not all who wander are lost.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Two Thumbs to Dominical

Oh me, oh my. The adventures we've had.

First of all, I realize that I keep talking about Semana Santa...and you probably have no idea what the hell Semana Santa is:

Holy Week in Christianity is the last week of Lent and the week before Easter. It includes the religious holidays of Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday (Holy Thursday) and Good Friday, and lasts from Palm Sunday (or in the Eastern, Lazarus Saturday) until but not including Easter Sunday, as Easter Sunday is the first day of the new season of The Great Fifty Days. It commemorates the last week of the earthly life of Jesus Christ before his crucifixion on Good Friday and his resurrection on Easter Sunday.

Well, for those who live in Costa Rica at the beach it's absolute hell. Tico's fill the town with their coolers and tents and food and garbage. They shower in the well as swim in it, shower in it, and god knows what else. It's like the 4th of July in Ocean City...but on crack. JamieD and I decided to escape the chaos and head for Dominical for a few days - a town that is usually busier than Esterillos, but for this Tico holiday it would be less crowded and just full of the normal flow of tourists.

The adventure begins...
We get out of the water with 20minutes to get rinsed off, changed, boards put away and down to the bus stop...which is outside of town. Bah. We are hauling ass down the hot blacktop, sun beating down on us -- I'm carrying a backpack and a bag full of groceries: bottle of red wine, pineapple, 5 mangoes, bag of linguini, pasta sauce, dried bananas and raisins, and tortillas. The essentials. Jamie is making me laugh, so I have to keep stopping to cross my legs so I don't pee my pants...then I need a second to regain composure, catch my breath, and catch up. We get to the bus stop and we wait. And wait. Hundreds of cars pass us, all beeping their horns - which isn't too unusual cause we are two gringas standing on the side of the road. It's actually unusual if they don't honk. Little do we know that they are all beeping and laughing. Why are they laughing, you ask...because it's Good Friday, and there aren't any buses that run on Good Friday. Dumb gringas. We were already completely set on heading to Dominical, so we decide that we are going to have to thumb it there. As soon as the thought popped into our minds a man stopped his car and asked where we were going. A tico, mid-40's, glasses...and sized so that Jamie and I could both kick his ass if he tried any shit. With both of our assessments we glanced at eachother, smiled, and hopped in the car. Martin didn't speak any English, so him and I chatted in Spanish. We all stopped for breakfast, we picked up the tab, and then within an hour we were hopping out of the car in Dominical, waving goodbye and thanks. First stop was Soda Nanyoa, clearly, my favorite place in Dominical and where I eat all of my meals. Gave hugs and kisses to the whole family that owns/operates it and sipped on some of their delicious coffee. After cafe Jam and I strolled into my friend Taylors' bar, Que Nivel. All rooms were rented in town but one of her employees was away on a surf trip so she put us in his room. She assured us that he wouldn't mind, and she apologized profusely for how dirty it was. Boys....ew. Clean your room. Details aside, we were thankful for a {free} place to stay. We cruised around town and reconnected with all of my old but dear friends. It was GREAT to see everyone's familiar faces and we made plans for the next few days. Took a dip in the river with Taylor and Brittany {britt works with Taylor at the bar, and is originally from margate. we've known eachother for several years now...}, played with the dogs, and enjoyed the nice cool water. Because it was Good Friday, no alcohol was to be served until midnight...good thing we brought that bottle of red wine! We made some makeshift Sangria {club soda, Te Frio fruta mixtas, and red wine} and brought it down to the beach for sunset in a water bottle along with plastic cups. Had some dinner at Que Nivel, hung out with friends, and then celebrated the stroke of midnight like it was New Years Eve...which a shot of tequila! Went out to a local disco later for some dancing and then to bed.

Next morning. Saturday. Day before Easter. Buses are now running, alcohol is being served, and Jam and I are a bit hungover. We have some coffee, laugh, and then go for a refreshing swim. We swim and swim and swim and smile. The simple things. So wonderful. Head back to Nanyoa for cup of coffee #2 along with Gallo Pinto and some fried plantains. Yum. My friend Mike owns the dive shop in town, Costa Rica Dive and Surf. He took a half day from work and so did Taylor, so we all headed up to Gil's house. Gil is from North Carolina, a dive instructor working for Mikey. He has one day off, and we totally invaded his peaceful home atop one of the highest mountains around Dominical. In our truck was Mike, his girlfriend Alicia, Taylor, Brittany, Me and 3 dogs: Mickey a huge rottweiler, Lulu another big rotty, and then little miniature Mowgli. Unexpected visitors, The Goodmans, showed up too. The parents, their 3 insane boys until 12 years old, and one of the boys friends. The pool was mayhem and the dogs were running around like lunatics - so Taylor and I took refuge in the kitchen and started cooking. After the Goodman army rolled out everyone relaxed and enjoyed the silence. We all vowed not to have children for a long, long time. We ate and chatted and laughed, a lot. Headed back down the mountain and into town and got ready for ROCA VERDE!!! The Saturday night favorite. It would be especially fun tonight because everyone was at the beach for Semana Santa. Well, when we got back to the bar there was a guy who approached Taylor with a confused and somewhat frustrated look on her face. It was Frederico, her employee that had been away on a surf trip. He came home a few days early....and his room was filled with bathingsuits, towels and backpacks. Ha. We all laughed off the situation and moved our stuff up into Taylors room - even though he insisted we stay in his bed. Ha. Right... We pregamed at Taylors, Que Nivel, with shots of tequila. It went like this: glass of water, shot of tequila alongside a shot of orange juice. This process happened about 5 times and then we were out the door, into a cab, and on our way for the DISCO. Everyone posted up at the bar but Jamie and I beelined for the dance floor. We didn't leave the floor for 3 hours, except for the occasional bathroom break. At 3am when we hopped a cab home we both looked like we had just gotten out of a swimming pool. Completely saturated with sweat. Shit eating grins from ear to ear. We instantly went to sleep, and we slept hard. Woke up the next morning: coffee @ Nanyoas, long swim in the ocean, back to Nanyoas for food. Taylor had business to take care of at the bar, but Jamie and I decided to spend easter with Mike and his girlfriend, so we hitchhiked up to their great cabina in the hills headed to San Isidro. We were tired and hungover, but Mikey mentioned WATERFALL and we both perked up. A decent, somewhat scary adventure and then we arrived. The most beautiful views I've ever seen in Costa Rica, and I forgot my g'damn camera! shit shit shit! Well, we were at the TOP of the Nauyaca waterfall...a waterfall I have frequented several times on horse tours, but we came in from the opposite side - and from a few hundred feet above. We trekked down the side of the mountain to the base of the smaller waterfall and swam in the refreshing, cold water. Left the waterfall and had some dinner at a great Mirador further up the mountain. I was so cold that I was craving a sweater. What a good day. What good people. I love Costa Rica.

Spent the night @ Que Nivel and hopped the 5:45am bus back to Oeste this morning. Hung around the house, napped, putzed and cleaned. Only a few days left in paradise, so I'm soaking it all up. Pura Vida.

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