question of '09: to crashpad or not to crashpad

So, what do I do? Come this February, the Loxford Lounge / Farm House will end a 2 year lease agreement and all seven of us have already made plans to move out. Well, at least 4 of us have a housing situation already in the works, but that leaves me with the questions of paying rent for an apartment / room in Atlanta or just commuting in and out and maybe using a hotel every now and then. If you take my current situation into account, I pay ~$120 for a loft space per month but then in February, that will most likely end up being ~$300 or more for a room with two other great guys. Of course, that just negated the mediocre pay increase that I will be getting and the fact that I'm hardly here utilizing my living quarters just irritates me. In the month of November, I think that I was in the loft a total of 3-4 times. So with a hotel near the airport at around $50 a night, I'm still doing better with the loft, but then when the rent increases to an amount > $300, it'll take about 6 night stays to make it worthwhile. Do you get it?

Granted the loads on mainline Delta have really taken a dive and sometimes going from San Diego to Atlanta every week can get tiring, but it always ends up working out anyways. So, with this big decision, I have to come to terms with my belongings that I have in Atlanta on whether or not to spend the extra cash to move everything home to San Diego in one big crate, or piece by piece, etc. Obviously if I stay in Atlanta and have a place of residence, then I can keep some of my stuff here and just postpone the inevitable move back to San Diego, but who knows. I have a feeling that I might end up here at ASA a little while longer so I might as well get use to Atlanta? I have no frigging clue. It basically winds down to the want that I have to find a place that is relatively inexpensive to where it'll be less than what I would spend a month on a hotel in Atlanta and still be with people i know. I also want to have the option to actually "live" there for 2-3 days in a row just incase I decided not to fly to San Diego or the mere fact that I might not be able to get on due to full capacity.

This also brings up the other fact that now since I sold the old turbo diesel in San Diego, I am without transportation and am contemplating whether or not I need a car in Atlanta? I have one here, but it doesn't get use that often and the last time I left it alone for more than 11 days, the battery died on me. What the heck people!?

Costa Rica Day 2 and 3 (part 2)

DSC05098 Day 2 included walking around flooded streets while attempting to find some breakfast.  Strolling into a hotel opposite of ours, we enjoyed a typical American breakfast only because the waitress told us that the Tico breakfast wasn't that great.  Even though I asked for fried eggs, I guess Costa Ricans interpret them as sunny side up.  I'll take that for the road next time I order to ask for fried all the way.  

DSC05099The entire day continued to drench us and there would be no end in site.  We decided after hearing that there was a chance of bridge closures to forgo staying the night in Coco Bay and head back to Liberia via autobus.  We ended up hitching a ride back to the city with Jose and bought him and his son some lunch as thanks.  He then took us to a couple of different hotels but without getting any deals, we paid $52 USD for a crappy room with no A/C.  Not that we needed the A/C, the only upside was that it was near the locale. 

More pictures after the jump!

DSC05108DSC05111While we scoured for cover underneath various awnings, Matt and I toured a church, walked around various shops and ran into a crazy looking mannequin.  So, of course Matt had to take a picture of it. Strolling around the grocery store, we took another picture of a fridge full of Imperial Beer and then walked around a little more where we entered a local high end bar (we had no idea) and retired there the rest of the night. 

DSC05112We met a guy named Otto who originated from Costa Rica but lived in the US for the past 10 years and he was nice enough to hang.  He told us a couple of stories, drove us to the other club which was a bust, drove us back to where we met, which ended up closing and then took us back to our hotel. 

That was it really, we woke up two hours early due to our phones not being calibrated to the local time zone, had some breakfast (still then eggs were over easy) and got conned into taking a cab to the airport.  You see, the cab driver initially charged us $20 USD for a 10km ride, but when we started walking away, he started up his taxi and came riding over to us.  He lowered his price to $15 and when we told him that we were going to talk to the bus station, he told us a lie that the bus doesn't take us directly to the airport.  That was a bust!  We found out later that there are buses to the airport from a security guard who chatted us up a bit.  I bought some coffee and a couple of souvenirs from the duty free shop (expensive as heck) and then we boarded up and took off.  The plane ended up full so we got coach seating but it wasn't too bad. 

After all the rain that came down during the trip, at least we learned quite a bit so that our next trip to Costa Rica will be that much better!

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Tropical Depression #13 vs. Costa Rica (part 1)

Looks like Matty P and I got the best of the rain during our 3 day excursion to Liberia, Costa Rica.  Arriving Tuesday early afternoon, sitting in Delta's First Class, we met up with what would have been our tour guide had the weather worked out the next day, Jose Avispas.  Avispas Adventures was highly recommended by my captain and after doing a little bit of random internet research, we knew that they would be a perfect choice for our quick trip.  It was easy working with the company and they came and picked us up as promised even on short notice.  They dropped us off at a hotel in Hermosa Beach, taking care of all the reservations, called Villa Huetares that they recommended costing us $45.00 USD /night w/o extras.  They did have WIFI using a long WEP key, two computers that were open for use, clean rooms but because of the timing, the villa looked like a ghost town.  The website shows a couple of pictures of the place it definitely shows off the best of what they have.  It wasn't a 2 or 3 star place, but it was a cheap place and "better" than a Hostel. 

DSC05066 It wasn't looking good for us at the time due to the torrential down pour, but it cleared up after a bit so Matt and I decided to head to the beach.  We met a local fisherman selling us a boat trip and with little haggling, we got a 3 hour trip for $120 ($100 + $20 tip).  Included was the boat, fishing poles, a crew of three (don't know why) and the guarantee that we would have a great time "fishing."  We caught two bait fish and hung out for a bit, but ended up with nothing.  The view was great, the boat ride gave us great views of the coastline including the all inclusive Four Seasons Resort, and I would have to to admit that it ended up being worth it.  Albeit disappointing with no catch and a couple of nibbles, but hey, it's fishing and we were in Costa Rica!.  Little did Matt and I know that it be the last tourist thing we would do. 

Click for more!

That night, our tour local guy recommended that we eat at a local bar where we ordered Garlic Buttered Grilled Fish.  It was definitely a great eat.  I should have taken a picture of the plate but by that time, 1900 local, we hadn't eaten since the plane ride.  Hoping tomorrow would bring up better prospects, we decided to take advantage of the night as it cleared up and head out to Coco Beach. 

After arriving and searching around Coco Beach, we came to the conclusion that it was definitely a better place to stay so we asked around a bit on the going rate.  Coco Bay hotel was going to charge us $80 USD /night where as the hostel was around $15 USD.  We found a bar with some expats who offered us tourist advice and sat down.  We had quite a few beers, met some random locals, became friends with the bar tender (relocated from Gulfport, MI) and the cashier who chatted us us. 


Being a Tuesday night during the off-season along with the rain, no one was touring the area except for the few hookers and guys hanging about.  Definitely not the right time to come, but who would have known?  

Getting a ride back was easy after the local guy we were hanging out with called us a cab and back we went with no plans for the next day except to have some breakfast back at the restaurant where we had the awesome fish!