The sun shines brightly over the river Charente, the marketing is done and the groceries are put away. Time to sit back and tell you a little story about the generous spirit of the Ticos, the people of Costa Rica.
On one of our last evenings in Atenas, we went for dinner to the Restaurante Pescatore in Escazú, a western suburb of the capital city San José. The Pescatore offers a unique blend of Peruvian and Mediterranean cuisine with a heavy emphasis on seafood, especially cebiches, scallops, and pulpo, or octopus, often paired with risottos. Although we enjoyed dining at the Pescatore very much – their tuna cebiche in maracuyá marinade is unmatched! – we didn’t go there all that often because it is, understandably, rather expensive.
Nevertheless, when we returned after nearly two years, our waiter addressed us by name, remembered “our” table and even recalled some of our choices from our last visit. We, on the other hand, needed prompting to remember his name, Oscar. In Costa Rica, Barry was known as El Bigote Grande or El Gran Bigote, the big mustache, and his rather extraordinary facial adornment most certainly helped Oscar to recall this particular customer despite his long absence.
After our delicious and rather substantial meal, neither Barry nor I ordered dessert. However, to celebrate our last visit to the Pescatore before moving to France, the restaurant invited us to a dessert on the house, and not just any little dish of flan straight from the fridge, either. Au contraire, Oscar rolled over the fire-spewing dragon-cart and proceeded to prepare Crêpes Suzette for us with elegant expertise. He presented the crêpes on lovingly decorated plates with his best wishes for our future!
That’s ¡Pura Vida! That’s Costa Rica.