Today I had some free time so I thought I would go for a walk with Bernard my dog through the back streets of Santa Ana, Costa Rica. I have been downtown to places like Amigos, Old West, and several little shops.
But I have to say my walk today was much more interesting on the back streets. Walking out of our mega-plex of apartments into the normal streets is a contrast not easily explained. Most of the houses or boarded with old couches in front. Almost every house had people sitting out front and dogs barking as you walk by. I felt like there was a class war amongst dogs that had houses that where fenced in and the street dogs that where dirty trying to find food. To my surprise the street digs where very nice and played with Bernard. Where the house dogs where much more mean. I think the house dogs where mean because they cannot roam when the street dogs are walking by several times a day. But the sad truth is there is very little respect for dogs here and street dogs get killed often by cars.
About two blocks up I found a fence with bent barbwire and trampled grass. I was worried about it being private property but it seems used recently so I thought I would try. After twisting down this little path of mud and some garbage I was dropped into a creek that more then stunning, hollow trees, butterflies, you can tell at one point this little creek was something special but now had beer cans, old clothes, and garbage lining it. In fact I noticed in general the people of Costa Rica who have the little carbon footprints per capita LITTER like crazy.
I mean there is garbage everywhere.
But with a little imagination you can appreciate the natural beauty of what was one here before the houses where built.
As I walked further up I passed several farms where the horses, bulls, and cows, where right on the thin beaten fences. I picked up Bernard to show him the bull and in a friendly way he bucks his hooves. Of course Bernard flipped out (he is a little high strung) and started barking but soon realized the bull was no threat and was ready to move on.
A little further up I noticed many of the houses has little businesses in the front. Like Soda stores, bike shops, even tire shops. The ringer would ring through the house and the resident would come fourth to the business store front.
After about 20 minutes I noticed Bernard was tired and wanted to rest. So I grabbed some aqua and found a shady tree to parch under. But not a minute later Bernard and I noticed tons of ants and had to keep going. I have to say there is a ants everywhere in Costa Rica and very big ones at that. The first 4 days I was here I walked about two hours a day just venturing. And one thing I noticed more then anything was the ants. You have to wonder a little what is underneath the ground. I assume a massive network of Anthills and caves working together to try and feed billions of ants daily.
After about 30 minutes and mucho smiles from the locals I decided to head back. Bernard was very happy with this decision. We stopped by a couple new shaded spots on the way to get out of the sun but shortly made it back in one piece.