We set out early this morning for San Jose. The weather was beautiful and the traffic pretty much non-existent all the way to the capital. Before going to Price Smart to do a bit of shopping and meeting our guests, we went to the Bombardier dealership to pick up the parts we need to rebuild the ATV. We got there in plenty of time, at 8:45 am and we weren't expected to meet our guests until 10:15-ish. The dealership was only 15 minutes away from PriceSmart, so that gave us over an hour to pick up the parts, pay and be on our way. Ample time. We were greeted by the guy we've been dealing with since the beginning and he said his colleague would help him bring the parts down to the SUV. We waited for a few minutes and they both came out with the two biggest parts. We decided to take them out of the box to minimize the space in the back of the SUV (we had to keep in mind that we were doing a big shop at PriceSmart). Anyway, they brought down four more parts, which was great! Then they disappeared... for a very long while. Then finally, one of the guys came out and said that his colleague had gone for a coffee break (we learned later that there was a company birthday party or some kind of celebration going on so the other guy decided that was more important). At first, we couldn't believe someone would just stop doing the task at hand... customer service standards sure are different here. Then we looked at each other and knowingly said 'Costa Rica, baby'. But then after 20 more minutes, we were still waiting. It got to the point I had to go in and see what the heck was going on. Kevin removed the parts from the SUV and we told them we couldn't wait any longer – we'd have to come back next week. They were apologetic (kind of), and they tried to convince us they could get the stuff down and packed in our car in only a few minutes. We knew, however, getting the parts in the car was the first obstacle. Getting the invoice printed up, double checked, then going to the cashier to pay (crossing fingers she wasn't on her break)... all this takes time here in Costa Rica... we decided we didn't want to feel stressed. We opted to leave everything behind and go back another day next week.
We love just about everything in Costa Rica... but not everything is perfect and rosy all the time. We try very hard not to have that arrogant North American attitude when we encounter what we feel is backward behaviour, but there are times we are tested beyond normal limits. Then we breathe and remember that 99% of the time, we live in sheer bliss... and we get on with the day.
After that little hiccup, we made our way to PriceSmart. Our guests called us when they arrived in the parking lot. We met them, had a bit of a chat and then they followed us home. We had a delightful evening, exchanging stories. They're both English, but lived in Australia and now in Saudi Arabia and they've done quite a bit of travelling. They're here for a month to travel around Costa Rica. We can't wait to hear what they think of Costa Rica when they're done touring.
Although our day started out a bit frustrating, it seems so long ago now... the rest of the day and evening made up for it in spades.
Receive our blog
in your email inbox!
Dave and Krista are a couple from the Pacific Northwest that led overwhelmingly busy lives.
Click here to pick up your copy of Anne's book! It's all about their adventure and the establishment of Hush Valley Lodge: from leaving their middle-class suburban lifestyle in Canada to reinventing themselvess in the beautiful mountains of Costa Rica. Check it out and if you enjoy it, please spread the word! Thanks!