Sunday, February 19, 2017

Costa Rica Day 4 - Please Do Not Feed The Crocodiles

Friday, January 27, 2017

Just looked at the other pages of me putting up my trip and I'm a full friggin' year behind! I'm still mentally in 2016. Fixed now.

This day could have also been called 'How I Broke My IPhone' or 'Jim Keeps Suzanne Out Of Jail By Refusing To Allow Her To Toss Monkey Poo At The Kardashians'

We got up that morning and my asthma was no better. I was still wheezing so much that the day was filled with me pushing in drugs and gulping down coffee and Coke Light (the closest thing to Diet Coke available there - it tastes a lot like that old soft drink Tab). I was a deranged caffeine addicted wheezing weasel for the day.

Right after a lot of coffee inhaling Jim and I went for a walk on Tamarindo Beach. Supposed to beone of the best beaches in the world. I wasn't impressed, dirty and small on that first morning. IWhen we emerged from the wooden walkway of death (lots of rotten boards, but there were piles of termite nests in the trees) onto the beach area it was by the river inlet. I decided to wade/swim through the lagoon area to get to the sand bar where the beach proper started, with breaking waves and loads of surfers rather than walking down another 100 yards or so to the main beach.

No sooner had I stepped into the shallow lagoon water, firmly clutching my Iphone  that was shooting video than a lady, an American lady, started shouting at me to 'Get out of the water NOW!' When I turned to look at her the sand under my feet gave way and I faceplanted right into the water dropping my phone into the water. I got out cursing, spitting and dripping only to be told that at sunrise the crocodiles come down the river to feed, sometimes on random surfers and tourists. Ouch!

Then this lady launched into a nasty bitter recital of how Costa Rica sucked so much that they were leaving for good after ten years of going back and forth from Syracuse, New York. Much later I discovered that she was wrong about the crocodiles. There's only been one attack on that beach and it occurred two years before. I think she's likely wrong about a lot of things she said because she was upset by the prices and how the locals were ripping her off. Well, she is the most expensive tourist area in the entire country, whatta you expect? Even foolish I knows better than that.

We immediately put my phone in a ziplock bag of rice to try and dry it out. Didn't work and now I'm back to a janky old phone that's been sitting my dresser for two years unused.

While in Tamarindo we avoided eating at most of the tourist traps, preferring instead to go to the places the locals eat. If you ever need a cheap meal in Costa Rica look for a Soda (road side cafe) or our other favorite, a Fruitas stand (fruit stand sometimes with a grill). We usually will always order 'Tipico Comida', which is the local version of rice, beans, fruits, grilled meat, cheese and bread. The other good place we scoped out quickly was the coffee shop at Witch's Rock hotel. Every day during our time in Tamarindo we would get freshly made banana bread and a big tub of cut up watermelon, guava and pineapple to eat back in the room. I loved their closed sign - it read 'Surfing Pillow Beach' with a drawing of a bed piled with pillows.

We also had Jim's Nutty Buddy bars for him, and we went out for a light dinner nightly, picking up things at the local grocery and getting grilled chicken skewers beach side. I wasn't feeling much like eating with the asthma so the fruit lunch was perfect.

Jim tracked down the American owner of a local bookstore and other American expats running businesses in Tamarindo and sort of picked their brains about his pile of ideas. All this was followed by a nap, falling into the lagoon was exhausting, at least until the afternoon brown out happened. You could almost count on the power failing around the same time in the late afternoon in Tamarindo. No electricity for an hour or so, driving us back out to the beaches for sunset.

That first night we went out to a much fancier place for Margaritas and salads. Nice hotel tricked out with everything in a Polynesian style. 

Oh gawd I've wasted a lot of words on food. I guess it's because there is nothing we're eating here that is processed or filled with chemicals. It's made from scratch, tastes so much better and is so much cheaper than anything in the States.

I finally figured out that to get hot water in the shower you needed to flip a switch on the side of the shower head to activate the bare electrical wires wrapped around the shower head on the theory that it would heat the water enough. I've heard of these 'Shower of Death' situations from friends on mission trips to Cuba and to third world villages overseas, but this was my first time seeing one up close. No thanks, I'll make do with the cold water!

While the beach is beautiful I am finding I am not liking Tamagringo...err.. Tamarindo very much. Before we came Jim had said that he thought living near Tamarindo was going to be our best option in Costa Rica, most beautiful beaches, large American expat community and less third world than other places. Tamarindo is extremely crowded, and it's very touristy in the same way as Panama City Beach, Florida and other places that host Spring Break. Definitely a 'Spring Break' vibe here. Last night we slept very little because of the booming music and partiers about.

After I found out from the local news and the excited talk of the locals that the Kardashian family of E! Network was just one beach over filming their television show I started teasing Jim that he would have to bring me there just so I could fling monkey poo or a giant termite nest at them. Of all the wonderful things we have to export from America the thing that ends up here in Costa Rica is Wal Mart, Burger King and the Kardashians. Haven't the locals suffered enough?

Since I dropped my Iphone into water that day I have very few photos of that day until I switched over at sunset to using my Ipad. Here are a few of sunset on the beach at Tamarindo.

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