Wednesday, 24 December 2008

Mal Pais lives up to its name or why I will never learn the difference between Imperfecto and Indefinido

When I started off with Petites et Grandes Aventures – and bascially up until yesterday – the word „adventure“ actually always had a rather positive connotation. Well, as I said, up until yesterday December 23rd.

6.07 am. Mr Aventures is an early riser. I'm not. It's our second morning in Mal Pais, a surfer's paradise on the southern tip of the Nicoya peninsula. We've booked into a very cute little cabin right on the beach.

6.10 am. Mr Aventures nipps out, checks the weather condition, the waves and decides to go for an early surf.

6.15 am. He waxes his surfboard on the terrace and takes off. I decide to sleep in a it longer.

Between 6.20 and 6.30. I've just fallen asleep again as I suddenly feel a presence, very close - actually right next to my head. Instinctively I think this can't be Mr Aventures, he's out surfing. A fraction of a second later and the shadow is out the door. I'm storming behind, adrenaline pumping, brain on auto-pilot, blind without my glasses... and only wearing my undies. I'm just racing behind the guy, yelling trying to draw attention to the thief. I don't remember how I got around the hammock blocking the way in front of our cabin, I'm just running, screaming and shouting. 100 meters. Then it strikes me, what if he has an accomplice? What am I doing? The guy disappears in the bushes – I have two options, now quick decision Barb, I dart back. The beach is empty, no one has heard me, not even the fisherman at the end of the beach. F***. I'm angry, scared and really pissed off. I am in such a shock, I don't even remember a single detail of the thief – what did he look like? What did he wear?

6.35 am. I'm back at the cabin. I assess the damage, lock the door and go to find Mr Aventures.

6.45 am. I get Mr Aventures out of the water. It was such a peaceful morning and he seems to have a great time. Bummer.

6.50 am. We're back at the cabin, shell shocked, calling the manager.
My brown Marimekko bag is gone. And also the G10 Canon with all our holiday snaps. Damn. This stupid f***** he's probably thought he'd cracked the jackpot with my heavy bag... I would have loved to see his face when he opened it and saw: Spanish Level 1, Spanish Level 2, Spanish-German dictionary, Latin American Short stories in Spanish and German translation, Spanish vocabulary, Spanish grammar, plus a Gala and Vanity Fair magazine, along with my extensive collection of miles and more cards... Lufthansa, Air France, Qantas, British Airways, Air Berlin.

Shortly past 7 am. The very sweet manager arrives, and the night guard - who had left at 4 am.

7.30 am. Local police arrive on the scene. No one speaks English, great. I describe the facts for about the fourth time in broken Spanish, plus do a pantomime of the robbery. I'm clearly struggling with my Spanish verbs and the various past tenses that I was determined to learn during these holidays.

Well, so much for my good intentions, I will now certainly not improve my irregular verbs, nor my imperfecto nor indefinido, but I've managed to make a police statement in Spanish. And I think they told me there's a place in San Jose where I'll be able to claim my valuables and get reimbursed. That sounds too promising too be true, but I'll check it out.

For now we've moved up the hill, hopefully a safe distance enough from the beach, and I'm trying to stop scanning everyone suspiciously and looking for my brown bag and my yellow Spanish books.


Anonymous 28 December 2008 at 00:36  

What an annoying pre-christmas "present". I'm sorry! Much more annoying than the loss of Spanish books is of course the loss of the photos... :-(( Was looking forward to the wild rafting pics you promised. Try to stay positive though.... At least you weren`t hurt. (Such words of wisdom aren't much consolation, I know.) Hope the rest of your trip will be fabulous! Susanne

Arnaud 30 December 2008 at 12:17  

aie ! c'est moins fun le Costa Rica tout à coup... désolé pour le G10. Ca fait malheureusement partie des risques, mais je suis content de voir qu'il ne t'est rien arrivé...

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