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Archive for 2008

Costa Rica Bus Travel Safety Tip #1 Dec 29

Costa Rica has an amazing bus network that allows you to travel the country coast to coast for under $30. The bus system here is privately owned and each particular transit point is usually a seperate company. 

Despite the private ownership, they generally coordinate their schedules so if you arrive Libreria at 2pm from SJO, there ususally is a bus that will be ready to leave within the hour to your final destination. I will post an online bus schedule with the next few weeks so everyone will have an updated list.

While the the bus network is amazing, it is still used by the general population.  Usually each route has its daily passengers who are familiar with the driver and the other passengers as they travel to and from their destinations. Most of the people are friendly and generally leave you alone or will help you if you ask them questions. But there are passengers who use the bus to prey on tourists and other new passengers who are not familiar with the route. more…

Surfer Profile: Bobby Martinez Dec 25

bobby-martinez-asp-pro-surferProfessional surfer Bobby Martinez, 26, has his feet grounded in reality. Bobby, a Mexican-American, grew up and still lives in Santa Barbara, California, while it is not as brutal as Watts, CA the streets still keep you “real.” During his freshman year on the tour he was donned the “gangsta surfer” because of his tatoos and his choice of music. But Bobby is no gangster, he is a blue collar type who believes in hard work, honesty and humility.

While his friends were working or getting into trouble, Bobby hit the beaches to surf and this was his way off of the streets and into the international spotlight of pro surfers. Being one of the best in the world take hard work, practice and sacrifice. Which is why he takes exception to the likes of Kelly Slater since he does not believe in celebrity. He surfs because it is in his blood, just like it is for most surfers. Surfing is not a way out of the ghetto. “I think that where I come from definitely helps keep me humble,” Martinez says.

To further explain how grounded he is here is an excerpt from an interview in July 2007 Surfer Mag “We’re not famous, man,” he says. “This little world of ours, the surf world, it’s so tiny that it doesn’t really matter. No surfer is a “real celebrity.” more…

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Surf Spots for long board waves near Jaco, Costa Rica Dec 21

If you are a beginner and you are using a long board then Jaco and Playa Hermosa will offer you many waves depending on swell conditions. Even for those who choose long boards Playa Hermosa and Playa Jaco will satisfy you.

Another location which is becoming more popular these days is Boca Barranca where there is a very long left out by the river mouth. Reported that waves can be 3-10 feet when there is a southern swell. It is about an hour drive north from Jaco about 3 miles before Puntarenas when driving. If you plan on driving from Jaco be sure to ask for directions how to get there from Jaco because the route would be different if you are coming from San Jose or Guanacaste.

Also located a few kilometers south of Boca Barranca is Puerto Caldera, also said to have a very good, well shaped left. The surfing gets better when the tide is coming in.

If you choose to stay in this area instead of coming back to Jaco, there are plenty of option in Barranca to stay for the night. But you should be able to make it back since the best waves are around 5 AM, so maybe you would want to come the night before and check out the tide.

For a more complete report of Costa Rican Surf Spots for long boards, check back next week for my chat with Diego Naranjo who is the Costa Rican Long Board Champion and holder of many other titles.

If you have any questions please leave a comment and I will be sure to answer.

Pura Vida

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Witch’s Rock Joe Walsh rambles Dec 21

I still love loud music, especially punk, probably because I grew up watching Taylor Steele surf videos. Pennywise, Bad Religion and Unwritten Law were great back then. Now I’m finding myself listening to the Hives, Rocket from the Crypt and Iggy Pop among other bands. I’m also stoked on Sufjan Stevens and Andrew Bird when I want to slow it down a bit, just not the last couple of days…

If Costa Rica had better programming on Direct TV I wouldn’t just play classic rock in the restaurant like I do. They used to have an awesome reggae channel that was overtaken by show tunes. Ugh. Internet radio would be great, but the internet here in CR can suck and is overall unreliable in town. At least exists and the internet has been working well lately. more…

Kelly Slater says “terrorism…is overrated…” Dec 13

Surf sensation and 9 time ASP World Champion Kelly Slater gets slammed from readers regarding his comments during an interview with Jon Coen on EXPN. The interview took place on November 19th, 2008 in NYC so apologies for the belated entry. It was the readers comments fromkelly-slater-expn-interview-with-john-coen theinterview that alerted me to this post. I also assume that most of the readers are surfers because not to many people outside of surfing know who Kelly Slater is, even when he is announced to be in a relationship with Cameron Diaz. Most people respond by saying “Kelly it a girl or guy? Even ESPN the goliath of sports news and owner of the EXPN site which posted the interview acknowledges through it’s own actions that Kelly Slater is not mainstream enough to publish an article solely on his persona.

An ESPN writer flew out to conduct an interview, spent 2-3 days with him but when the editors cut it up, the focus was on his break up with Pamela Anderson not on his surfing achievments. Only surfers can appreciate this aspect of Kelly Slater and from the comments readers posted the majority seem to agree that Kelly should stick to talking about surfing rather than engaging in opinion. kelly-slater-says-terrorism-is-overrated During the interview, Kelly says “Terrorism is a played-out, overrated threat considering that terrorism, world-wide, might kill thousands of people a year, while cardiovascular disease kills 15 million and cancer kills, like, 12 million. Those are bigger issues in my eyes.” This comment prompted an onslaught of slams by surfers who chided that Kelly is out of touch and doesn’t understand the issues. One surfer comments, if Kelly lost his father along with thousands of other lives in the 9/11 attacks he would not be so nonchalant about terrorism being “played-out” or less important. Perhaps his cozey world of swells and beachfront locations distorts his reality. more…

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