Also my very poor (read that as non-existent) Spanish would impede my ability to travel from Mexico to Panama .... if I wanted to find a room, book a bus ticket or eat that is.
The six week tour I was on can be broken up into 3 x 2 week trips so I've had a few travel buddies with me since Playa, with others coming and going.
All was going well ... I'd met some amazing people and made some good friends. The basics trips with intrepid are usually made up of like minded people who often travel independently and like to have a bit of fun.
Then we picked up a few new people in San Jose.
A very random, mumbling anti-social mid 50s woman joined Vic and I in our room. I thought she was odd but tried to chat to make her feel welcome. My attempts were unsuccessful, but I thought whatevs.
During the night she had a bit of a screaming fit then early the next morning was mumbling 'don't throw me in the river' when Vic turned the shower on. I had a bit of a giggle but didn't think too much of it. I was also just a little bit disturbed by the aroma she was emitting but she didn't see the need to shower so who am I to judge.
We headed to the station and boarded the 6am bus bound for Puerto Viejo. Just my luck, I had to sit next to the unwashed one. I pulled out my iPod and settled in for the 4.5 hour trip, trying desperately not to breathe through my nose. At close range she smelt like a homeless, very unwashed wino .... kinda like the dudes living on the streets around my old neighborhood of Kings Cross.
All was going as well as could be expected when I noticed she was had started sipping out of a cask of wine .... then she started skulling loads of booze. At this stage it wasn't yet 8am.
Picture it .... it is really, really humid, the road is windy and the great unwashed one has turned into a mountain of jelly. Every time we went round a corner she ended up nearly on top of me. I was slightly disturbed.
We finally arrived in the amazing beachside town of Puerto Viejo and I scrambled off the bus. I thought the drama was over .... but the best was yet to come.
The great unwashed one was so drunk ... her eyes were glazed and rolling around in her head and she had trouble standing. She stumbled down the steps of the bus, pushed through everyone then toppled over as she tried to get her bag. She then stood in the path of a moving vehicle before being rescued by our group leader.
We headed down the sandy road to our accomm. We'd gone about 2 minutes when she bit the dust. Sprawled on the road she was helpless. She was so pissed she was a rag doll ... poor Mong had to use all her energy to try and get her on her feet.
I kept having a giggle .... well you need to keep your sense of humour or life would be very sad.
We got to the hotel and the great unwashed one fell into a chair, rolled her eyes and promptly went to sleep.
The bonus was she was in her own room ... there's no way I'll be bunking down with her again.
The last I saw of her she was walking around the hotel in her flowing leopard nightwear wearing a headlight on her head!?!
It is very sad really. I only hope she can pull herself together and she doesn't injure herself ... or one of us for that matter.
OMG the next two weeks are going to be interesting!
Update ... It's the next morning as I'm writing this post. She's been out for a walk. Mmmmm, seems she found the liquor store. Oh dear, she's now the proud owner of another stash of wine casks.
Please note: The people in the photos above are generally normal or only slightly crazy and are only found drinking at 6am if they haven't been to bed yet. There is no photographic evidence of the great unwashed in action as this would be uncharitable.