Thursday, February 5, 2009

Sunset at Pavones, Costa Rica

(Note: This was written before the Panama entries. It is out of chronological order)
Pavones- where the Bar, “Esquina del Mar” opens by 10am to welcome surfers paddling in from their morning sessions. 20 and 30year olds with unshaved chins and bare chests sit at the counter that gives them a direct view of the sets coming in, or not. I just sent Brian off on the yellow school bus to Golfito. Today is his turn to try recovering a full propane tank. He’ll ride 2 hours 20 minutes and have 30 minutes to obtain our fuel for the next 2 months of cooking, then back on the same bus for the last run of the day to Pavones. (author’s note: Brian returned with an empty propane canister.)

Meanwhile I’m tucked behind the low seawall under almond trees, coconut palms and others, listening to the dance beat and repetitive lyrics from the “Esquina del Mar.” I can see Nomad nose into the wind as surfers languidly wait close to shore for the next set to roll in.

From Pavones there are a couple of surf spots to check out on our trip around Punta Armuelles, and the border of Panama. We’re looking forward to exploring the reported clear waters and beautiful islands between here and Panama City. Pavones has been a nice place to stop. It’s a quiet yet living town with soccer games all weekend. Locals picnic from the backs of their cars parked next to the ocean or by the cold clear river that empties into it just south of town. Travelers are not a novelty and yet we don’t feel like every local sees dollar bills walking down the street as we approach. It’s a comfortable, clean small village in a beautiful setting. Palm trees lean out over the beaches and scarlet macaws announce themselves overhead. There are pleasant places to sit in the shade.

Maybe the reason I like Pavones so much is that it is so UNLIKE Golfito. The dirty broken looking bars with drunks wandering the street at all times of day are only part of the unpleasantness of the place. The only clean shady place to be was at Tierra Mar, the cruiser “clubhouse” next to where we anchored.

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