BW: Consider me gone.
16th Jan 2012
Pura Vida Loco
The last day of my tenth week was a better than expected travel day but also more frustrating in a different way as it was also my first real experience with the public transport system here instead of paying big bucks for the tourist shuttles, else riding Victoria’s coat tails. Costa Ricans, or Ticos as they call themselves, fancy themselves to be far superior to their neighbors that I have told you about and I am assuming that this snobbyness is at the core of their Pura Vida slogan. I already related how Rita says that they speak a purer, or whatever, version of Spanish, and I have already told you what shitty drivers they are, and complained about those who have motorcycles love to slow traffic down behind them rather than use them for their intended purposes, but basically today their pretentiousness manifest itself in not being able to get on or off a bus like normal courteous human beings which added about two hours to my travel day and costs god only knows what in annual bus fuel consumption in a country that is allegedly obsessed with the environment. Yes, you don’t litter, yes, you don’t have beggars, yes, you have nicer buses, yes, you don’t put 6,000 people on them, but let it begin and end there, because I know from your slackjawed stares that you are not more evolved than anyone else on this isthmus.
The day started with me being jerked awake by the sounds of Massimo and Anais playing outside my door. That’s a new one. And I drank coffee, spiking one with the shot of rum that I had somehow overlooked in the Roquez bottle, did some joga, put my toes in the water for the last time passing yet another salesman with his “Couple of chairs, bro?” come on, stopping long enough to ask “Do you even know what couple means? Do I look like a couple or will I not fit on just one?, had my typical breakfast, got my typical post breakfast belly ache, took a shower, locked myself out of my room for the first time of the trip, packed it up, leaving behind the SPF 4 and 30 and the can of Off, and got kinda lucky. The bus pulled up right as I got there and dropped me over the hill in Quepos where I got on a roomy bus that left straight off for Puntarenas. The girl behind me was nursing and for some reason thought it best to have her shirt pulled all of the way down. If she was 18, her babby daddy was not. It was 11:30. According to the schedule, they leave at 10:30 and 12:30. I have no idea which of those two it was, and a bit in I realized that I had popped a half of a xanax rather than my usual half a lomotil, and a legless guy in a wheelchair gets on via the handicapped door and its elevator, which is something new. I remember helping load one in through the back door in Ometepe and can’t imagine how they get around everywhere else. Jaco looked better coming in from the south instead of landing on the muddy beach and I thought that I should have stayed there last night, and we continue on and these people, well, the bus comes to a complete stop, which is strange enough down here already, and then instead of getting on, the passenger looks at it for a bit, aloof, like it is just noticing it for the first time and considers whether to get on or not, like they did not know that a bus was going to be there. And they finally climb the stairs and the driver, instead of taking off and making change as he drives, waits until each and every person has paid and received their change and closes the lid on the cash drawer and then eases the bus into gear. And when it is time to get off, instead of standing up and walking towards the exit as the bus is approaching your stop, they pull the rope to signal the driver, and when the bus has finally reached a full stop, they think for a minute before finally standing and making their way to the exit. And it would not make me so mad, I mean it is not like I was in a rush to get to the thriving inland megalopolis of Liberia, but for the fact that I have a 7AM flight and should probably be in the 5 o’clock bus, unfed, under slept and uncaffineated, with my normal anxiety about getting to the airport on time, and cursing what will probably be slow moving lines since hurrying doesn’t seem to be in them, though I do recall that Victoria was out about 5 minutes after her plane touched down. I got a cab from a block away from here that day for $10.00. Apparently the going rate at that time of the day is $20.00 according to the girl at the desk and the Oregonians next door whose plane to Houston leaves at 7:50.
So, we continue on, I have lots of space, I have not sweat a drop, to Puntarenas, a long finger that sticks out into the water, 115 kilometers to Liberia from where we turned off at 1:54, equal parts yacht club and corrugated tin slum, and I get off of the bus at two and the bus to here leaves at three and we are on the water and a nice cool breeze is blowing, and it has an ugly beach but is not without charm and maybe I should have stayed here last night, and I stroll around and buy food for the bus and look at girls in bikinis and say goodbye to mother ocean and get on another Mercedes at 3 and leather seats in the sun are not a great idea and fat women get on and get off two blocks later and we tour the town and at 3:30 pop out on the main road 123 kilometers away from Liberia. It was down to 75 by 4:28 and we pulled in at 6:20 after watching the sun set through the bus window without a beer in my handand I was in this room by 6:45, my first bunk bed of the trip and at 9:45 after a decent dinner here for four bucks and a few beers, I have to be up in 6 hours and 45 minutes. I have filled my three airline bottles with Ron Colorado, and now I am going to read and finish the bottle.
|16th Jan 2012 Massimo & Anais in their playpen|
|16th Jan 2012 Liberia: First dorm bed of the trip|
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