Dining and Other Tidbits around Jaco

Good evening folks,

In my last post I told you about breakfasts around here and some of my morning routine. Tonight I want to talk a little about dinner.  Along with a little more about my life here in Jaco, Costa Rica.

I continue to start my day with meditations on lovingkindness around 0400-1430.  I found that if I get up at 0400 I can hear much more quiet sounds and that around 0420 the roosters wake up and they seem to call to one another up and down the street.  Of course between their crowing there are sounds of other birds waking and singing. So, the time is quite magical as the light begins to brighten.  I’m staying in a canyon type area of the rain forest so sun rise is hard to see, but the moon and stars at night are lovely to behold.

My view while lying by the pool
My view while lying by the pool

Today, I just did a little stretching and ran the length of Jaco beach (5km) both ways (10k) partially in the water. I only had to slow down when the waves caught me to my knees or when I saw some interesting rocks or shells.

That first shell has some spiny ridges as you can see. I’ve never seen a shell like that before. Of course the other little conch type shell is seen many place.  The rocks are blue and green with that little red one on the middle right that could be a tooth or something. I can’t seem to stop bring stuff home from the beach.

Today, I met a chocolate lab at Clarita’s where I had their Gringo Breakfast (bacon and eggs) some coffee and wonderful pineapple juice. I gave the Lab some of my bacon as she was quite friendly and well mannered.  She just lay down next to me and gave me loving looks.  I wondered if she was giving me a telepathic message from Rocky Dog that everything was alright. She looked like she just came back from swimming in the ocean and I’m sure Rocky dog would have loved it as well.

Yesterday, I didn’t even go to the beach but stayed home and did yoga by the pool, then tried to get a new remote for the air conditioner as the remote broke and I wasn’t able to get it to work.  After driving into Jaco where there was suppose to be a repair place according the internet but didn’t seem to exist in the two locations it suggested I started just stopping at all a/c places.  None of them had much in the way of stock and no one had a replacement remote for me.

Needless to say, I was a little frustrated as this remote belonged to the one quiet and efficient air conditioner in the small bedroom where I take my mid day siesta (it’s too hot to do much at that time) and without the A/C things were sure to heat up.  So, I set about repairing it myself with sweat dripping down my face and neck. I was eventually able to jury rig a broken wire part of a transistor using some gooey stuff that was near the transistor so that it works.  However, I am very careful in picking it up and laying it down as the connection is quite fragile.

I decided to go to Los Sueños Resort for dinner at the Marina that I checked out when I was looking for a new remote.  I went to Lanterna an Italian upscale restaurant with upscale prices rivaling ones in the states, but with less amenities.  It was air conditioned or I could have chosen to sit out side near the Marina.

I got their Tuna over a tomato avocado salad with arugula, basil, mushrooms and vinegarIMG_2036I had shot of bourbon and a glass of Australian Chardonnay.  The whole things was over $60   I thought I was back in the states. The tuna was very good as was the salad and they even gave me some bread but I did not feel like  I got a good deal. Of course the surrounding are beautiful as it is in this gloriously maintained resort/condominium/ gated community. DSCF1155DSCF1156I checked into the real estate office and you could get a small 2 bedroom condo for around $275,000 but the houses started at $500,000 and some were more then $1.5 million.  For all you golf guys/gals out there there is even a full 18 hole golf course in the middle, rain forest around the edges, a marina and their own private beach club. Not to mention all the pools and gardens.

After that excursion I had exhausted my food budget I went back to the casa, took a skinny dip in the pool and played a little guitar and mandolin.

So, today I decided that after my siesta I would go into Jaco for dinner and  catch some music at the Green room.  I thought the music started at 8 so I planned to eat first then catch the show after dinner. So I tried this place I found while walking around a couple of weeks ago that I like the menu and it appeared a nice place a little off the beaten path – Paparazzi’s restaurant and wine bar.

The place was empty and I wasn’t sure it was any good due to it being open but empty.  But I decided to go in anyway and was not disappointed. First I had a “natural” piña colada

Piña Colada
Piña Colada

Which tasted as good as it looks. Then I had their seafood ravioli plate. I apologize that I didn’t get a picture until it was mostly gone. But it was gusto mucho.

Remains of a seafood ravioli with clams, muscles, crab, shrimp, squid & octopus
Remains of a seafood ravioli with clams, muscles, crab, shrimp, squid & octopus

The clams were real small and the shrimp a tad over done but otherwise a delightful dish. I decided to have dessert and some coffee.

Dessert: Ice cream crepe with coffee
Dessert: Ice cream crepe with coffee

All this was $20 less then at Lanterna and just as good (the dessert was better here).  I noticed that during the entire time I was in the restaurant I was their only customer.  I was mildly surprised as this place had more elegance then many more crowded restaurants downtown and in my opinion better food with decent prices (the wine was a little high) and I did see some people walking by on their way to and from the beach. The beach was about a block away.  However, there were two empty lots at the corner of this street and Avenue Pastor Diaz (the main drag in Jaco) giving the street a little seedy look.

I asked the waiter how long they’ve been here and he indicate 5 years.  I asked him if they were doing well and he indicated yes, but as I said for the hour or so I was there I was their only customer on a friday night between 7 and 8pm. I wonder how long they’ll be able to stay in business. Their pasta was homemade as was their bread. Though like most place in Jaco bread is not commonly given when you sit down.  In fact, it wasn’t served until the ravioli’s and I could have used it with the salad that came with the meal. Again something that isn’t always included in the meals around here.

When I left it was around 8pm so I made my way to the Green Room where there was live music. Only to find out to my chagrin that the music wasn’t going to start until 9pm and I didn’t want to wait around by myself until then so I checked out another place that had music performing.  However, this guy was doing a lot of covers and changing the words getting the audience to sing classic lines, etc.. and while he was okay it was not what I was looking for so I went home.

I’m not good doing the night life thing anymore, my eyesight makes driving at night a little difficult and without anyone to talk to or hang with it only reinforces my loneliness.  On my way back to the house I thought that if Rocky was here at least I’d have someone to talk to and love.

I have a little over 2 more weeks here and need to get motivated to do somethings other then yoga, run and eat.  I tried to enroll in the Spanish school but it appears that they don’t need business as they don’t answer my emails and when I stopped by one their gate was locked without any bell to get their attention.

Tomorrow is Saturday so I’ll probably do some housecleaning, yoga and hopefully a drive to Estrillos and a swim in the ocean.  High tide will be later in the morning so I’ll see that beach during high tide. The last time I was there it was low tide and I could walk out to the Mermaid. I’ll try to get a picture of her surround by water.

Well, that’s it for tonight.  I hope you all are well and my friends in the frozen northern states are staying warm.  Sending waves of warm sunshine your way. Namaste

Steve

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