"I lived in old San Jose" Provincia de San José by ornito

Provincia de San José Travel Guide: 566 reviews and 957 photos

San Jose -- a mixture

I first encountered San Jose in 1975 as a 19 year old exchange student. I lived near the University not to far from the Iglesia de San Pedro, which was a big landmark. The entire city could be traversed in a morning, from my barrio (la Paulina) to la sabana on the opposite end of town. Desamparados was on the far edge of town. All the buses went to Parque Morazan in the center of the city. There were no connections between the outer areas of the city. I wondered why they called all the little shops "pulperia", what did they sell there, octopus?

I loved the little Costa Rican wooden houses that were everywhere. They were simple. No insulation, no furnace, no ductwork, basically just dollhouses where people lived. They could do that because of the mild climate. I loved the strange foods you could get down there: nances, pejibayes, and palmitos. I loved hiking in the hills of San Ramon. I loved the fact that the country was so small, and that you could get the train and be on the black sands of Puntarenas in the same day. I loved the Ticos -- they seemed easy going compared to some of the more politically radicalized countries. I loved visiting my friend Julio who lived in basically a wooden box. I got my own wooden box later on and I liked it too. Mine was even better, because it was on the second story. It was a coldwater flat but I didnt care. Who needs a hot bath in Costa Rica. I didn't need the ants and fleas and mildew that develops during the rainy season but in retrospect it is a funny story when in the middle of the night I threw my mattress (really just a straw tick) down the flight of stairs and started whacking it with a stick and a whole bunch of red ants promptly emerged from
the ticking. Dang! That's what was biting me! I was sleeping on that WOW!

I loved eating lunch at Dona Juana's. I developed the taste for cilantro down there that has never left me. I loved visting Dona Juana and sitting on her porch on fine evenings and watching her try to set me up with her son. Nice boy, but not my type unfortunately. I loved a lot of things about San Jose. I would love to go back.

  • Last visit to Provincia de San José: Dec 1975
  • Intro Written Mar 13, 2008
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ornito Used To Live Here!

ornito

“Stay away from where all the other gringos go”

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