Friday, April 17, 2009

Down the Caribbean Coast

Although we got a late start on the holiday weekend, we did finally get out of San Jose.  My idea was to go to Bocas del Toro, Panama.  Since my brother Brrrian was visiting we made a stop in Puerto Viejo on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica #1 to break up the trip, but #2 because I knew that Brrrian would really enjoy it. We have been there several times, it seems like the perfect spot to take visitors, because it is so different than the rest of Costa Rica. We did all the fun stuff, like rent bikes, eat seafood, drink organic coffee and eat homemade ice cream, salsa dance at Maritza, listen to reggae at Johnny's... The difference this time was the sheer amount of people due to Semana Santa (holy week).  My co-worker and fellow Habitat volunteer Bryan wanted to go too.  (Since there were 2 Brrrian's, Bryan picked a new name - it was Esteban...actually we all did- Brrrian became Ceasar, Neto was Bruno and I was Valentina) We piled into Esteban's suv and arrived in a few hours.  Of course we rolled into town with no reservations and the choices of accomodations were slim. We ended up at Coco Congo across from Playa Negra  because we really didn't have a choice.  (skip this place if at all possible) Here Esteban sits on the bed, which is separated from the bathroom by a thin piece of plywood... (I would dare to call Esteban  "high maintenance" and,  he didn't last the night here)  What's important to me luckily, is not the room that I sleep, but what is on the other side of that door: 
I could sleep almost anywhere to wake up to this.  Here are some of my favorite pics:  
Brrrian jamming with Paul,  the owner of Caribbeans, a free trade organic coffee shop.  (click here to see what he was singing)   We wanted to take Brrrian to Maxi's in Manzanillo, a 45 min bike ride from Puerto Viejo
It is the best seafood/ribs place on the beach.  This was the 3rd time we had been there. De-lish and under $10!  
Manzanillo National Park is just a bit further down the road, and we had never been there, so we planned walk the trails after lunch.  It was so beautiful, I loved the rock  formations in the water.
Brrrian was amazed at the foliage walking through the jungle and took many great shots with his new camera, a Canon XT which is very similar to mine. (all these pics are a mix of his and mine) He gave me some great tips.
I was glad when we spotted the sloth so Brrrian could see some of the wildlife (hanging at the top..see it?) 
Brrrian brought a gnome traveling from San Francisco and is now  traveling the world.

Oh! and I don't want to forget the most enlightening part of PV.....we met the lead singer of the 80's band Twisted Sister.  He is now living in Costa Rica, hanging out at Caribbeans Coffee to tell its patrons about the poison the us government is spraying on us from airplanes to kill of 95% of the population. "Do you know the poison that you are breathing everyday, and that its going to kill you?"  This was his opening line and I had to reply by saying "Do you know how ridiculous you sound saying that while you are smoking a cigarette?"  Anyway, bottom line is that  he wants people to check out (im not going to link to it)  and spread the word, he made a real impact on us - we were talking about him all week.  Mission accomplished! 

Next stop Bocas del Toro, Panama.  To be continued.... 


  1. Dee Snyder????? WOW! Nice pics too!

    FYI, my post was about how I went to see the boy last night. I feel really conflicted about everything, per usual.

  2. The government's trying to poison us? What do they wanna do with my life? I'm not gonna to take it. No! I'm not gonna take it.

  3. the gnomes name is gnorman. im glad he gets to see the world.


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