Independent Photography

San Jose


A man feeding pigeons in Plaza de la Democracia in central San Jose Costa Rica

When I travel to a new city I usually like to have a day or two to do nothing except walk, so this morning I walked for 6 hours.  I wandered downtown bought some sunglasses and tried to find out where to meet my bus to Nosara tomorrow morning.  It turns out Google lied!  (I know, it’s outrageous and shocking)  Google said that all buses to other parts of Costa Rica left from the central bus station in San Jose, called the Coca Cola bus station, which is named for the former bottling plant that the bus station is located in.  It turns out their buses don’t go to Nosara… neither did the next station, or the next.  It gave me a chance to bust out some serious Spanish as I had to start asking street vendors how to get to the right one.  It took about 45 minutes, but I now have my ticket for the bus, which departs at 5:30 tomorrow morning; gross.

I watched these two guys cat call over the bench at that girl for almost ten minutes, it was clear she wasn't going to respond but she had a smile on her face... It seems thats how flirting starts in this country, with catcalls, I've noticed that people in cars will wolf whistle out the window as they pass cute girls...

 

After that I wandered more, bought some bread and cheese from the grocery store and some apples from a fruit vendor… the apples were from the states though, I wanted some local fruit…

The view looking down Ruta 1 (main highway) north, I flew into Costa Rica at night so I missed the topography, however, every time I turn a new direction I see these cloud draped mountains.

 

With my hunger assuaged, eyes protected, bus ticket in hand and slightly exhausted and sweaty I headed back towards my hostel, to a huge park near by.  I wandered around and siesta-ed in the shade of a tree.  The weather is literally perfect.  The air temperature is around 25 Celsius and there is a constant shifting breeze, a welcome change from the minus 30 wind tunnel called Ottawa….

 

As I was sitting under the tree napping I woke up and saw, what I assume to be a dad playing soccer with his two kids. It made for a nice happy photo, although how they played in the direct sunlight like that gahhh.

As a photographer I’m a huge fan of juxtaposition, to the left of the field these guys were playing on was a massive soccer stadium.  I wasn’t able to frame it in the background and still get the faces while they played so… I took a second photo.

 

Here it is! The Estadio Nacional (national stadium) those little dots in front of it are another group of people playing pick-up soccer.

 

After an hour or so of relaxation and soccer creeping I continued my about-town trek and stumbled on this random piece of Canadiana.   While American fast-food chains dominate the main roads of downtown San Jose, the Bank of Nova Scotia somehow managed to get the tallest tower and thus dominates the skyline.  Some International Relations/Development theorists would argue that all of this foreign direct investment is a good thing for the country’s development and economy… some.

 

I have an uncle who has some executive job in Scotiabank's international development wing, he'd worked in Venezuela and Peru, I'm gonna have to figure out if he's involved in the many, many Scotiabank's I've seen wandering around...

As I sat down to edit some pictures a new arrival to the hostel came out back for a cigarette.  Curious about what I was up to he asked and we struck up a conversation.  We sat and talked about nothing really and yet covered every topic from climate differences between Wales and Canada and Costa Rica, plane crashes, previous romances and our limited understanding of Costa Rica.  This is one of my favorite parts of backpacking, the interesting people you meet and the stories and experiences they choose to share.  Since I was having a conversation I had closed the lid of my laptop, and while we were talking a bird shit on it, they say its good luck if a bird shits on you… I think it was good luck the bird shit after I’d closed the lid.

 

That's my hostel, and the street below. They have a really nice little patio where I camped out this afternoon to write and edit.

Today has been a wonderfully relaxing day.  I’ve been in touch with Voice of Nosara and they’re ready for my arrival, apparently they’ve adopted a cat, which is awesome.  I love cats.  Early morning tomorrow and six hours on a bus, but my next post will be from the Voice of Nosara office.

Another post, another self-portrait of myself in my 'editing suite,' hehehe.

Peace,

Adam Dietrich

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