A walk through the city

There could be days when events come crashing in on one another in continuous waves. That was not today. We had no real plans for the day except one. We wanted to walk to our rental car location to see how much time we should plan on Sunday to pick up the car before checking out of our hotel. Perhaps we would fit in a museum or two, since rain was forecast for the afternoon.

For the record, it took 40 minutes, which wasn’t bad for a bit more than 2 miles. Afterwards we walked through the Parque Metropolitano, which is a fairly large park that caters mostly to athletics. The numerous soccer fields and baseball camps were very active.

Methinks futbol is of great import to the populace. Among the groups in the fields were soccer schools where adult men drilled shots on goals and young boys and girls practiced blocking them. We were impressed by the energy and talent of the youngsters and applauded their accomplishments, noting that we were the only ones applauding. Perhaps it is just expected that they must succeed, and special recognition for doing so might not be all that much appreciated.

We tried to gain entrance to the National Stadium, but were blocked by gates and fences. We could hear chanting and singing from inside the gates. Here is the only view of the stadium we could get.

National Stadium in San Jose

Near the stadium folks played around an overgrown lagoon, and children fed birds. Some of the trees around the lagoon had been removed and the trunks were carved to reveal their inner parrots and macaws.

We entered the Museo de Arte Costaricanese, which was a very interesting building with interesting exhibits.

The principal exhibitor is Rudolfo Stanley. His work was very intriguing. Some of his paintings captured vignettes of daily life with a surrealistic flair. Even in somewhat innocuous settings he express contempt for modern (or post modern) life, and questions the direction society is headed.

This piece is titled Quo Vadis. The church leaders are engaged in their perversions, a captive Christ holds the lighter that he used to burn the church, and the representative of the state turns away, not recognizing the collapse of the integrating institutions. Where are we headed?

Another thoughtful exhibit was from an archeological survey of the penal colony on the isle of San Lucas that had been occupied from 1873 until 1991. The focus was on the graffiti and drawings on the prison walls.

Felo Garcia had an interesting exhibit of disturbing representations of urbanization.

An upstairs gallery had a bas relief mural covering four walls, representing the history of Costa Rica, from pre-columbian days , the colonization by Spain, and the emergence of the modern era. The room was brightly lit by the many windows, so it was difficult to capture all of the mural.

The only other activity we were planning for the day was to visit the National Museum. By the time we got there, however, it was nearing closing time. We did not enter, and the only image I was able to get was of the bullet holes in the walls from some battle or other. If we are ever to return here, visiting this museum is first on the list of preferred actions.

That was pretty much our day. In the evening we walked to a nearby neighborhood, Barrio Escalante, which is about ten minutes from our hotel but is very different. The area is rapidly gentrifying and yuppifying. It is quite vibrant, and the many restaurants, bistros and pubs provide excellent fare at relatively modest prices. We visited at least one too many pubs.

We suspect ice cream is distributed from this installation.
This restaurant appears to be a real zoo.

That’s it for me for the day. Don’t forget to read Paula’s post for today. You might stand a better chance of getting to the truth. As I said, we visited at least one pub too many. I am publishing this without proofreading.

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