Saturday, Jan 31 2004 -- JFK to San Jose

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First, the explanation about "Dublers". The tour agency decided somewhere along the way that my name was Dubler instead of Dudley and all the paperwork, hotel reservations, etc. had that name. I had fears of not being able to stay in the hotels because the reservations were in the wrong name. Fortunately, nobody cared, or even checked.

Saturday morning bright and early, we headed off the JFK airport. The security checks weren't too annoying and the lines weren't too long, and soon enough, we were in the air. Five hours and a rubber airline meal later, we landed at San Jose airport in Costa Rica.

After enduring an enormous, slow queue to get through immigration, we picked up our checked baggage and were met by a driver from Costa Rica Tours, who drove us to our hotel, the Brittannia, in San Jose.

After unpacking a bit, we set out to explore San Jose, and also to find an ATM to get some local currency. Janet had the foresight to get a few colones in New York City before she left, so we had a little spending money.

We found a bank kiosk containing a dozen ATMs, but it had an enormous queue waiting to get in, so we wandered about a bit, window shopping (and stopping for helado en vaso plastico) (ice cream in a plastic cup) before heading back to try the ATM again.

This time, the queue was short, but we found that none of the ATM's in this kiosk would actually work. And our Spanish was too shaky to ask intelligent questions of the guard, who I doubt knew much anyway.

Semi-dejected, we walked back towards the Hotel Britannia, when I spied another ATM kiosk near the Hotel/Casino Europa. Surprise, surprise, it worked marvelously, and soon we all had a little wad of colones to call our own.

We returned to the Brittannia and (after a bit of dithering) had dinner in the Hotel restaurant. This turned out to be quite good, with a very attentive and well spoken (in English) waiter.

We retired early, which was to become the pattern for our trip.

preparing to fly to Pura Vida
customized CB750 on streets of San Jose, CR
market scene, San Jose
buskars in San Jose market plaza
San Jose building
San Jose building - "Correos y Telegrafos"
da itty bitty fuzz
Kate at "our" ATM
Hotel/Casino Europa sign

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