Tag Archives: Guanacaste 2006/2007

Last day in Liberia – Getting all things fixed before departure

sunny.gifBeautiful sunny weather. Blue sky and a few clouds over the mountains in the east. Some wind but still around +32C.

With the last day in Liberia arriving I got up at 6am to be at the airport at 7am to meet up with Irene to do the papers on my cargo. Papi drove me to the airport and we had a really nice conversation. Papi and Mami are going to San Jose later today to go to Guatemala tomorrow.

I arrived early for the meeting I had with Irene and I called her for our appointment. She came down, checked my boxes and went off to do paperwork. She said: wait for me for ONE hour. So I sat down and waited, reading my book and one hour passed, an hour and a half and with two hours I called her. Ill be right down was her answar. Right down TICO time !!. haha.. Not at all. Altogether I had to wait for 3 hours before she was done and I got to pay for the cargo, and fight a bit with the duane that did not want to declare my goods. So Irenes workbuddy took me back to Liberia and since the cargo wasnt declared I had to bring it back at 5:30 tomorrow. That is insanely early, and I wasnt allowed to leave it with them.

While I waited at the airport I sat with my back to a group of 3 men. One of the airport personell that cleans were washing the floor and accidentally wet one of the mens bag with all his belongings in it. As he took it out for drying it he put his working card at the chair and I saw it and it said Apu. Since Apu is Papis surname I asked the man if he was family with my family and It turns out I just got to know cousin William. We exchanged e-mails and had a nice talk before he had to enter the airport area.
Finally at home Papi lets me in and I prepared for taking off again.

I had to go and burn some of the pictures from my cameras memory sticks onto a CD or a DVD or something. So I went down to Cibermania to do it there and it took ages to download the pictures and David and Juan Gabriel helped me to download and burn the pictures. Mami and Papi called me every now and then to check when I was coming home but I had to wait till process was over.

Before I went home I had to stop and pick up a duvet for my bed in Norway and I got home way too late for lunch. Sad that I missed that but today is way too busy to dwell with that. I stayed home for an hour and packed and chatted with Natasha that got home early from school because she was sick. Mami asked me if I could stay and look after her but I still had a lot of arrands to run and people to meet.

I went out again when Mami and Papi headed for the Pulmitan to take the Bus to San Jose. They are going to leave from San Jose and not from Liberia like myself.
I stopped by Anas place to see if she ws gonna come to the good bye party at Las Tinajas later on tonight before I met Diego and we went to the tattoo parlor to see if they had any free time to redo my tattoo. D showed me the tattos I never knew he had as well. Tattoo Charlie was not free and we went to get a new job phone for Diego before he had to go back to Filadelfia.

At 6pm I was at las Tinajas and I sat down to wait for my friends to show up. Manuel and Victor showed up pretty soon and we had a lot of fun. Angelica and Ana was next before Karina, Katherine and Papi Corrales. It was a great night and I enjoyed the company of my friends a lot. We told jokes and laughed and had good drinks. I had to go home when Tinajas closed at 10pm so that I could get up early. Federico and my uncle let me in. Mamis brother sleeps over while they are in Guatemala to make sure the house is safe.

Federico told me to wake him up in the morning to take me to the airport and then my last day in Costa Rica was over.

During the day the sad news that one of the Bullfighters that got hurt yesterday died shortly after. This is the newspaper article on that sad story:

Johnny Mendez, Corresponsal

Las fiestas civicas de Liberia se vieron empanadas por la muerte de un torero improvisado.
LIBERIA.- La alegria que experimentaban los miles de liberianos en la celebracion de las fiestas civicas de la comunidad se vio opacada por la tragica muerte de un torero improvisado que participaba en las corridas.
La victima fue identificada como Henry Brenes Mendez, de 31 anos, quien resulto con traumas graves despues de ser prensado por el toro contra la barrera del redondel.

El lamentable incidente ocurrio a las 5.30 p.m. y 45 minutos despues perdio la batalla con la muerte cuando fallecio en la sala de emergencias del Hospital Enrique Baltodano, en Liberia. La plaza de Liberia es la mas grande del pais, lo que hace que los toros una vez iniciada su carrera agarren velocidad y no les den oportunidad a los atrevidos toreros de ponerse a salvo. El redondel se encontraba a reventar porque para nadie es un secreto la pasi├│n que despiertan las corridas entre los guanacastecos.

