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"Doing Latin America, Mostly by Luck"

Episode 1 - October 2009

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Local and Loco in Costa Rica

The first of two Sarasota contingents arrived, as scheduled, on Tuesday in Costa Rica to attend the AA conference beginning this Friday.

Sir Rob of Almeria Castle and Lady Elizabeth de Isle Longue, accompanied by Lady Joan de Caroline du Nord departed the moors of Sarasota at 4:15 AM and arrived at the Spirit ticket counter at the Fortress of Lauderdale at 8 AM after re-gassing the rented auto and turning it in. The drawbridge was down and beckoning and we were pleasantly surprised to have moved across and through the Spirit vanguard and check-in line within 15 minutes, as opposed to 2½ hours on the last trip. No computer failures this time. 

Another 20 minutes had us through security, munching overpriced donuts, assorted and varied crumpets, rare, imported Jamaican meat pies and other goodies in the gate area where we were joined by Lady Marilyn of the Duchy of Miami. The Air Coach departed said Fort 5 minutes early and arrived in San Jose, Costa Rica in the Province of Alejuela 20 minutes early.

The quartet negotiated Imigracion, Baggage Claim and Customs in San Jose with such aplomb that we had to wait more than an hour at the SANSA gate even after taking out time to purchase some local currency from the Banco Nacional’s on-site ATM. This also gave a few of us (you know who you are) added time to practice imperfect currency conversion techniques. We then processed through SANSA security, which consisted of a 14-year old boy with a magnetic wand he much loved to wave at us with great flare. Subsequently we had ample time to sample liquid refreshments from two locked cooler cabinets thoughtfully provided by SANSA Nobles while waiting to board our 12 seat air coach.

The flight was uneventful (damn) and we arrived at Aeropeurto de Quepos Internationale without incident. Well, OK, there was that minor collision alarm that went off when we descended a bit too rapidly on final approach. I’m sure it had nothing to do with the fact that the pilot was munching a large slice of fresh pineapple with one hand and steering with the other.

We were met at XQP by the PayLess rental representative, another young knight of few years and great enthusiasm, who processed my reservation in only 30 minutes. We stuffed the four of us, with much luggage, into a Suzuki Jimmy and made it to the Hotel Mono Azul (Blue Monkey) in about 15 minutes, only to be met by Sir Chip, the infamous innkeeper of said establishment.

Our trip was complete, and nary a bandito did we see anywhere along out path.

The Ladies Noble are well ensconced in our rainforest shelter and three of them are already out over-frying their bodies on Playa de Quepos.

I have taken up residence at my new quarters with Sir Keith of Quepos where I was gently awakened at 5 AM by cocks crowing and a hound howling, Said beast must definitely be a descendant of the Baskervilles. I must admit, I love the whole scenario.

El Kahuna


P.S. If anyone hears anything about Luis please update me. I last left him by cell phone Monday afternoon 60 miles into Mexico just after he had encountered an 8 hour delay that included a strip search. I know, the images are frightening.

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