Saturday, 1 November 2008

... Central America: The Wonder that is Wanderlust

Just three more sleeps! Three more sleeps until I board my flight bound for Costa Rica and embark on this year's 'Big trip' through Central America.

Am I excited yet? Hmm... let's think about that one for a minute. It's been a pretty busy week all told what with work & the usual craziness there, then Madonna rocked 55000 people's world including my very own and I'm going diving at Porteau Cove tomorrow. BUT I am kind of thinking that the fact I have stayed awake nearly all night every night since I worked my last nightshift might just be an indication that 'too bloody right I'm excited'. Just a little.

Unfortunately for me when I get this way I tend to kind of lose my a-type-ness! Contain your shock & horror at that quote which you now all have in writing. That is to say I tend to become a little blasé and leave stuff until the last bloody minute. I love it and hate it at the same time. So today I FINALLY got off my backside and headed out to do all those last minute pre-trip things that I really really needed to do and am sitting here now thinking 'Why didn't I do this a week ago?'.

Vancouver Boullion & Currency Exchange on Granville is where I go to get my moolah for any of my travels. This is the best place to go for all your currency needs as not only can they get you all the exotic stuff but they have never charged me a single penny for doing so! I'm taking US$ - apparently that is the easiest way to travel through Central America. I met a few problems. The first being my dumb debit limit per day so that took a 15 minute phone call to the bank (most of it spent on hold) to get my limit raised - I find this a little stupid when I obviously have to have the $ in my account anyway. By the time they ran the transaction through again the Loonie was doing worse against the good ol' Greenback and so I had to pay more money than they quoted me 15 minutes earlier! Then I had asked for as lowest denominations possible... since when have $50 & $100 bills been low?  In Central America you can have a really hard time getting your money accepted if your notes are old & battered so I basically have to suck it up.

Wanderlust on West 4th is an amazing store. It carries 1000's of travel books & maps and is a great place to go for travel accessories. I went there to get a money belt and some Mosquito repellent and wasn't quite prepared for what greeted my eyes....

Introducing in glorious technicolour P-Mate & undies that you can apparently wear 'in 17 Countries for 6 weeks'.  The latter is actually a pretty good idea, they're  just marketed very badly. It's not that you wear the same undies for that period of time *snicker*, they're microfibre so you can wash them every night and they dry super quickly. The former?!? Oh my God... did any of you know these things existed? I was laughing so hard that I almost needed to buy one incase I wet myself in the middle of the store. $110 later I left with my goodies minus the P-Mate... I swear!

Who knew that Pre-trip preparation would be so entertaining?

Just three more sleeps...

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