I think we can all agree that 5:00am is too early for just about anything.
Our long, arduous journey from the northwest side to the southeast side of Costa Rica began on a Thursday morning at 5:00am. Actually, it began at 4:10am when I forced my feet on the floor, but at 5:00am, Eli and I were settled onto an air conditioned bus headed directo for San Jose. The bus was quiet despite its fullness, with all riders in silent, mutual agreement that it was time to go back to sleep for a couple hours.
In the two seats in front of us sat a middle-aged woman, a woman in her 20’s, and a toddler: presumably three generations. Toddler was a little fussy but relatively well behaved, equipped with huge brown eyes and a head of dark, tight curls that made it hard to be mad at her for much. At 7:00am, we stopped at a rest stop for coffee and a bite to eat. Getting back on the bus after the break, everyone seemed more alert, toddler included. Grandma moved to a different seat, so mom and toddler had more space. With a couple hours yet to go until San Jose, toddler stood up in her seat and faced us while mom changed her diaper. We smiled at her and waved, attempting to get a smile back from her, but her expression and gaze were unwavering.
After a few minutes of this, I felt a cool splash of something on my foot. Before I knew what it was, Eli jerked, grabbed his bag from the floor, and said, “Oh my god, she’s peeing.” I followed suit, but only after my foot and sandal were doused in toddler piss and a small puddle pooled on the floor at our feet. Mom did not seem to notice. Overcome with surprise and disgust, a moment of stunned silence was followed by laughing through a series of what-just-happened’s and are-you-kidding-me‘s and I-wish-I’d-brought-wet-wipe‘s.
The rest of the trip to San Jose was uneventful, peppered only with the occasional wave of nausea and the scent of piss wafting through the stale bus air. We arrived at 9:00am, thus beginning phase two of the Puerto Viejo travels.
I think it’s important to note that the child’s stone cold stare did not falter whilst peeing. Psychopath?