I think I have been pretty spoiled with the friends I have and the people I’ve met. During my semester abroad, I met the only other Canadian girl in my dorm and we hit it off immediately. We bonded over our shared passport and alcohol. Yes, that first night you get drunk in another country will probably end badly. After pre-drinks, a night of Karaoke at an Italian bar and a walk back to the dorm, it ended with me puking over my new friend’s second-floor balcony, directly in front of the door of the downstairs’ neighbour. Ahhh memories.
Anyways, she and I got along great. We travelled so well together. I found flights. She booked hostels/hotels. I found interesting things to see and do. She found places to eat and explore. We took walking tours together. We went to museums. We ate. We drank. We agreed on everything. We never went after the same boys. We employed the buddy system at all times. (Essentially – you jump, I jump. I want to go, we go.) Whenever we were hungry, we just said, yo, I need to eat.
She was and remains my favorite travel partner. Sadly, unfortunately and heartbreakingly, we are no longer friends.
The point is, I was spoiled with her. And so I thought, travelling with new friends, I would find the same rhythm. No. Being friends with someone and travelling with someone are two completely different things. Want to find out if your friendship is made to last? Hop on a plane.
I had wanted to go to Costa Rica for years, ever since I wrote a paper on its sustainable economic policies, as well as a myriad other reasons. So when my relatively new friend was down to go, we decided to plan a backpacking trip to Costa Rica.
There are many different types of travellers. You can find a bunch of articles on the internet about this. I am not comfortable with detailing each kind, because I don’t think you can. In my case, I am more of a general-idea, no-need-for-details, explore what you can and take advice from fellow travellers.
It’s how we ended up in Montezuma, which turned out to be one of my favorite beach towns. My friend was not exactly that type. She wanted plans and hostel bookings. In the end, we agreed to plan half the trip in advance and figure out the rest. Compromise!
Look, Costa Rica is so beautiful and I met so many lovely people that this trip ended up not being so bad. In fact, those people are the reason I went to Nicaragua after hearing so much about it. But after my trip to Nicaragua, the absolute freedom of being on my own and not worrying about buddy systems or credit cards not working (my one piece of advice? ALWAYS CALL YOUR BANK) made me wish I could go back and re-do Costa Rica on my own. But then maybe I wouldn’t have fallen in love in and with Monteverde. And maybe I wouldn’t have met the four French guys we kept bumping into around the country. And maybe I wouldn’t have hung out with Julia.
In the end, each trip happens for a reason. And they reveal a few things about yourself. And you find out (oh god, this sounds sappy and corny) who your real friends are. Onwards and upwards. Time to write about my trip to Costa Rica while I can still remember some details!