Las fiestas civicas de Liberia se vieron empanadas por la muerte de un torero improvisado.


Playa Hermosa – last day at the beach

sunny.gifIncredible sunny weather. +33C and no clouds. I can live with this !

Today I woke up at 7:30. It was wonderful to be able to sleep in and relax. I packed up some of my last stuff and have to realize the airport visit might be expensive. The suitcases weighs more than they are supposed to. Hehe. Well I have been here 3 months though. Cant expect anything else !

I had breakfast with Mami and then headed out for the beautiful sunny weather that we have. I stopped by at the local internet cafe and as I opened up an IE explorer window and starts logging into MSN Messenger the startup page of www.Cibermania.net I suddenly saw my name on the front page under the text of winners of the month !! Imagine that. The next last day I am here I win 15 free hours of internet use ! Luckily I can come back in 4 years and use them when I am back !!
This day turns out to be good !!!

As I was writing in my blog Ana called me and wanted to know if I was going to the swimmingpool as I had planned today. And I was as soon as I was done online. But Ana had other plans and gave me 15 minutes to get to her house so that I could go with her and her friends to the beach. Man this day gets better and better ! I finished up soon and on my way to Anas house I ran into a lot of people on horses getting ready for the noon parade. I even ran into Dona Consuelo and one of her friends and they had music orchestra, marimba instruments, clowns and lots of activities going on in Liberia downtown. It was almost more interesting to stay but a beach is a beach and Anas friends are really nice and good people so I went with them :)

condovac.jpgLiseth and Ana waited at her house, Marcos came and picked us up and then we went for Jason. During the trip I found out that lifes coincidences are very cool. Liseth is Freddys best friends sister. Freddy is one of the Ticos married in Oslo. She also knows Jason that lives at Tveita. I told her to definately come visit us in Oslo sometimes and then we can hang out.
We went to Playas del Coco and had a great lunch. I had a Palmito Salad and Papaya en leche and the others had Fish thats the places specialty. We also had patacones con frijoles molidos.

condopiscina.jpgAs we arrived Playa Hermosa we entered the Condovac la costa resort to park our car. Condovac is a great hotel with small condos in the hillside fronting the beach. We had to register and get small bracelets before entering the area. It is a gorgeous place wit lots of great swimmingpools, restaurant and a bar at the swimmingpool area. We got some water and icecream before descending to the beach.

When we got down to the beach we were welcomed by the hotel employers with nice smiles and helpful manners as they directed us to where we could stay and what kind of water sports we could use while at the area. We went over to a place in the shadow. Hehe. Ticos and Latinos dont generally like to expose their bodies too much to the sun. Its ok as long as I get to stay in the sun. I went straight for the water and the lifty samba tones coming from the speakers made it all great. I was soon approached by 2 local dudes that wanted my attention and started chatting. Both were approaching a bit too much and I tried keeping at least a minimum of a distance but soon the youngest of them found fresher meet to check up on. The other disappeared when Marcos and Jason came out for a swim and joined me.

hermosa.jpgJason and Liseth, Marcos and I soon decided to go kayaking and we hired 2 kayaks and left poor Ana to look after the stuff. Kayaking was great. We were not coordinated at all so we went in every direction we were not supposed to go in. hehe.

We managed to stear the kayak after a while and got out to the marina where all the yachts were. Then we hooked up the 2 kayaks together and Jason dived into the water before we went to a nearby beach and looked for shells and had a swim before we started our way back. We had only hired the kayaks for 1 hour and we arrived missing 2 minutes to the hours and that with none of us wearing a watch.
Ana had missed us a lot. She wanted to go for a swim so we went into the water and had some great laughs at a group of boys that were trying to make formations climbing on top of eachother. Some of the guys were bad boys and instead of climbing ontop of the shoulders to their mates they dragged their shorts down. That was the good laughs we had. And that they kept on falling down before done. hehe.

