Do you see how easy it was to suddenly bring my ‘Last Month Of My Life’ posts back into the realms of accurate titling? While I was happily parenthesising away and turning even my headlines into the grammatical equivalent of Ulysses – where else have you ever seen a title which contains a dash and TWO sets of brackets? – it turns out I could have just chucked an ‘s’ on at the end of ‘month’ and called it a day. Hindsight’s a bitch, as they say.
Shall I continue chatting about the syntax tree of today’s title, or would you rather I just got on wi- ok, ok! No need to shout, I’m getting to it!
Right, so we’re begrudgingly back in San Jose, and we’re much less begrudgingly staying in dorms at Casa del Parque hostel for $10 pppn. We really enjoyed the atmosphere here, as the guests tend to be calmer and less crazy than in Galileo. The big, bright, open spaces make you want to use the common rooms, the wide selection of coffee table literature is there to excuse you for being too lazy to go out that day, and there is a designated ‘landing time’ (9-10pm) so that those who want to sleep at night, can.
Among the nice people we met was a guy who was headed towards a volunteer job on an organic farm. As my conversations often do, we ended up turning in a linguistic direction and he mentioned that he speaks French. I said that’s great, not enough people take the time to learn a second language and I’m sure it must be tough to learn after toddlerhood when I was first exposed to French.
I asked him his name. He said Duh-nee. I said ‘I’m sorry?’ He repeated, ‘My name’s Denis; I’m Canadian’.
Facepalm. That’s what you get for being a pompous wee bugger. Almost as bad as the time I was working in Julian Graves and those customers couldn’t understand me so I jabbered away in Spanish until I’d completed the transaction and the lady said ‘Ciao, grazie’.
So, anyway. I don’t know why this entry keeps veering back towards linguistics. Maybe because I love linguistics. But seriously, I swear I’ll talk about San Jose now.
Our time in the capital didn’t include any crazy tours, wildlife encounters or much travel, apart from our trip to San Ramon. We’d realised it was going to be pretty much impossible for me to manage all my crap on the public bus on my own, so we took a trip with the suitcase and the vacuum bag and lugged them to MUSADE. Gerardo hopped in the minibus and drove us out to his brother’s house where I would be staying, and I had a chance to meet don Pedro and the two younger kids. Pedro even showed us around the town a little, recommended a place to eat and told me to come by straight after dropping Grant at the airport instead of waiting for the weekend like I’d planned. We left feeling very secure and positive about my stay.
The only other essentials were to buy me a phone and a decent pair of work shoes, and to see the last ever Harry Potter film which was still showing back then. We spent a lot of time at the mall (Grant is actually the best shopping companion I’ve ever known), and we discovered (or rediscovered, in his case) the taco in a bag. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm. Basically, San Jose was time to wind down from all the frantic touring and to just spend some time together, hanging out, before we were torn apart again.
And then we were torn apart again. After a long saga in which basically his airline wanted to switch his layover destination from Miami to Dallas, while he was secretly planning on jumping ship in Miami to join his family who happened to be on holiday there; we finally got the bus out early on Thursday morning, he made it to Miami, and that was that. Juan Santamaria has a passengers-only-inside-the-airport policy which conflicted unfortunately with our usual check-in-then-grab-fast-food-and-wait-for-boarding routine. He just went ahead and I wandered around outside the building for a while before hopping on a bus back to San Jose, collecting my things, rummaging around in the dumpster for my new phone’s PIN number, and moving to San Ramon.
Five months later, I’m preparing for the reverse journey with a similar infusion of excitement and nostalgia. I will miss Costa Rica – my work, my street, my host family, the views from my window… But I’m also just about ready to head home to my mum, my Grant, and my country, where dogs aren’t left to bark all night, my room doesn’t get invaded by ants, and you can flush toilet paper.
Over and out, chiquillos. I’ll be back with San Ramonian things soon.