Day 2

Trip Start Jan 14, 2013
Trip End Apr 11, 2013

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Where I stayed
Barcelo San Jose
Read my review - 5/5 stars

Flag of Costa Rica  , Province of San Jose,
Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Today is the first of an 88 day adventure in Costa Rica. Denver made it easy to say adios as the temperatures were hovering around the zero marker the evening we departed.  

We have been met with exceptionally warm hospitality and friendliness.  From the airport staff, to the shuttle driver, to the rental car agent, everybody has been gracious and helpful.  We arrived at the hotel at 8:30 AM after an arduous red eye flight.  While the normal check in time is not until 2 PM, the front desk clerk (a newly minted father himself) took pity on us, and arranged for a much earlier check in time. 

Vivian keeps insisting we are not really in Costa Rica.  It started in the airport when we weren't greeted by a troop of monkeys.  At least 5 times today she has asked when we are going to the "real" Costa Rica.  It has lead to me to wonder if the children of foreigners visiting the United States are met with similar disappointment.  That America isn’t in fact one big Hollywood set full of beautiful people living in mansions.  We tried explaining to her that Costa Rica has many elements, the cities, the beaches, the rainforests, and the mountains.  It took three visits to the pool seems to have helped ease her disappointment. 

The driving is nuts.  I was white-knuckled and in a sweat the whole time I drove in San Jose.  Buses stop on the highways, motorists cut each other off senselessly, and motorcyclists ignore lane markings zipping between cars (and although motorcyclists generally wear bright reflective vests it seems little insurance against unpredictable motorists who refuse to use turn signals).  Cars either go way too fast, or ridiculously slow.  Fortunately, Paul and I are used to insane drivers after years of living in Boston, and Costa Rican pot holes are only slightly larger than Boston pot holes.   At least during this adventure we are driving an automatic vehicle on the “right side” of the road.

A moment of thanks:  Thanks to the Beskis, our house/pet sitters.  We hope Stanley doesn't drive you insane!  Thanks to Jorge our travel agent-turned-friend--your insight and wisdom has been invaluable in the plotting of this trip.  Thanks to all our family and friends--no doubt you think we are insane, but you've kept a brave face on our behalf.  Without all your love and support, we may not have had the courage to take this plunge.

Finally, a special thanks to Vivian and Ivy.  Your infinite curiosity and boundless energy inspired and enabled us make this trip.  Hopefully one day you’ll read about our families adventures and think, “That was cool” and not, “What were you thinking?”  May you always remain open to the incredible wonders this planet has to offer.  
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My Review Of The Place I Stayed

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