We had to leave around 4:45 because Liseth had a bus tiquet to San Jose with el Pulmitan at 6pm and It took us a while to drive back. She did get the bus and had time to shower off the salt water and pack her stuff as well. After we had left Ana at her place and Liseth at the bus station Marcos, Jason and I decided to go to Las fiestas. I just got home to get a short shower before we went down there. Marcos and Jason picked me up and as we were heading out Federico and Yehudy came home and I just got to say good bye to Yehudy that is gonna leave to San Jose tomorrow at 4am.

We cirkled around the Fiesta area for some time and listened to the rap concert by Tapon, a local group from San Jose. Not exactly something to yell out of exitement for. Really bad is the clue.

We also entered a couple of the party tents and had a couple of beers and danced a bit. I even danced with Jasons dad and got some new friends at the bar. I also ran into a couple of Federicos best friends; Veronica and Diana out with their friends. We ended up at the Bulls Ring watching the young guys and the drunks running around in the Bulls Ring to avoid the Bulls. The entrance was 2000 Colones (about 4$). At any time outside the arena there was 5-6 ambulances just in case any of the bulls hurt any of the dudes in the ring. Sponsors were giving out a lot of stuff for free to the Bullfighters like red t-shirts, coca cola glass coolers etc.
A couple of dudes were taken away in an ambulance because they were hurt. Hope nothing bads up. The guys took me home around midnight and I fell asleep immediately.

Fiestas en Liberia !!! Cool !!!

sunny.gifBeautiful sunny weather and +32C. Fantastic blue sky and no clouds. Mild breeze. Even I am getting jealous of these weather reports. Especially since I am just gonna have this kind of weather for another 3 days.

This morning I woke up and I felt angry. Irene from Rex Cargo was still not able to be located and I feel the urge to send my stuff. Oh well. I guess I will have to continue calling here until I woke up this morning stressed and angry and hitting the repeat button on the phone trying to call Rex Cargo to be able to find out when I can send my stuff off to Norway. I dont have many days left before I leave and I need to get this out of the world.

Federico and Yehudy wanted to go to the beach and they wanted me to go but I could not leave Liberia without having at least talked to Irene so I decided to stay home.
I got through to Irene and she promised to stop by to make an inventory list of my luggage. I spent a couple of hours packing and organizing everything that was going into handluggage/suitcase luggage/cargo luggage. With all flight regulations that one cannot have liquids in the hand luggage, not send food in the cargo etc. and planning all heavy stuff that can go in suitcases and what can go in hand luggage. I spent a couple of hours on that. hehe..

Irene didnt show up so I went downtown and as I was about to arrive to Cibermania Irene called and said she had tried calling me several times and knowing how ICE cell phone system works it never entered my phone. Well. At least I got a hold of her and Im sending her the inventory list instead of her coming over to mine.
That way she can check it tonight and we made an appointment for 8am on monday at the airport offices they have.

As I finished up at Cibermania I went to Ana and we went for lunch. They closed down the shop and we went to the italian restaurant in front of Jauja restuarant to have some pasta food. We both had pasta with salmon and sauce. It was delicious. During these months I am really glad to have earned her friendship. After lunch we walked up towards the park before splitting but we made plans on going to las fiestas around 6pm.

I went home to continue on my packing and make the list of what I had inside the boxes.
At 5:30 I went to Cibermania and sent the list to Irene at Rex Cargo so that she can start the paperwork for my luggage. That will be wonderful to get off my mind.

At 6pm I met Ana and we went down to the Fiestas Civicas area. We walked around looking at the artisan products for a while before going to the bullfights areas. And that was insanely cool. A lot of stupid drunk dudes. Maybe as many as 150 dudes were inside the ring when they let the bull out and they started running around like ants hehe.. It was cool. I was a bit frightening too.
There were some of the encounters that looked BAD. One dude got thrown up in the air several times and stamped on. ouf hehe… But they are all volunteers and I guess they have been used to this stuff since they were small kids. There are also some dudes that are professional that holds the red bullfighting carpets to attract the attention of the bull in case some of the local heroes has too close encounters with the bull and are in any kind of danger.

selegna2.jpgFrom the bullfighting we headed up towards downtown and we passed on Bar Selegna. They have a fantastic ranch built outside the bar with possibility to tie up the horses and party on from the horses back. That looked awesome !

