The Pop Up Shop

Trip Start May 29, 2010
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Trip End Jun 05, 2010


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Where I stayed
Surf Simply

Flag of Costa Rica  , Guanacaste,
Friday, June 4, 2010

Sunday morning, we awoke early to begin our first day of surfing, which would initiate the standard daily schedule for the rest of the week. 
7AM: Breakfast
8AM: Surf!
10:30AM: Theory
11:30AM: Brunch
1:30PM: Yoga
3PM: Surf!
6PM: Dinner
 
On Sunday, we spent the morning working on steering the boards. After a quick overview on the sand from Luke and Sam we all kept to our bellys, learning how to shift our weight back and forth on the board to slow the board and change direction

After a very helpful theory lesson from Ru on Tides, we grubbed on some of Gem's brunch  and lounged by the pool, napping the afternoon away until the late session call came. 
We boarded Ru's surf tram and headed to the beach for our first stand up session. 

After 90 minutes, we were dead...and flopped back to the beach with our 9 footers in tow. Having worked our fins off all day, we were all ready for a big meal so we followed Becky to Giardino Tropicale where we enjoyed some carb heavy pizzas and pastas, washed down with a few bottles of Imperial. 

Monday and Tuesday saw us quickly improve our surfing skills, to the point where Nina was standing up with consistency (Check out the Video!!!) and I had even paddled "Out the Back" to take on the big waves...one of which was nice enough to host my verticality and shepherd me to the shore. 
   
I also tried Yoga for the first time, but decided to skip out for the rest of the week after I fell over during a handstand attempt and realized I was utlimately getting more banged up from stretching than surfing

We also had some great meals....on Monday with Yoga instructor Jessie, we visited Dona Ana, a very local tico seafood spot located on the front porch of a family home in the mountains. We had no idea what we were in for when we ordered "Mariscos Familia" and after a refreshing ceviche appetizer, we found ourselves staring down 4 large platters in front of us, futily attempting to work through avocado salad, dorado fillets, grilled squid and shrimp/veggie tempura.

Polishing off half of each...we called it a night and patiently waited for the family patriarch to being us la cuenta. 

"un minuto" turned into 20...and eduardo began lurking in the entry...anxious to get us back into the SUV for our trip home. 

Tuesday night was another great dinner, this time at Bella Vista, a restaurant owned and run by Debbie, a former Enron Exec who left Houston for Culinary school and then Costa Rica in 2000. With her savings and retirement fully destroyed by her former employer, she now focuses on making her restaurant a success. Given the spectacular views and her amazing fried chicken, she seems like she is on the right track. 

On Wednesday, we all had a day off so Nina and I took out a couple of ATV "Quads" to explore the area. While rain often threatened, we ended up with a perfect day out on Playa Pelada, about 5 clicks north of Giuones and Surf Simply. With a totally deserted beach, we placed our toes firmly in the soft sand and took a few refreshing dunks in the amazing water. For lunch, we walked back along our secluded cove, to the main beach entrance for lunch of Arroz con Pollo and Dorado filet at Olga's. Sitting on wooden benches overlooking the ocean, we may have discovered our retirement spot.  

Hopping back on a quad, we wound our way around dirt paths until we again met the main road and took an easy ride down the hill to Guiones for our "recovery" massages. As we pulled up to the resort, rain began to come down and the thunder started to wail. Running for cover, I curled up with a book while Nina got her time with Crystal who turned out to be the best masseuse on earth. 

With the rain coming down like crazy, we waited for Tom to finish a final session (in lightning no less!!!) and mounted our quads for dinner in town. With the huge rain drops smacking us in the face we had a tough enough time seeing in front of us. Given that the power had gone out, we couldn't even tell if the restaurant was open until we ventured up the long driveway and heard the faint sound of guitar coming from the deck above. 

The gas was on, so we ordered some grilled fish and pork chops while we sat by candle light with 20 other patrons, listening to a very talented guitarist playing through his catalog. 

Heading back into the rain, we sped through Guiones, pulled up to the lode and did a quick dismount into our quaint little chalet. 

What a great day!


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