This is the story of my 6 months of studying in Arizona in 2010 and subsequent travels in Mexico, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua. Enjoy!

Saturday, July 7, 2012


Lotte and me
Lotte and I decided to go to Costa Rica. Why? I can't tell, really - besides a desire for adventure, the exotic taste of the name, the fact that its warmer than Peru this time of year, and a manageable prize of the flights. Then again... Who needs more reasons? :)

3rd of July we took off in the evening, to spend the night in Amsterdam. Luckily, I have many friends in that area, and finding a place to stay proved to be no big challenge. Mahsa and Salmaan hosted us, and I cannot imagine better hosts. As always we were treated with food, drinks, insightful talks, comfortable beds, extraordinary breakfast and even a candy stash for the air plane! Great foundation for holiday for sure.

We left in the morning a bit past 7, intending to fly at 11 AM. Didn't happen - we could see already when we arrived that we would be 1,5 hours late. Our layover in Atlanta was supposed to be 3 hours, so when we were airborne 4 hours later, it was already pretty clear that we were in for a night in Georgia. The flight itself was ok; obviously, I', not the best at sitting still for so long...

It was around 7 PM when we arrived to Atlanta, and then we needed to pass the delightful American security... It was ok though - the problem arose when we needed to figure out what our continued itinerary would look like. There was a HUUUUGE line at the Delta desk, with people waiting for over an hour. They did have some machines though, like the regular check in-thingies, and here I found out that we were booked at a flight to San José the next morning. It printed me some meal vouchers, but nothing for a hotel, which I knew we were entitled to as well. Not being keen on the line, I caught a Delta-person who wasn't behind a counter, just to ask why the machine couldn't print it all. She took me to the counter, managed the hotel, gave me instructions and overnight kits, and boarding passes. "I put you in the front of the plane", she said, and with no clear preference for which end of the plane I was in, I nodded, took the papers, and left for the hotel shuttles with Lotte.

Fireworks in Atlanta, 4th July 2012
And then we realised... We are in the US, and it is the evening of 4th of July. American independence day, so suddenly the talk we had heard about fireworks made sense. Could we sit that one over...? Noooo not really. :) So instead of going straight to the hotel, we took the train ("MARTA") to downtown. We got there just in time, catching a grandiose firework in the crowd of thousands of people, before walking back to the train, reaching the airport around 11 PM.

The hotel was basic, but those two queen beds were the sweetest I had seen for a while - the time difference setting our internal clock to around 6AM. We were hungry though, and ordered some wings from a local grill. And fell asleep before it got to us, 1h later, so we just took a few bites before going back to sleep. Waking up at 6, we quickly packed and were shuttled back to the airport while the sun was rising. We took our vouchers to TGI Fridays, where we had FANTASTIC breakfast... everything we needed, which for Lotte was eggs and bacon, and for me a bagel and yoghurt with granola and fruit. Uhm...

And then we realised what it meant that the Delta-woman booked us in the front of the plane. Business class... I have to say that being met with a mimosa (orange juice with champagne) wasn't at all bad, and the same goes for the size of the seats, amount of snacks, and everything else... It might sound overrated, but it was really a great experience to travel like that! :D I hope I can get used to monkey class on the way home...!

And then, you have to see this one picture from our flight into San José. Our first view of Costa Rica... Quite nice, huh? :) Tomorrow I will tell you about the rest of our 60 hour trip to our first Costa Rican destination, Monteverde, and our trips around the area! Hasta luego!

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