Day 26 (509 Km) and Day 27 (390 Km)
Left the Hotel By the Panama airport @ 8 for the long haul to David, about 500km away and soon hit the first toll booth to get to Panama city and saw before I entered, I had to pay $ 1.20. Up to my surprise the girl told me, that I had to buy first a rechargeable card for $ 10.00, because they cannot accept cash anymore! I refused to pay the $ 10.00 and soon I had 100 cars behind me and I still refused to pay, I told her take the $ 1.20, she still refused and I asked Scotty, if he could bypass the tollbooth, without hitting the boom, he nodded and told him lets go. Told the girl “Kiss my as#” and we took off, only to get confronted 20 minutes later with another toll booth, had another little stand off about the same thing and soon bypassed this toll booth also, leaving everyone behind us in disbelieve! Having done this road about 4 times now in the last 3 years, we knew every few miles a motor police man, is hiding behind a tree to give motorists fines for speeding in their classic set up, reducing the speed limit from 100km to 40 km in the middle of nowhere, but this time, I smiled and waved to al of theml, when I passed them and around 5 pm we reached David. Half the people, I asked directions for the centre of town, didn’t know where the center is and not long after that, I decided to go towards the border and soon we saw a hotel on the side of the road and checked in , left the bikes packed in front of the room.
Next morning, an half an hour later we reached the zoo of Paso Canoas in 40 C and of all the border crossings in the world, this is the most grueling, time consuming one , but having this border done a few times already, I started in good spirit. The Panamanian side was not too bad eventhou they made a big deal about, to see our yellow fever cards, because they noticed, we been to Peru and Ecuador according the stamps in our passport. I told the guy, you should have asked me when I entered Panama, not when I am leaving….., so he got pissed off. Then the sniffing dogs of their narcotic team, did not wanted to get up and sniff our bags for about 15 minutes and finally after a stamp here and there , they let us go to the Costa Rica side and I knew here all the crap will start , because they want from everything a photo copy and like to send you around to 10 different places and on the end you have to go back again to collect stamps. You would say having everything computerized in Costa Rica and considered the most advanced of all Central America, they should not have all this red tape, but they must have hired the most ignorant, incompetent people they could find to fill these positions to do this useless job and you could see none of them really wanted to work, especially on a Saturday ( Must be Political) . Anyway, on the end the clerk was so upset, felt intimidated and even crying, after I told her in a “friendly “ way, what I thought about her work ethics, that we had to use Scotty as an intermediater between the two of us to process my papers and it was a good thing Costa Rica is one hour earlier as Panama, so we left this border around 10:30 am Costa Rica time. I must have lost 10 pounds of sweating in the last 3 hours intense heat and abnormal temperatures and my clothes were soaked, nowhere on this whole border, there was an A/C or fan to get any relieve and there was no breeze as well! So 10 minutes later we stopped by a roadside bar to get some cold drinks and some crackhead wanted money for watching our bikes while we got our drinks and we were only sitting 10 ft away from the bikes and we were the only customers in the place. Actually we were watching him, so he did not steal anything! After an half an hour, when we were leaving, he demanded money and I gave him 2 bitchlicks and that solved his problem for the day. Sofar this day, I made no new friends yet!
On the narrow badly paved road, I saw a sign that San Jose was 350 km away and we decided to go there through the mountains to get out of this heat and 2 hours later we were @ 3300 meters and it was actually chilly, but the road was magnificent with very nice curves and vistas. Around 5 pm, we reached Carthago , a city with at least with 100000 people, but has no hotels and an hour later we decided to go to San Jose and reached there almost in dark, found an hostal and after 12 hours on the road, I was tired!