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Costa Rica 2008

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Day 1

Puntarenas, Costa Rica

Providence-->Boston-->Miami-->San Jose, CR-->Puntarenas, CR

I took the 8:10pm Commuter Rail train from Providence to Boston where I was met by Jason--we took the Orange Line T to his dorm and then we hung out with his crazy roommates for a while. I was way tired so while they partied, I took a short nap from 11:30pm-2am. Jason and his roommate from Boston named Eddie woke me up by jumping on the bed--of course being obnoxious and wonderful all at the same time. Like good gentlemen, they walked me to the taxi hub where I picked up a taxi to take to Logan. My driver was from Somalia and had a great interest in my academic work--he himself is getting a degree in healthcare management.

When I arrived at the airport at like 3:15am, the American Airlines ticket counter wasn't open yet. After a bit, they finally started checking passengers in. Check-in was a breeze and so was security. The flight departed promptly at 5:30am and I slept literally all but 12 minutes from Boston to Miami. After arriving in Miami, I had about 1.5 hrs before my next flight took off. The airport there is crazy--you can totally tell it is the gateway to Latin America. While waiting for the plane, I met a nice Tico (it's what the locals call themselves) man who was giving me suggestions on what to do while in his home country.

I arrived about 15 minutes before Karol (who flew from Newark) and was a little nervous at first because I didn't know how easy it would be to find her without the convenience of a cell phone. I made friends in the Immigration line with a 45ish looking woman traveling alone to do some body workshop or something (I didn't fully understand) who didn't speak a word of Spanish. Right before I was called to go through Immigration, I saw Karol enter the back of the line. Perfect timing! She cut ahead and we proceeded through immigration, to baggage claim, and then through customs. All really easy.

Next we tried to rent a car--we chose a Costa Rican company because we figured they would be more lenient renting to us with Karol's expired license. Ha. We were kidding ourselves. No rental car, on to the taxi. Oh, it's important to mention we arrived on Good Friday and the entire country was pretty much shut down--no buses running at all. We were met by a mob of taxi drivers all telling us they were the best. Karol and I decided to go from San Jose to Puntarenas via taxi (which was this dude's little Hyundai) and she managed to bargain the price down to $80. The taxi ride took about 1.5 hrs and we stopped to buy fruit on the way. Two mangoes, plantain chips, some nasty coconut thing Karol wanted...and something else I can't remember what for US $6.

When we arrived in Puntarenas (El Puerto as the locals call it), we stayed at Hotel Alamar right on the beach. We settled in and then attempted to go to the beach but threw that idea out the window about 15 minutes after we got there because the sand was blowing like crazy. Back to the hotel for dinner (I had spaghetti and some salad and Karol and I shared french fries--great combo, I know), and Karol chicken w mushroom sauce, rice, and veggies. We took a stroll around the town but there wasn't a whole lot to see. Watched the sunset and enjoyed not having to be anywhere or do anything in particular. We scoped out the ferry we would take the next day, and came across some ridiculous Jesus procession with crazy music. Jesus was in a see through casket carried by 6 men and Mary was following him (she stood about 20 feet high) carried by 4 women. Unlike anything I've ever seen before.

After the procession, we chilled on the beach for a little longer then went back to the room and fell asleep around 8pm.

permalink written by  seektruth2 on March 23, 2008 from Puntarenas, Costa Rica
from the travel blog: Costa Rica 2008
tagged Day1

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Pre-Trip 5:03pm

Providence, United States

I'm sitting at home preparing my last minute travel stuff, including starting/finishing my packing! I think I am more of my mother's daughter than I realize sometimes...

Today has been filled with anticipation, a little nervousness, excitement, and errands! It's sort of hard to explain how I'm feeling right now, but it's a good feeling. Harry will be picking me up in a few hours to take me to the Amtrak Station in downtown Providence where I will catch the commuter rail to the Back Bay stop in Boston. I will be met there by my friend Jason who goes to Northeastern, spend some time hanging with him and his friends and then will call a taxi to Logan International airport around 2:30am.

My flight leaves at 5:30am (aka I probably won't be sleeping until the flight embarks) and I will arrive in Costa Rica at 10:55am on the 21st. Costa Rican time is the same as Mountain Time in the US (so it's currently 5:11pm in Providence and 3:11pm in Costa Rica).

I'm going to try to update this as much as possible while I'm there. Apparently internet cafes are very popular.

The anticipation and excitement brews...

permalink written by  seektruth2 on March 20, 2008 from Providence, United States
from the travel blog: Costa Rica 2008
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