Costa Rica Summer 2013 Day 2
Alexander Aston Zapata
Today my brother and I went to the gym in the morning to get a little workout in before the day got started. We were a little disappointed that the gym didn’t have near as much as we thought and the main machine that we could have used was broken. Nonetheless, we made it work and we enjoyed ourselves. The gym is in a neighboring hotel on the fourth floor. This allowed for a beautiful view and I was able to get a panorama shot of the view. That was very nice.
After going to the bank to exchange money, we continued on to the “centro”, a huge warehouse that was turned into a shopping center with small local shops set up along the walls and local restaurants. They have streets and all. This is where you can find typical foods and crafts of Costa Rica. That was very fun and I got a souvenir for myself there.
The supermarket was much like going on a trip to Kroger except that all the products are in
Spanish and the prices are in colones instead of dollars. They have a big section of fruits and vegetables and many of them I was unable to recognize. There was one fruit that looked similar to a strawberry but with hair where the seeds are. It was odd. The kiwis were twice as big as ones that I normally buy. Buying the food in the store was not that big of a deal. The fun came when Señora Zapata taught us how to cook. It is difficult to cook a new type of food for the first time. Our experience was made even more difficult because all of our instructions were in Spanish. The fruits of our labor were well rewarded. I have discovered that I like plantains, a lot, and in pretty much any way you want to cook it. Polina, Señora Zapata, and I worked in one kitchen while Alex cooked the meat in the other kitchen. Andrés was the only one not to help cook but he did wash the dishes for us.
Today was a very interesting day. We had a breakfast at the restaurant in our hotel. For the first time I tried a traditional Costa Rican dish rice with beans Gallo pinto. It was very good. After breakfast we walked through the park toward the museum. The trees in the park were very beautiful; they looked like somebody painted their bark. Unfortunately, the museum is closed on Mondays. So we decided to come back another day.
Then we took the bus to the center city of San José. The traffic in San José is very heavy, and many people drive motorcycles because on the motorcycle it’s easier to go through the traffic. The traffic here is very dangerous. Near the National theatre of Costa Rica was the square with a lot of pigeons. I fed the pigeons from my hands. It was a lot of fun. One pigeon sat on my head. We had lunch in the local bakery called Samuelito. I had enchilada. We also visited local bank to exchange dollars to colones, Costa Rican money. The bank was very big. In order to be served, you need first to get a number and wait until they call you.