I was sitting on the sand alone at Playa Jaco bemoaning my luck with my 7’2 surfboard I rented in a weak moment of feeling better last night (hey! Good news- the fever passed. All I am left with is a bit of a stomach ache. OK, not an ache- a nausea that seems to be quelled by 2-3 peptobismol chewing tablets every 2-3 hours. I am almost out, but there is a 'Famacia' down the road to try tomorrow morning. Mum's advice- might be a 24 hour bug, drink lots of water, wear clothes to bed you can sweat in, and don't tell the world on your blog you feel unwell! Because everyone panics... like me. Me = panic... for a short time. Once I convinced myself I wasn't dying of Swine Flu I felt a lot better. The man at the place I am staying who said I was pale told me it was "just the water"- longests bracket ever.) thinking I might feel better today to use it.

After many hours of sleep and lying around the hotel in the am, I decided to wax up and head out. I spent my first hour or so ass over tea kettle over board, in the ungraceful way only a novice can really do. Sitting alone, feeling a slow stream of water trickle out of my ear I am approached by a Tiko wearing a 'Jaco Surf School' tee.

Gustpov: Hey, I see you struggle in the water.

Me (in my head): GEE IS IT THAT OBVIOUS. (Out loud, laughs) Yes, a bit.

G: You are all arms and legs. I can help you. I used to be the Costa Rica national champ, 88-97. (Pulls out card). Where you from? (Tricky Tiko manuever to keep you talking).

Me: Calgary- no waves where I come from. Help how?

G: I am teaching a few girls surf right now. Come with!

SO... still feeling slightly ill but never one to turn down a 5,000 Colones surf lesson with an ex-national champ, (roughtly $10) I hop over to a little tent and listen to Gustpov's speal. We pracitce on dryland (I learn the "4" mount technique, my surfing friends out there) and head to the water. Viola... like magic. His technique made all the difference. I spend the rest of the afternoon playing in the water, not sucking back salt and praying my surfboard won't cut open another oriffice of my body.

We finish the surf pre-sunset (which is good because I now need another pepto, asap) and the surf camp boys are hanging around. I can't stay long because my stomach is doing an angry dance, but I did stay long enough to get insulted/ complimented.

RANDOM SURF TIKO: Where you from?

Me: Calgary. No surf there.

RST: You look strong.

Me: Er, thanks.

RST: You look like (turns to friend and speaks in long streams of flowing spanish) a house.

Me: A house? (in brain: Oh God.)

RST: (Laugh) No! I wrong. Like House of Shit

Me: House of shit?

RST: Er... (more rapid spanish to friend) House of Shit Bricks!

Me: Um... do you mean... Brick Shit House?

RST: (Spanish to friends, all laugh at my expense) Si si si mi amor! BRICK SHIT HOUSE!

And here I was, playing Lost In Tiko Translation when I *think* I was getting complimented.

Thanks all from Jaco now folks, my 1,000 colones time is coming to a close and my stomach needs pepto, ASAP. HH aka, THE BRICK SHIT HOUSE