane to two, then merging back to one lane. A limited access highway covered part of the distance, but most of the trip we meandered through small towns and over mountains, the road populated by cars as well as cyclists, pedestrians, and motorbikes.
We stopped for lunch at a café along the road, feasting on a plate of chicken, rice, cooked vegetables, salad, black beans, and soft drinks. After eating we started to return our dishes to the front counter, but the waitress rushed over saying, "No, no, no." I felt we were insulting the employees. The staff cleared the tables.
The food was delicious. The bill was 8,000 colones - $16.
We stopped again to ogle crocodiles. Crocs find a specific spot on a river below a bridge along the road perfect for sunning, feeding, and simply hanging out. The place has become a tourist spot, lined with cars and souvenir vendors. But the crocs do not disappoint, spending hours every day unknowingly entertaining visitors and locals.
We finally reached our accommodations on the Pacific coast at sunset - 6:00 p.m. The area is famous for its surf, attracting vacationers from around the world.
Our cabin is rustic by American standards. But I cannot post pictures now and mere words do not do justice to the real thing. Description and pictures will follow, sometime. Now I am temporarily using my friend's computer.
I do not surf, but am looking forward to enjoying the warm weather, tropical landscape, flora and fauna, local foods, and exploring the area.