On The Road To Paradise: Overcoming Challenges In Costa Rica


By Joe Germinario

When I read on Blue Osa’s “about us” page that the bus was only for experienced travelers or those adequate in the Spanish language I couldn’t help but wonder: could I do it?

I decided that there was only one way to find out.

The first bus was at 8 am. I woke up around 6:30 and packed my bags. I caught a taxi around 7:00 (making sure it was one of the red ones with the yellow triangle) and showed him the directions – Transportes Blanco – Barrio Mexico buses a Puerto Jimenez.

“No ay problema.” He said

We pulled up around 7:30 and even with half an hour to spare the place was packed. Lucky I wasn’t any later!

I took my place in line and before long they opened up.

As they raised the door I could hear a dog barking fiercely. I walked in expecting a beast, instead I found a little guy tied up in the corner. I felt badly, but my tired mind screamed for him to be quiet. We can be our most insensitive when stressed cant we?

I was about to zone him out when a local girl with curly yellow hair and two small hula hoops hanging from her jean shorts walked right up to him without hesitation.

“Watch out!” my mind screamed, “he might bi…” but my thoughts were cut short.

He jumped up and started licking her hand wagging his tail ridiculously.

She turned and went back to her place in line, the dog sat and his bark lowered to a whine. Looking at Rama lying by my feet now, I can’t help but think how lucky some of us are.

I moved forward in line, paid the $15 fare and went to find my place.

A little after 8 we were on our way. I sat back and watched as the bus weaved its way through the busy San José streets.

The noise and movement of the city were beating down heavily on my already drowsy head, but as we moved steadily towards the mountains and away from the city the air became fresh and light. Within two hours the air grew thinner and we found ourselves amongst the clouds looking out on lush green mountains.

We moved along for the next 6 hours stopping twice for the bathroom (200 colones to use).

As we closed in on Puerto Jimenez one of the bus workers came around to collect our tickets. Quick tip: don’t lose it. A gentleman sitting next to me had to pay twice.

We pulled up to the station about 20 minutes later. I got my bag down from luggage rack and stepped off the bus. Before I could even take my bearings I heard a friendly voice from behind me, “Joe?” “Yes,” I answered as I turned to see a friendly round face smiling back at me. “Blue Osa,” he said as he pointed to himself.

The friendly gentleman placed my bag in the back of his car and I jumped into the front seat.

“Como te llamas?” I asked

“Nago,” he said

“Mucho Gusto”

I was happy to be on the last leg of my journey and finally able to relax.

Suddenly an elegant bird flew into our path and hopped to the side of the road. Nago slowly brought the car to a stop. There was no rush and so I was grateful. He told me that it was a crested caracara, my first!

We rolled up soon after, Nago unloaded my bag and led me through the entrance. I found myself looking down a stone path lined with pipa cocos. In the distance, through the palms and past Blue Osa’s green field I could see waves crashing white on the sandy shore.

I wasn’t there for a minute before Aaron came to greet me with a friendly handshake and a smile. I was welcomed warmly and felt it.

The birds are now singing a sweet summer song, the ocean breeze is easing me into my wicker chair as I reflect on the road that brought me to paradise.



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