What can we say about San Jose? To be 100% honest, not much. The city itself is not what we’d call one of the better places we’ve visited. There is nothing to see or do, and any semblance of tourist attractions are weathered, and not worthwhile. Safety is definitely an issue, as are drugs, which really is the case with all major cities in the world, but this stood out to us. Maybe it was because we felt unsafe in the middle of the day, or maybe it was because people actually seem to watch you.
The highlight of our 2 day stopover really became the family we stayed with in yet another Airbnb adventure. Karol, the matriarch of the house, and our host, welcomed us into her home as if we were long lost relatives. Her husband, daughter, father and family friends did much the same. They shared family photos, stories and life advice with us. They graciously shared meals with us, made us coffee and snacks, and gathered around to enjoy our company when we were preparing meals, or just generally hanging out. They gave us gifts, and hugs, and wished us to be safe in our travels. They offered to drive us around town or sights, and even drove us to the bus station half an hour away when we were leaving. It was awe inspiring. The generosity, genuine care, and the way they truly wanted to share their lives with us...you just don’t get that everywhere you go. Don’t get me wrong, generally speaking we have had very good experiences dealing with people, especially our hosts, but this was something else. Something special.
To top it all off, the house is home to two doggos! One was a golden retriever puppy and the other a mixed dog no older than 2. We love animals very much, and it was the cherry on the sundae to spend time with these two munchkins. Travelling should always be a way to learn about different cultures, and to make connections; with people, with animals, and with nature. For us, San Jose was truly worth visiting as there is no better way to learn about someone’s culture than to experience it in their home. Thank you Costa Rica for showing us Pura Vida isn’t just a marketing catch phrase, but truly, a way of life.