Well, we have safely made it to Costa Rica. We arrived here on July 11th, and it has taken a few days to get the chance to update you all. Our friend, partner, and now family member Rob decided to write a running diary of the events of the day we left. I have copied his diary from his blog and I am going to add to it our thouhgts/feelings/actions. Rob’s commentary is in blue, mine is in red. Here goes: July 11th, 2012…
12:30 am: Even though we went to bed early, I have still not been able to fall asleep. I have looked at the clock so many times and sighed to myself…”only 30 minutes have passed…ugh! “I am getting nowhere and keeping Nick awake…so I move to another bedroom and hope to catch maybe a few hours of sleep. Tons of things are rolling through my mind: How will the animals do tomorrow? Will we miss our plane? How will the flights be? What is the first thing we need to do when we get there? And so the night goes…
2:40 am: Kenetha (Nick’s mom) comes to wake us up (our alarm was set for 3:00)
3:15 am: We start driving with all of our luggage, Tiger (cat) and Snickers (dog) to the airport.
4:50 am: We arrive at the airport and start putting Snickers and Tiger in their cages…Tiger goes in fine (he likes to sleep in his cage as a ‘house’), but Snickers on the other hand…we had to force him in…I felt so bad L
5:03 am: (Rob) Rolling my suitcase through the doors of Myrtle Beach International Airport as I see Nick and Liz with their respective Moms and Dads in tow and a mountain of luggage in front of the Delta counter. Our bill of laden: Half a workshop’s worth of tools, chainsaw, pots & pans, fishing tackle, sunblock, pictures of family and friends, my Xbox (hey, it streams Netflix and plays DVD’s), cameras, baseball glove, and whatever clothing we could fit in the cracks.
5:27 am. (Rob) First luggage snafu: There’s a disagreement over the interpretation of Delta’s overweight/multiple checked bag policy. Nick’s argument has laid waste to 2 separate counter agents, their supervisor, and he’s now threatening to get Delta headquarters on the phone. I’m glad he’s on my side.
5:41 am. (Rob) 3 people, a dog, and a cat, successfully through security. (Liz) We had to take the animals out of their cages and walk through the scanner with them in our hands…so I, again, had to force Snickers back in his cage. (Rob) I’m suddenly feeling halfway home. Give my family a final wave from the other side, and head for the escalator. Man that was tough.
6:30 am: (Liz) I slipped Snickers a sedative to help calm his nerves, and then a woman from Delta approached Nick and I and asked if we would like to move up to economy seats (like that is a question). Apparently someone had thrown up in our seat. Hey maybe this day isn’t gonna be so bad after all…too bad it wasn’t our long flight.
8:40 am. (Rob) We’ve touched down in Atlanta and I’m eating the last American breakfast I’ll have for a while. It’s a sausage, egg, and cheese bagel from McDonalds. What else. (Liz) I had a bacon egg and cheese biscuit and Nick had a stinky steak egg and cheese bagel…and score, we got a free hashbrown!
9:15 am. (Rob) Nick suggests we shave our hair into Euro Mullets when we land. I see lots of opportunities for hair/beard creativity over the next year.
10:00 am. (Rob) And we’re in the air. Time to make up… some.. shut.. zzzzzz (Liz) Yes, Rob was out before we even took off! I got a nap in, but it did not make up for the lack of sleep the past 2 weeks. Nick played Angry Birds pretty much the whole time since our TVs didn’t work…one more thing to complain to Delta about.
12:50 pm.(Rob) We’ve made it through customs without much trouble other than the Disney-esque line for our entry visas. Nick and Liz have been called over for a double check of their animals’ paperwork while I play a game of Tetris with a tiny hand cart and 75 pound suitcases. They’re falling, passers-by are unsympathetic. (Liz) This was pretty funny…sorry Rob haha!
2:24 pm. (Rob) Yeeeeeeww! Costa! We’re here baby! I have a good feeling.
3:00 pm. (Rob) The surf is mixed up because of the afternoon on-shore winds and there’s a storm brewing, so we’re unpacking and heading to the supermercado for some necessities. I’m still being surprised by the things that I did and didn’t remember to pack so I just opt for a couple big bottles of Imperial. We bring home some take out from a small Tico buffet which ends up serving as our dinner because (SPOILER ALERT) we’re exhausted and pass out shortly after sunset.
~July 12th~ We spent all day riding around San Jose looking for a car. We finally found one. A 1997 Hyundai Galloper 4 door diesel. The guy said he will fix the a/c, clutch and fog light that is out for free, but it may take a few hours...so we go out and about waiting for his call. On our outing we go to Walmart...it is very different here!
1. the parking lot is almost empty
2. it is 2 stories
3. things are way more expensive that the Walmarts in America, for example ONE beanbag chair is $70!!!
Finally the mechanic calls us back...it is going to take longer so we will have to come back and get it tomorrow.
It is tomorrow and the car is still not ready...he is on true Tico time...never in a hurry for anything.
Hopefully we will be able to get the car tomorrow and go to the store. We do not have everything we need right now...no shampoo or conditioner for example. I washed my hair with soap tonight and that was a mistake...maybe I should have just left it stinky and oily...it is now so stiff and dry it feels like straw...oh conditioner, I need you soon!
Another obstacle today...I met the washing machine...or what they call a washing machine in Costa Rica. You have to use a water hose to fill it up to wash, drain it, use the water hose to fill it up to rinse, drain it, and then transfer it to a separate spinner. This almost made me cry! How am I going to wash all the sheets and towels for the cabins like that? We started looking on CR Craigslist for automatic washers...again, they are more expensive here. ...Just another expense we had not planned on.
Tomorrows plan: beach for some sun and maybe some surfing for me...since it is small.