Saturday, August 30, 2008

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca - the Caribe de Costa Rica...

Back in good old Costa Rica with the Ticos, casados, sodas and great music! Tab and I headed to the town of Puerto Viejo located on the Southern Caribbean of Costa Rica. We didn't have reservations anywhere and ended up at a small place outside of town. It was OK, but definitely not Aqua Lodge caliber. We chilled out and had dinner and called it a night. The next day, Tab was off to San Jose to catch a flight back to the bay. Poor Tab, she was in for a long bumpy ride back to the airport. That is the one thing I forgot (and quickly remembered) about Costa Rica, the roads are horrible. That morning, I made my way into town and found Cabinas Guanara. The owners are Italian and Paulo kept saying "ciao bella" in Italian - loved it! They gave me a great deal so I stayed for 3 nights!

Puerto Viejo, duhhhude, is the most chill place I have ever been. It's Caribbean flavor, pura vida attitude and no worries lifestyle is just so relaxing! Puerto Viejo is also home of the amazing "Salsa Brava" which is what the biggest breaks in Costa Rica are called. The breaks got their name because of the "sauce" it serves up. These waves put Puerto Viejo on the map for surfers all over the world. There´s also a, shall I say this, big fan base for herbs here. I was at the tour office, booking my tour for the next day and this older, kind of worn gentleman was in the office. He was rather chatty and I guess felt comfortable enough to ask me if I wanted some herb. Now this, within itself, is no big deal. I have been asked this many times here in Costa Rica. It turns out, revealed after he left the office, this guy is Captain Zero. There was a book written about him. In days past, he was a big drug smuggler and surfer here in Central America. He now lives on the beach and just kind of wanders. He is from Southern Marin...LOL here! What does that say...Jackie, Douglas, Ingrid??? Apparently, they were going to make a movie about him and Sean Penn had come down PV to do some research on him. Not sure what happend with the movie deal, something about book and movie rights. Anyway, I was asked by Captain Zero (let´s not have your kids strive to be like this Captain!) if I was interested in some herb! Whadya think about that?

The next day, I went on a snorkel and hiking tour in Cahuita which is a National Reserve about 20 minutes north of Puerto Viejo. On the way there, I met Tyler from NY via London. We hung out for the duration of the day. I just love that British humor - dry and hysterical. We took a boat out to the live coral reef just off the shore of Punta Cahuita. The water was a bit hazy, but we were able to see some pretty cool fish and the coral was amazing. Hiking through the reserve was next on the agenda. Our guide, we think his name was Ludvig - not sure because we couldn´t really understand him, but that´s what we called him, was a young guy from Cahuita. He spoke English but with a rather strong Caribbean accent. He was really knowledgeable about the plants, sea, animals, etc. I was impressed. Tyler and I had dinner and hung out for a while. Nothing like a cold Pina Colada on a warm night!

My last day in PV was spent on Play Cocles. I just chilled, as is the norm here, and watched the surfers do their thing. I found myself SO chill, that I didn´t take many pictures. I couldn´t lift my arms I guess. Tomorrow, off to Tortuguero, the Northern Caribbean of Costa Rica.


Jackie said...

Capt. Zero from Southern Marin, huh? Probabaly means you would've gotten some seriously bona fide bud!

Hope you have another opportunity to check out Rip Jack & hopefully meet Dave. If you think you'll have the chance, let me know when you'll go & I'll contact Dave.

Cara said...

You "watched the surfers do their thing"?? What happened to your new-found surfing skills? Why weren't you out there?