Mike was super sick.
We thought that spending New Years Day just resting would help him recover quickly, but it was now January 2nd and he seemed even worse than before. We relaxed for the morning and slowly packed up our stuff. Jacó had been an interesting New Years adventure for sure, but we had seen and experienced all we needed to of this seedy town. It was time to move on to new places and new adventures.
We left fairly early in the day, stopping at a restaurant near San Jose to get food. The pasta we ordered was terrible, and we decided that we should just stick to Costa Rican food from now on. Mike was getting even worse, and he left mid meal to go sleep in the car.
I didn’t know much about our next destination, only that we were heading back into the mountains. We would be staying in a cabin again, and the bar had swings for seats. It sounded pretty great to me.
Mike had been our reliable and steadfast driver for most of the trip, but his mysterious illness had now left him fairly incapacitated. So Omnia volunteered to drive while Mike slept. We had been relying on Google Maps for directions throughout the trip, and so far it had been fairly dependable. But as we continued this journey, things started getting pretty weird. Google Maps started sending us up some dangerously steep roads. I have never seen roads this steep in the US, and was amazed the car could even drive up some of them Sometimes the confusing directions would send us the wrong way on one-way roads and we would have to turn around. Other times, confusing directions would get us lost in horrible little towns with roads so narrow we could barely fit through them. I was impressed Omnia was handling some of these challenges, because I’m not sure how well I would have.
Eventually we started to gain some confidence that we were getting closer. Gradually the roads started to wind back and forth and the views became breathtaking. We were leaving the beach town of Jaco and ascending back up into Costa Rican Mountains. The roads were long and winding, but Omnia was doing a good job climbing them… until the very end. The last road we encountered was so vertically steep and horrifyingly narrow that none of us felt confident to attempt it. Fortunately by this point, Mike was having a moment of lucidity. He took over and gunned the car up the dangerously steep incline, getting us safely to the top.
Our cabin/hotel was fortunately at the end of this steep incline. Getting from destination to destination in Costa Rica was proving to be more challenging with each trip, and we were all so glad to make it here. The sun was already setting and once again I was glad that we weren’t driving these dilapidated mountain roads at night.
We went to check in, but the woman at the front desk didn’t speak any English. I had to be the Spanish translator, and things seemed pretty straight forward. She told us about the cabins, she told us about the restaurant, and she showed us menus. And then she very casually mentioned that our rooms had no electricity.
“NO ELECTRICITY???” I blurted out in Spanish.
She repeated it as if it was no big deal, and then started talking about the restaurant again. We all looked at each other. This was going to be interesting.
So we put our bags in our pitch-black cabin and went directly to the bar/restaurant. Fortunately the restaurant had electricity. The bar had swings for seats, so that was fun. The food was the worst I’d had in Costa Rica. Mike’s health was gradually deteriorating. He looked ready to die. He left dinner early to go back to the room. The rest of us were trying to figure out what the heck to do in a pitch black cabin with no lights or electricity.
I was fortunate to be traveling with an awesome group of very easy going people. Staying in a cabin without electricity sucked, but it was only for one night. We were able to joke it off and see it as just another adventure. Plus we all knew it would make a great story to talk about for years to come!
We went back to the cabin for a minute to check on Mike. He seemed worse than ever. He was pale, sweaty, and shaking. He needed sleep, and so we decided not to hang out in the cabin keeping him awake. Besides, there wasn’t much we could do in a pitch black cabin anyway. So Brian, Omnia, and I took a bottle of wine and went to explore.
We were lucky. Shortly down the road was a little ampitheater with electricity. After turning on the lights to the ampitheater, we were able to relax and have some amazing conversations. After a couple hours, the wine was finished. The three of us walked back up the forested path and to our pitch black cabin. We had to get up early the next morning for some more adventures!