We all have cities and countries that hold a special place with us for whatever reason, it brought us some sort of happiness well for me Costa Rica is one of those countries. In 2005 when I embarked on my trip around the world Costa Rica is where it all began and after a long day of flying that started in Boston at 6am I was very excited to be back. Once I’d cleared customs and exited the airport there they stood as vivid as it was five years ago a fleet of red cabs awaiting passengers to take them to thier final destinations. Something else as vivid today as it was eight years ago, the traffic, after stop and go for about an hour I reached my hotel and once I’d checked and relaxed for a while I left and just started walking San Jose with no direction.
With each new turn onto a different street the memories came pouring back and all the fun I had when I was here. I reached the city center and just sat and observed, it was a perfect sun filled day and it felt like a million miles from a very cold Boston. The streets were a perfect mix of everything you could ask from just about every fast food chain on the planet to home goods sold on the streets, pharmacies and grocery stores to restaurants, bars and whatever else your heart desired.
I bought lunch from one of the many store front restaurants and went and sat in the Pedestrian Mall and just observed Costa Ricans going about their day some in a hurry and others taking their time. There’s nothing quite like people watching, it is a universal cast of characters from the business men and women in a hurry trying to get somewhere, to the old just sitting about some with cares in the world and some without. Families out for the day, mothers and fathers watching children play. Teenagers and twenty somethings living life some in love and others looking for it. A scene that plays out twenty four seven in each and every city around the world.
San Jose’s nightlife is among the best I’ve experienced in all of my travels and what makes it so unique, so special is that it is not just about a great night on the town dancing the night away but it also about the culture. Throughout my travels in Central and South America it is a part of the world where the culture is apart of everyday life and the nightime as well. Each night I was out whether it be a bar or nightclub Spanish music was always played. Now I do not know the difference between the types of music but the moment it was played the dance floor would fill up immidiately as the music of the country took center stage and as much as I love dancing this was a time even I had to leave the dance floor. The music was all their own as was the dancing and I just stood, watched and admired it was my return to this very special country and I was going to enjoy every minute I was there.