We watched a lunar eclipse as we walked towards the park and restaurant las Tinajas where we found Mami, Papi, Yehudy and My brother Federico with some dudes from San Jose. We stopped and had a drink with them before Ana left to meet a couple of friends that were gonna stay over at her place. As they were installed she got back and we continued our nightlife. There was a concert in the park with the group Santa Esperanza. It was a great concert and I got their CD as well. The evening was rounded up by a huge amount of fireworks.

I got home around 11pm and talked with Mami before I went to bed tired but content. She told me about a couple of rumors about the barbequed meet that is sold on every corner. GOOD thing I never tasted all that. Because they had found 50 dog corpses and tested positve on dog meet in some of the grills. Gross.

Bad luck and self pity day

sunny.gifThis morning as I looked out we had a marvelous sunshine, +33C and a mild.breeze. Some smaller clouds covering the mountains in the east but apart from that LOVELY ! Nothing like Liberia !

The day started off quite good. I tried calling Irene at Rex Cargo several times but no lifesign and cell phone was not on. I got through to San Jose office where they told me Irene was not gonna come in till late night and I got her cell phone number and left a message.
I washed all my clothes and shoes before I took off to Cibermania to check on e-mails and stayed there for a while. As I was finishing up and heading towards the park I got distracted by one of the taxis trying to get mye attention and I fell straight into the street. Haha. That must have been quite a vision for the people that saw it. It didnt hurt much at first but I got some good scratches. ouf. I headed down to Ana and Allans nail/hairdresser place and she helped me clean up the wounds. I was even bleeding from several places on the knee and my toes. Well. Those things happen sometimes. Just glad it was nothing worse than that.

I had planned to go get my ancle tatto fixed (since every color tattoo has to be redone at least once before it is perfect) but after the fall I really was in no mood to do anything like that. I stopped at Las Tinajas for a while before I went home. Of course I had the great and overpowering luck of nobody being home and I had no keys. No one answared the phone either and then I decided I was in no mood of going back to the city to find my family and I decided to contact Dona Teresa that lives next door. She is actually the one that sold us our house. She let me in and I watched the Telenovela with her and her kids (Well, not kids exactly – they were both way older than me) until Papi got home and I could go home. Papi was a bit disturbed that I got in from the inside and not from the outside but relaxed as I told him I had stayed with Dona Teresa while waiting for him.

I went to my room and I was kind of tired and upset. Too many things has happened these last weeks, or may I say months. It has been wonderful but I do notice that I get tired and there are so many amazing impressions and I seriously dont wanna go home. I miss this place already. Its gonna be strange to be all by myself again and not live with a family and be companied all the time. I was also kinda shook up by the fall I had earlier today.
As mami and the others got home they wondered why I had not come down to meet them and see the biggest horse parade of the civic parties but when I explained what had happened she understood very well.

I got a couple of fare well gifts. Some smaller stuff she had sent me with Dona Consuelo when she was in Norway last year. She did not find the stuff in her suitcase back then and finally they had all found it and I got it. I did get to bed early today after having a calming chat with Mami.

Relax and packing

sunny.gifBeautiful sunny weather again. Hehehe. Only +32C. Oh my oh my. Wonderful climate. I like it. I think I must come and live in Liberia at one point of my life.

I woke up at 7am and I was alone in the house. Oh well. Maybe not alone. Mami, Papi and Federico wasn’t there but the 5 workers in the garden were all there. They hammered, fixed and worked on the new room mami and papi wants. I felt like a zombie and decided to get back to bed to continue my sleeping. Next time I woke up I felt better and I peeled papaya and cantaloup melon for breakfast. I also made fresco (fresh made juice from fruitjuice, water and sugar) for the workers and made sure they had enough to drink as they had to be working outside in the sun and I was sweating inside.
I spent the day packing and arranging what to send to Norway in boxes, what to have in the suitcases and what to leave. I also went a couple of hours downtown to update my web pages, e-mail friends and chat before I went home to make cookies and dinner to mami and papi got back home.

tope.jpgMami and papi was back at 4:30 and we had dinner at 5 before heading down to the park to watch – El tope de los ninos – the kids horseparade. Jorge, Roxana and Natasha picked us up and 3 of Jorges kids was in the parade on their own horses.

