Amazing Race Mal Pais

Trip Start Jan 30, 2007
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Costa Rica  ,
Saturday, April 14, 2007

Hello all,

Sorry family for the delay in the entry again, but it happens.

I left Liberia Tuesday morning and made it to Tamarindo later that afternoon to meet up with Maia. I checked into the same hostel she was staying at but she was nowhere to be found so did my own thing for the first bit and met two american girls who were teachers on spring break. We hung out a bit, watched a sunset and chatted. It was so nice to have contact with travelers again and speak some good ol english. I also sent out an email to my beloved (yours too Michelle) colorado boys (Majagual entry) to see what they were up to, because I knew they were somewhere in Costa Rica. I recieved an email back almost immediately saying they were also in Tamarindo, working as surf instructors and living just up the road. I was so excited!!!

I found Maia the next day in the morning and we hung out and I met some of her friends. I also met up with the boys when they were finished their work day and the 4 of us (there are only 3 remaining now, two have gone home)  headed out to a beach closeby called Langosta and I watched them surf. They told me I was queen for the night and cooked me up dinner, pasta for old times sake. We had great chats and it was just too much fun to be around them again. am anxiously awaiting their arrival up to Canada when plan to work out at Whistler for a season. The following night they taught me how to play Rummi (?), thinking they would win because I was new to the game, but I kicked all their butts by at least 100 points. And I love to win at cards!!

Tamarindo is an ok spot, but I was not as impressed as I was with Nicaragua. It is basically America, expensive stores everywhere, tons of tourists and spring breakers and lame-os to say the least, and just very expensive as a whole. We had a kitchen in the hostel so cooked very cheaply and the boys spoiled me with dinner two nights so it worked out well. The beach was decent but crowded and I missed Nica for a few days. It also has been raining alot as it is rainy season now. It is very muggy while it does rain, but cools the evenings off quite nicely. Nothing dries here at all, everything is always damp. I was ready to be done with Tamarindo by the end of my 3 nights there.

Maia and her two friends Jenna and Kevin were planning to head down here to the beautiful surfers paradise that is Mal Pais Friday morning so I decided to come along. They were planning to take a direct shuttle to MP for a disgusting amount of 35 US$. I am budgeting and just also really cheap so Kevin and I decided we would take the long but much cheaper route instead. Everyone kept telling us how hard it was to get there and how crazy we were for even attempting to do it this way, but we thought hey itll be an adventure. And, I still got the bubble...We looked at it as the Amazing Race Mal Pais.

Kevin and I left early friday morning from Tamarindo at 5:30 am. We took the bus to another place, about 4 hours down the road, and then transfered onto another bus which was pretty much just waiting for us. We took that bus to another town where we had to catch a cab to the ferry terminal, and the nicest Tico lady helped us, walked blocks out of her way and got us a locals price fare for the cab. Im telling you, the bubble never fails!!! We thought we could make the 11am ferry and had about 15 mins to spare so were racing down amazing race style to get there, only to realize it didnt leave until 12:30pm. No worries, we had a very cheap and delicious breakfast, and made that ferry, which only cost 1.10$ and had air conditioning if you can believe it! I forgot what is felt like to have goosebumps, it was great. We then caught another bus on the other side and then caught a cab the rest of the way to Mal Pais with two other American girls and made it there almost 12 hours after we had started. Long day but was actually really fun and smooth sailing and only cost us around 10$. Saved so much cash, I love it!

We are staying at pretty much the best hostel of my life. We have gorgeous rooms, where we are all four staying, hammocks everywhere you look, a giant communal kitchen, with free unlimited pancake breakfast which you cook for yourself. We are a 30 second walk from the beautiful beach and have the jungle all around us. And there is free internet!!! There are tons of cool people staying here and I ran into a couple from Popoyo, again (Dave and Sierra) for the second time since. I think I have a talent for running into pretty much every person I meet while traveling. The only downside is that it is ridiculously hot all day and I have been eaten alive, despite wearing mass amounts of bug spray. Maia counted 17 bug bites on just one side of one leg. I have 4 in a row on the inside, underside of one of my feet!! Its driving me crazy!!!

Life is good here. Kevin leaves on Monday and Maia and Jenna are staying for a week to 10 days. I may feel I need to branch off or may also enjoy the company so am leaving it open. A friend Noah from Popoyo(surprise surprise) emailed me to see where Im at as he just got back into Costa Rica, so we are trying to make plans to meet up soon, and then we may travel around together for a bit. Im back into my social groove so am feeling good!!

Ill be sure to post some pictures of my ridiculously tan self soon!! Miss you all!!!

Love Kirsten
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