Saturday, October 15, 2005

U.S. vs Costa Rica Soccer

Well last Saturday was the infamous soccer game. If you are not a soccer fan (neither was I till I moved here) you may not have been aware that there was some sort of playoff game between these two teams. US already was in, but Costa Rica needed to win to get into the World Cup finals. Well US sent their B team and they played like crap. I don't even know much about soccer but I could tell that the Costa Rican team looked way better.

But what is more interesting to me than the game was the after game mayhem. I'm talking serious chaos. Ok here is the run down. In San Pedro there is this major round about (big highway intersection without lights). In the middle of this round about is a fountain. A friend who has lived for a while here thinks what's weird about Costa Ricans are that they are proud of this fountain, which is just an extension of a public works water infrastructure. Costa Ricans are proud of their infrastructure. And right in front is Mall San Pedro which has a view of the round about.

Well, whenever there is a major Costa Rican win everybody storms the fountain and the round aboutwaving flags, screaming, singing and just having a good time in a sort of anarchic and chaotic fashion. One picture turned out! Notice the police men guarding the fountain on the left, no way in hell they were going to let the people into the fountain, but they couldn't keep them out of the round about nor did they care when they started shaking and rocking a car. I thought the revelers were going to flip it, until they remembered they were nice Ticos, backed away from the car very friendly like singing and clapping and let the car go through. The other funny part was that a big group of kids would just start running around the round about with flags and drums and than turn around and run back the other way. Nothing better than beating the gringos! Nobody seemed to remember that it was the B-team and Wednesday night Costa Rica just got slammed cause they were playing their B-team against Guatamela.

I really should not have walked up to this area especially at night. My neighbor tells me he's been held up by gun point six times in the last six years. But, I wanted to experience a Costa Rican phenomenon. Unfortunately though I will avoid walking alone at night in the future, but this was worth it.

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