After the parade we went to the park in front of the post office and stayed there to wait for the kids to arrive having a few drinks while waiting. It was so much dust in the air that when I tried taking pictures with a flash it looked like it was snowing or raining because the flash reflected in the dust.
We were all tired, Mami from the long trip, Federico was sick and I did not feel too good either but we hung in there and Jorge and Roxana took us home around 10. Natasha borrowed my camera and took a lot of pictures of everyone and I even got some good shots of Roxana, Jorge and baby Luis Andres.

Playa Nacazcol and Concert in the Park

sunny.gifWere back to sunny world again. +33C and that wonderful dry weather. No clouds. I love this place. God I wish I could stay here forever.

After my long trip yesterday I was exhausted and I slept in. I did not wake up until 10am. Havent slept that long in months. I soon headed downtown and stopped by Salon Allan to say hi to Ana. It was amazingly hot today and I realized I was not too happy about walking around too much. At least Ana and Allan had aircondition hehe.
I also had a stop at the local internet cafe in front of the park Cibermania to check on e-mails and I was very happy when Irene from Rex Cargo had written me. I had not been able to locate her because she was out of the country this week. Great. I need to send my stuff but at least I will contact her on friday so that we can plan how to do with the stuff I am sending. That relieves a lot of worries.

I headed home and got ready for the beach. I packed bikini, towel and cookies and headed for Angelicas house. We picked up Rocio and filled the car with gas, picked up fruit and drinks before we headed towards the 4 seasons resort where we parked our car.

Since we are not allowed to enter the 4 seasons resort in our own cars unless we are guests at the resort they have a shuttle service that you can take to go to the beaches of the area. This is also because the beaches is located too long away to be in a walking distance from the parking lot and the hotel area.
As we arrived to the beautiful beach area we had to walk down a wooden path and we heard howler monkeys on our way towards the clearing.
The beach was great with white sand and clear water over the white sand. Since it is wednesday it is hardly any people at all. Mostly tourists. We had to try out the water pretty soon and it is so delicious. A couple located close to us had found two dead fishes in the water that they threw away. A good thing with this beach is that 4 seasons has a lot of garbage bins placed all over and it is actually kept clean. Many Ticos (and tourists) are great pollutioners and leaves their garbage wherever they can seem to want to leave it. This beach is wonderfully clean and I like it a lot.

buried.jpgTo truly enjoy the day we tanned, swam and got buried in the warm sand to leave all worries behind. I cant have been much worried because I quickly fell asleep and when I woke up it was time to head out in the water to get cleaned up and welcome happiness and joy into our lifes :) Life is GOOD !
With the sunset we left the beach to go home but we got some great photos of the 4 season area first. It is wonderful but so expensive. It is about a 100$ just to dine there. This Four Seasons hotel is the only one located in central america though and it is a great place for the locals to work since they pay well.

Concert in the Park
We got back to Liberia just before 6:30 and we were all in a hurry to meet up in the park again since we all wanted to see the concert with Voces ancestrales and Gaviota.
Voces ancestrals means ancient voices and it is a University drama group that focuses on making plays to show the ancient cultures of the local area. Guanacaste used to have a many indians tribes and the drama group showed us a great performance with the history of our ancestors interpreted with the eyes of the youth. It was a great show and they had great music to accompany it.
After Voces ancestrales we went to Las Tinajas with Angelicas mom, Auxiliadora, and a couple of other friends of A (Ivannia and Alicia). Service was a little slow today since it was packed with people and we missed the first part of the Gaviota (costa rican group) concert. Though, missed it is maybe an exageration since we could see the scene from the restaurant since Tinajas is located just in front of the park where the concert was held. I also ran into Karina Alejandra and her mom and some of their friends. It was great to see them again. The concert was great and the park was packed with people.

I got home around 10 because I suddenly remembered I did not have a key to the new house and mami was going to bed early to go to San Jose.

She and Papi are going to pick up their new passports so they can go to Guatemala on the 6th. Auch. I had to wake them up.

