(Continued from The Costa Rican Mermaid)
Jumping onto the back of Star’s moped, and holding onto her for dear life, we took off down a dirt road, leaving my brother and Star’s girlfriend in the dust. About 30 seconds into the ride, I realized this was quite possibly the most idiotic thing I had ever agreed to in my life. Not only was I hanging onto the waist of a decently buzzed girl I’d just barely met while she was driving a crappy Costa Rican moped down a pot-holed road at about 40 mph, but I had absolutely NO idea where the hell we were going. Star zipped down the road, bobbing and weaving around huge potholes that could probably have broken a Humvee’s axle. As the moped went slicing back and forth through this scary looking jungle with only the moonlight peeking through the trees and a barely functioning headlight showing us the way, I was just hoping it would be over soon, and that I would still be alive at the end of it. I was pretty sure my mom would be pissed if I died in a scooter-wreck in the Costa Rican jungle at the hands of some hippie girl.
After what seemed like forever and about 100 near-death and broken-bone misses, we arrived at a gorgeous totally isolated beach with an island glistening in the moonlight about a mile off shore. Star said, “Well, are you coming in or what?” and with that, she hopped off the scooter, took off her dress, ripped her bra off and dove into the ocean. Wearing only a very thin stringy thong, she was completely topless otherwise. It was about this time that I sorta had to smack myself in the face and just make sure I wasn’t dreaming. Almost as if I were in a dream, I tore off my own T-shirt, took off my shorts, leaving only my boxers on and swam in after her, not having any idea what would happen next.
By the time I caught up to Star, she was floating in the calm Atlantic waters, face towards the sky, with the 3 am full moonlight shining off her exposed breasts, slowly moving her arms to keep herself afloat. I remember thinking to myself that she almost looked like a mermaid in that light. “Isn’t this just awesome?”, she asked, and like a dumb-ass I just stood next to her in the water and mutely nodded. At some point, I decided to stop being a dumb-ass and waded closer to her. Reaching out with my arms, I held on to her from below the water, while she lay there paddling in my arms for a few minutes. I was trying to figure out my next move, when she said out of the blue, “Come swim to the island with me!” I looked up at the shimmering island, about a mile off-shore, and said “What…THAT island?” Star nodded, and started wading out and swimming out to attempt her 1-mile drunken swim to that offshore island. Even in my totally whacked-out and shocked state, I instantly realized three things at that time.
1) I was a decent swimmer but I wasn’t about to drown and die in the ocean that night while swimming drunk, no matter how awesome the situation and “scenery” was.
2) I had to figure out how to keep Star from doing the same thing and maybe keep the fun times closer to shore.
3) Star was my only ride back from this ridiculously isolated beach, so I had to do 2) without completely pissing her off.
So I did what any sane 20-something bachelor would do in that case: I naked tackled her. Grabbing her from behind, I slowly but surely dragged Star back to shore. All the while, she was facing the island, waving her hands, and going on and on about getting to the island. She was yelling things like “No, no….I can TOTALLY make it!” and “You have to come out there, just swim it with me!” I’m not sure if any of you have tried to drag a determined topless girl away from something while you are in the ocean, but it’s not as easy as it sounds. First of all, everyone and everything’s slippery. Secondly, there’s only so many parts of a woman’s body you can grab onto while trying to drag them out. I ended up grabbing her boobs and accidentally getting to second base with her about 20 times over that 10 minute period while I was just trying to drag her to shore! The whole time this was happening, I remember just saying to myself, “What the fuck….what the fuck…”
Eventually we got back to shore, and let’s just say Star was not amused that I had prevented her from fulfilling her life-long mission of topless swimming to an offshore Costa Rican island. The potholed scooter ride back to the hostel was both painful on my bottom and my ego, and just painfully awkward and silent. The rest of the story isn’t as exciting. Star and I finally got back to the hammock hostel, and everyone was basically asleep except my brother, who was glad to see I was still in one piece. Star and I said a quick goodbye, I thanked her the best way I could for the drunken 3 am scooter ride and impromptu Co-Ed Naked Tackle Swimming match, and my brother and I finally crashed in our hammocks.
For 2 sleepless hours in that hostel hammock, 3 hours on that bus ride back to San Jose, and the 6 hour flight back to California, I just sat there trying to make heads or tails over what had happened on that completely bizarre last night in Costa Rica. My brother and I definitely had the trip of a lifetime. I had my first ridiculous story about an experience with a girl while traveling abroad. Little did I know there would be many other crazy stories coming up, with countless parties, women, and ridiculous experiences, from Reykjavik, Shanghai, and everywhere in between. All it took was that one wild week in Costa Rica in 2005: I was hooked to living life as The Traveling Bachelor.