Our original shimmering self gets buried so deep we hardly live out of it at all...rather, we learn to live out of all the other selves which we are constantly putting on and taking off like coats and hats against the world's weather. – Frederick Buechner
Waking up at 6:30am, a few of us are prepared to travel to Costa Rica on the busiest travel day for all of Central America. Just after 7am the taxi has arrived and the four of us pile our bags in the trunk and squeeze in for the 20-minute ride to the border. Hoping that by arriving before 7:30am we would beat the rush, it was quite the opposite. Walking up to the immigration office to receive our exit stamp from Nicaragua there was a line that wrapped almost twice around the building and we were told it was over a 2-hour wait. As we stood there in shock debating what to do, a local approached us and told us for $30 each he would put us to the front of the line. After haggling we agreed to $10 each since I knew that we still had to wait in line to enter Costa Rica and it would be more than six hours to San Jose and time was not on our side. I’ve heard horror stories of people waiting more than eight hours at Penas Blancas and knew that this was a possibility if we weren’t willing to pay. Even after using a bribe to get us out of Nicaragua we still waited more than two hours to enter Costa Rica. This was supposed to be the beginning of my three-day weekend from all the madness of Christmas and New Years at the hostel where we were completely full for almost two weeks.