We travelled to the capital of Costa Rica, San Jose. Ollie and I needed to access the cash machine after spending all of our money on cocktails, but after reaching the capital and seeing some ‘chavs’ arguing (apparently, chavs have travelled the globe and aren’t limited to the UK as I had originally thought!) and another man looking at us on the coach, with his hand down his pants, like a sex pest, we decided that we could probably live without the cash.
Ath went to a pharmacy to get some medicine for Adrian’s toe, and although she is fluent in Spanish, Ollie and I feared for her safety. That is saying something that I, who will walk around St Pauls (apparently, a proper bad ass place to people who aren’t from Bristol) but didn’t want to use a cash machine at San Jose in the middle of the afternoon.
We were dropped off at the hotel and got changed, ready for a reluctant walk around the capital. We figured safety was in numbers and asked the reception for the room numbers of most of couples in the group and invited them along with us. As we were doing this, Swanny and Rachel walked into the hotel. I haven’t filled you in on this lovely couple yet. On face value, Swanny looks like someone you wouldn’t want to cross, not only does he has massive muscles, but he has tattoos everywhere, including Rachel’s name on his head (I suggested to Ollie that he could get my name on his head, he said no).
They had been looking for the supermarket and Swanny had asked a local lad riding a push bike which way it was, and the lad looked at Swanny in the eye and said “Fuck off”. If the youngsters of San Jose weren’t even polite to Swanny, then Ollie and I had no chance.
We hadn’t found our way to a cash point yet (as we didn’t want to get mugged) so we decided that we would spend our very last bit of cash of some alcohol to drink at the hotel as Rach and Swanny had kindly invited us to their room for the evening.
Mike and Louise joined us on the walk to the supermarket. They are both from London, and whilst I am not suggesting that London is dodgy, because it isn’t, any more than Bristol is, but Mike is a cabby, so he must have seen some stuff and even he didn’t want to walk in San Jose. We rushed our way to the supermarket, almost fleeing to the hotel a few times but luckily found the Costa Rican answer to Tesco and got a bottle of Smirnoff for £5 (winning).
We power walked back to the hotel and were glad that we had decided not to join some others of the group who had gone drinking in the local bars. I don’t want to paint a bad picture of San Jose, because to be honest, we didn’t see it properly, but we were glad to spend the night in our friend’s hotel room after a very busy week.
We got to know Louise and Mike, Swanny and Rach pretty well. We soon realised that Swanny and Rach are a ‘power couple’ having been through thick and thin. Swanny gave Ollie and I some very good marriage advice and we left the evening buzzing and saying that we hoped our marriage would result in us being as strong and as in love, in the years to come as Rachel and Swanny are. They just have such an aura about them, which makes you feel so comfortable and so welcome and that isn’t something you see very often.
Sadly, the morning after the night before, wasn’t so good. I found myself with a serious case of the ‘Delhi belly’ as my mother calls it and I was unable to sit through breakfast. Given the time difference of seven hours, this was one of the only times I had managed to talk to my Mum, as I complained about my poorly tummy. I was worried about the five-hour bus journey to our next destination as I curled up in the foetal position in the bed and wished I could feel even a tiny bit better.
After a little while, I had no choice but to get onto the tour bus. This wasn’t going to be pretty. The bus was good, but the roads were from it. It was extremely bumpy and I couldn’t find a way to get comfortable. That bus journey was honestly hell on earth, I could hear Jonathan showing us points of interest along the way and I really couldn’t care less, which is so unlike me.
I could feel myself getting worse and worse and so I text my Mum, not giving a damn about the 10p text charge, because Mums always knows what to do. The second worst thing to happen on a coach trip happened and I could feel my body telling me it was ready to get busy, through my mouth.
I told Ollie and he dashed around the coach asking if anybody had a carrier bag I could use. Thankfully somebody else was more prepared than we were and I died a little inside as I was very poorly on the bus. I felt better after and tied a knot in the bag, only to feel a wet drip on my foot about twenty minutes later. We had to search for yet another carrier bag and I didn’t think it could get any worse.
We were fast approaching a parrot sanctuary where the lady hand reared baby macaws and then let them come and go as they pleased. I really wanted to see parrots in the wild and had so far only managed to capture photos of them flying over us, and if you zoomed right in, you could tell what they were and with a heavy heart, I told Ollie that he had better take the pictures because I felt too poorly. But luckily when we had arrived, after a bottle of coke and some crisps, I had a little more bounce about me and left the coach carrying my bag of sick like it was the newest version of Louis Vuitton and took the photographs myself.