Friday, December 25, 2009

Fever Navidad

leaving Dominical, Costa Rica

on the mountain pass from San Jose to Dominical, Costa Rica

leaving San Jose, Costa Rica

Dec.26, 2009

We are now in Panama.
We spent Christmas in a little surfer town in Costa Rica with little or no sign that Christmas was even a celebrated holiday. We arrived in Dominical on Dec. 22. Greg had noticed in San Jose that he was feeling achy, his senses were correct and he came down with a high grade fever. Greg degraded through his heirarchy of personalities which stalemated at meager requests in a whiny voice. Greg spent all of Christmas cooped up in the shaded fan cooled sancuary provided by the hotel room. He emerged only early in the morning and late in the evening when there was no sun. Due to this behavior he earned the knickname "Zee Cockroach" from our Dutch and German friends. Greg found this to be quite amusing, knowing this was true, that his life was reduced to being a "cockroach" in a tropical paradise. It took two days for the fever to break with the help of tylenol. The minute he was feeling well I drug him out to a childrens Christmas play that I had seen advertised around town. The play was short and morphed into a religious sermon about the true meaning of Christmas. We even got a free spaghetti dinner and a piece of cake to celebrate Jesus's birthday.
On Christmas day Greg spent the entire day in bed again. In spight of this I spent Christmas day relaxing on the beach under a palm tree and swimming in the surf of the Pacific ocean. I found a perfect sand dollar and presented it to my sick little Greg as his Christmas gift.
Greg finally felt well enough to get out of bed today so we packed up and headed towards the Panama border.
Apparently EVERYBODY wanted to go to Panama on Boxing Day and we were the last ones to arrive. Greg stood in a line for 3 1/2 hours while a paper handler ran to various windows getting the documents stamped. Periodically Greg had to get out line to run over to a window in order to proove his identity to the agent filling out his required documents. The line he was standing in was to Exit Panama, not Enter. This line was substantially shorter than the Enter line which had approximately 300 people standing in it. A bribe was paid to the Customs Offical to stamp our passports and the man behind the window happily obliged. In all he had to go to seven different windows and wait in seven different lines. We made it through the border in 3 1/2 hours.

While Greg was getting our business done I was patiently waiting by the bike.

We finally pulled out of the border at 3:30 and headed towards Boquete, a small town in the mountains that Hoite and Sandra had told us about. As we accended into the mountains the temperature dropped at least 10 degrees, I actually had to wear my fleecy once the sun went down! We easily found a hostel, the nicest hostel we've ever seen. Greg spent the last minutes of daylight tinkering with the bike, tightening the rear shock and adjusting the chain tension since we've added about 50 pounds to our weight with our two new tires tied on the back. We were starving by the time 6:30 rolled around so we walked across the street to the closest restaurant. What a wonderful surprise! It had 3 things on the menu, steak, chicken, and a burger. We both ordered the steak, and it was so good that Greg rated it "almost as good as a Fitz steak". That's pretty darn good.

We left the restaurant around 9:30 and wandered into the street. Since we had forgotten to pick up a bottle of water before dinner, we headed up the street in search of a corner store. Instead we found a Christmas Parade! Children were running around, dogs were dressed in Santa outfits, bands were marching and playing Christmas songs, floats with loud Latino music were going by with dancers dancing and candy flying out into the crowd. I thought to myself, what a great time for the Santa Parade, the day after Christmas when he'd actually have the time to make an appearance himself instead of sending one of his imposters out in his place. Christmas was in the air.



  1. Poor Greg, I hope he is feeling better, zee cockcroach, too funny, anyway hope you had a good boxing day.

  2. Just a little note to tell you that I'm loving reading your stories and ooohing over your photos from this trip. Great job with the blog, keep it up! And safe biking!

  3. Nice hear from you guys again....I was starting to worry! Glad to hear "zee cockroach" is feeling better! Have a drink on the beach for all of suckers stuck here during the holiday!