Cóbano turns out to be a cute, small, seemingly cliquey town with mangoes lying on the sides of the (very few) roads and birds singing constantly. I get really comfortable the minute I cool down from all the emotions and with a sunset already at 6.30pm, we take a ‘night’ walk.
Now, you see, I lived in India for two years, but it already seems so long ago. I almost forgot how it is to lock myself in a non-ventilated bathroom and have a wave of heat sweat up your whole body; step just next to a frog ; and have ants and mosquitoes everywhere. It feels homey, it feels like India all over again (only way cleaner). The night is uneasy, hot, sweaty, and very long. I wake up dizzy with a running nose. Allergies? I forget all about them once I smell fresh pancakes. This IS paradise.
Besides: afternoon=beach! Even though I arrive at the bus stop on time, I have to wait half an hour before the Montezuma directed van lazily rolls up on the street. ‘Oh, good to see you here. I was afraid you’d give up after 15mins.’ – says Heske, who was supposed to get on at another bus stop. You see now, THAT was traveler’s luck. If not for the bus being so late, she would not have walked to my bus stop, and I would probably end up in Montezuma alone. The bus turned out to take some unusual route and did not even pass the stop she was supposed to be waiting at.
We start off with a short hike towards the waterfalls – in flip-flops, skirts, and with handbags. What amateurs! The swim, though, is amazingly refreshing and unbelievably picturesque. ‘What a paradise’, I think to myself again. Montezuma, though touristy, has surprisingly few people. The beach still unveils few shirtless visitors, a ‘green’ smell and two blonde girls deciding to dive into the wild ocean. The water is not only extremely salty (oh yea, how unexpected), but the waves keep pushing us down, and the sand swirls angrily with foam. So there: we get our dip and realize it’s high time to leave. The only thing left is to make sure we’re going out of the water with the same amount of clothing pieces as we entered in – even though the sand grains and little shells desperately want to leave with us as they’re hiding under every string of the bikini that’s still tide on.
Since we are 10mins late for the 4 o’clock bus (why wasn’t this one late?!), a walk on the shore seems like a great idea. We pass a few surfers, postcard–like landscapes, and let the little fresh springs and waves wash over our feet from time to time. It is such a paradise.
Later, because Heske is practically a local, we get some handy money-maker to give us a ride home under a cloudy sky, forgetting all about buses. ‘Un dolar a Cóbano’ and we hop in. Few minutes after we reach the house, it starts raining cats and dogs. Traveler’s luck, I say.
Fiona, May 16th ’11