Liberia – Fortuna de San Carlos – Liberia

cloudy.gifWeather today has been a bit varied since I have been to several different regions of CR. Liberia had the same wonderful sunny weather as previous days. +33C and no clouds. Although in Fortuna the weather was cloudy and it even rained a few drops. Throughout the day the weater cleaned up though.

I got up at 4am this morning to get the bus at 5 to Puntarenas. As I walked down towards the bus station I enjoyed the quiet dark morning before I reached the bus station where I got a sandwich and something to drink before hopping on the bus. It was early and I thought; GOD i just hope nothing happens with this bus so that we dont miss the bus from Canas to Tilaran.
And what happens? OH Yes. Dont you doubt it. One of the tires went flat !
We all had to deboard the bus and stress rushed towards me since I knew we had to get the bus from Canas to Tilaran. The fact that I did not know if the bus from Tilaran to Fortuna leaves from Tilaran at 7 or at 8. I needed to get the bus from Canas at 6am. I just had to.
I found this other lady from the bus and we hopped on the first bus that passed from Liberia to Canas. In Canas we found out that the bus just left so the lady and I took the first cab we found and payed him to press his foot on the speeder.

Finally after about 15 minutes in the cab we reached the bus and I was happy. All was good again.
I could not help but thinking that it could be that I wasnt supposed to do this trip today. No matter what I was going to Fortuna ! I had to do it today cause it was my last possibility.
I just had my mind on getting JorunnS a gift I hope is good for her.

The good thing about getting to Tilaran at 6:45am was that I realized that one of the 2 buses that goes to Tilaran leaves at 7am and the other bus leaves until 12:30. It does not leave at 8 like some dude told me in Liberia. Another proof that one should not always believe anything that a common Tico tells you. hehe. Ticos does not like to be wrong and will not admit that they dont know things.

Finally we did get that bus at 7 and was so happy to get the bus I had planned for. I sat down with the lady I had gotten to know on the trip to Tilaran. She quickly dug up her Bible from her bag and started studying it. I dont normally sleep when travelling alone, but I seriously felt confident that she was gonna watch out for me. An hour and a half into our trip we had a stop and some people went off. I jumped on the opportunity to get a double seat just for ME. That felt good considering the seats of the buses always are too short for my legs.

We arrived Fortuna at 10am and I walked around a bit before I got my return ticket to Liberia. I could not wait for the regular bus to go at 5:30pm so I headed for the greyline company like I did last time I was in Fortuna. The greyline bus is scheduled for 1pm so at least that one will be back in Liberia about the same time the regular bus leaves Fortuna.
Then I took a cab up to Hotel Montana de Fuego where the souvenir shop I had been searching all day was located. OK it was not at Montana de Fuego but on the other side of the road. I went in there and looked through the souvenirs to see if I found a suitable gift for my friend. I will not say here what I ended up with since it is supposed to be a surprise for someone.

After choosing the gifts I went over the streets and had lunch at Acuarela restaurant. I had a wonderful tropical chicken with a mango / pineapple / passionfruit /peach sauce topped with strawberries, peaches and avocado. It was served with rice and beans and it tasted delicious !!!
I had an amazing view towards the Arenal volcano and the better thing about it all was that the clouds lifted up and the view towards the volcano was amazing. The sound of Lava rocks falling down the mountain hills, the damp from the hot rocks as they cool down towards the mountain. Those are views to remember. The amazement I feel as I look towards one of natures true wonders.

coatis.jpgThe greyline bus picked me up at the hotel and I was soooo tired I almost fell asleep waiting for it. Though I managed to wait until I was on the bus. I fell asleep almost immediately but the bus driver woke me up to show us all a coati family along the road. They are so used to tourists and beeing fed by people that they put on a show. They are amazing and they make strange sounds. They almost sound like some strange birds. I had bananas that I fed them with and they were almost fighting about the food. Cool animals.

After getting back on the bus I slept for another hour and a half. We had to make a bus change and after the change I spent the rest of the time talking to Klemens from switzerland. He was an AFS student in the US 04/05 and has been in CR 3 months like me. We had a nice chat and I hopped off the bus in Liberia while he continued to Tamarindo.

As I arrived Liberia I stopped at the internet cafe before going home. I didnt stay long though. I was dead tired and went home to sit on my bed for an hour or two before I finally went to bed.