I was finally feeling hungry the other day so I decided to go down to Playa Negra and visit The Point restaurant, which is an ‘American Sports Bar’. Not what I’m into personally but they allegedly have great burgers and I hadn’t had one since I left Texas. Plus I wanted to be on the beach, near a bar and people just to be safe…so this was perfect. I ordered a coke and sat down. Unfortunately I felt like I WAS in the U.S. due to the amount of Americans there. I didn’t acknowledge anyone…really wasn’t crazy about getting into a conversation and of course you can’t help but overhear what people are saying. I don’t know what it is about Americans and why they think it’s ok to drop F bombs all the time, with other people around at a restaurant. God, it was annoying. I almost couldn’t wait to leave. It’s like they think since they’re in a different country, it’s ok to forget their manners. I can totally see why foreigners have a negative view of us.
The burger came out and looked great. I had a feeling there was no way I’d be able to eat it all though. Overall, it wasn’t too bad. A little dry. At least the fries were homemade, albeit a little tough. Bacon was a nice touch. I don’t get bacon around here. It will satisfy my craving for a while. And BTW, the burger and fries (which came w/ it) cost about $10.50. ugh.
As I sat there listening to the mind numbing babble coming out of this guy’s mouth I couldn’t help but notice the magnificent Almond trees in front of and over me. We feed those leaves to the two toed sloths and I wasn’t sure how many of you had actually seen an almond seed.
This is a Tropical Almond tree and you can eat the almonds (some make wine out of them I believe) but I’ve never tried either. I don’t know if this is the same tree that ‘normal’ almonds come from though…I kind of doubt it. You can see a cluster of seeds in the middle of those leaves. I also found a beautiful green almond seed on the black beach and thought the contrast made a good picture.
Feeling like I weighed 300 pounds, I waddled down to the beach…and man…my toes were BURNIN’ and I had shoes on…the sand will get in them no matter what. It was very beautiful and deserted so I took it in for a while and played in the water. On the way back toward town, I stopped and took a picture of an old barge that had wrecked at the beginning of Playa Negra. Sorry for the horrible picture. I really do need to just take my real camera out for a tour one day.
Moving on to the newest creature from Land of the Lost…saw this giant hopper on my chair the other morning. He didn’t move much, except for one or two leg stretches. Then that night he started waking up. Next morning he was gone. Very beautiful actually, but the barbs on his legs were kinda creepy. He was at least 5 1/2″ from front to back leg.
I’m going to vent about one of the things that annoys me the most about being here: burning of brush. I swear, this is probably why I feel dizzy most of the time.
It’s very disconcerting to see your neighbor burning a pile of leaves, branches, etc. no more than 30 feet away from your all wooden house, separated only by what else, bushes! Then the smell, the smoke, the ash. Look, I get it…there’s not exactly brush pickup here and the jungle takes over quickly. There’s no other way to get rid of the stuff. Every single day you can look up and see someone burning a pile of SOMETHING and you can always smell it. Even at night which is the most annoying. I’m sure they are very experienced at building and watching over these fires, but for someone who isn’t from here, it’s a little odd to witness. I hate having to smell this all the time.
Ok, off the soapbox there. Here’s something cool…our currency! What other country loves its animals so much that they put it on their money? Well, actually I do have to say I’m a bit shocked about the shark one. I was absolutely sickened the other day by looking through a grocery ad and seeing that they had shark fillets on sale. Wait…what? I know finning is a huge problem here so I can’t say they take care of their ocean inhabitants as well as they should.
The 1000 Colones bill is really weird…it sort of feels plastic and there’s an area on there which is see through (not pictured). Merchants constantly check the 10,000 bills ($20) to see if they’re fake. I will say this, I have never been ripped off getting change back here. People are very honest (unlike they were in Mexico) and the conversion is easy enough to do (unlike Mexico). It stays pretty stable here and I think for the most part you can count on 500/1. Although the American banks sure do get more than that when you use the ATM or credit card. It’s not much but I’ll tell ya it’s never been 500/1.
Oh, there’s one other thing I wanted to mention. I found out that the stomach issues here run rampant. It now makes sense why all the expat women look the way they do. I guess this is how you tell the local expats from the tourists around here. I no longer look like a tourist! I’m down 15 pounds in 5 weeks. So if you’re looking for a rapid weight loss program, c’mon down!! From what I gather, it’s mostly due to the water. I really need to stop drinking things at local restaurants made with water. Although my kitchen sink has a filter, who knows when it was changed last. I do filter my drinking water with my Berkey but I brush my teeth with tap. I suppose it could also be the food here. And the fact that there’s no hot water to disinfect dishes and silverware with. Like an idiot I hadn’t bought bleach until the other day so I really need to disinfect my cutting boards with it. Yuck. There is so much junk around here (bacteria-wise) that it’s gonna catch up to you eventually.
It is suggested that you go to the pharmacy and get ivermectin every six months to de-worm yourself…mmmmm. I think I’ll get some before I leave here. You know, living in paradise might SOUND good…but I’m appreciating the U.S. a little more everyday. Down to my dream last night about being thrilled to be in a Wal-Mart. Shhhhhh…don’t tell anyone I said that.