Playa Dominical, Costa Rica

I tiptoed through the dorm room past eight sleeping strangers and closed the bathroom door. A shower seemed like a good idea, but the drain was clogged and held at least a few inches of water hostage. I turned on the water and let it run over my hands for a few minutes. Ice cold. I gave up and put my dirty clothes back on, brushed my teeth and packed my little red bag. It was the same backpack my brother had used in high school, and was all I had for the next two weeks. I hadn’t been in San Jose for more than 18 hours, and already I wanted to leave. I met up with Matt outside the hostel, and together we walked six blocks to a city bus stop. We bought tickets to Dominical for 9000 Colones, then sipped on station coffee while watching Spanish cartoons.

I settled into a window seat and laid claim to the one beside me with my Canon. Matt and I each had our own row. Three hours of camera conversation, Deadmau5 and an endless panorama of landscape porn carried us to the coast. We got off at the wrong stop and walked along the beach to a surf shangri-la. Simple, slow, and far from society. Green mountain valleys and lazy clouds; strung-up hammocks and shirtless office job drop-outs. The hostels were suspect, so I elected the beach as our common area; and a beached tree log for wave watching. Despite having officially exhausted my toiletry supply and shrinking collection of clean clothing, I was swimming in contentment. I was in Dominical, Costa Rica; and exactly where I wanted to be.