Costa Rica 35 -- November 3, 2005
Lots of monkeys, son arriving and correction on reading discussion

By Bob Corbett


I was up early today and began to wonder, since yesterday the bus left at 6:15 AM (guide book says first bus is at 6:30 AM), if there were an earlier. So I went to the bus station at 6 AM and there was a line for bus that was taking passengers. I got to the top of the mountain by 6:15 AM. There was indeed less traffic on my way down the mountain to the Manuel Antonio beach than any other day. But, I donít know if it was the earlier time, the less traffic, the very overcast day (I had my rain coat with me, but didnít need it, only needed a towel from the sweat from walking in the humidity and heat), but whatever the reason, there were more monkeys up and about in the trees next to the road than any day so far. Mainly the white-faced monkeys which are very cute. Saw them in four different places, about 10 or more in one place. In one different place I saw three of the howler monkey, which, again remind me of small gorillas, and donít come as close to the road as do the white-faced. All of them where is chatty and screaming moods and it was a loud walk down the mountain, and lots of fun.

The beach was almost dark it was so overcast. The tide was at medium size and I could walk a long way, so by 8:30 AM I was back at the bus stop, my pedometer telling me I had walked 6 miles. I was dripping wet, but really in good spirits with that walk.

I got an e-mail from my son, Brian, today. He and his friend Adam will be arriving at the San Jose airport on Monday, the 7th at 1:38 PM. I plan to meet them at the airport with my bag, and they are renting a car. Off we will head right away today the northwest beach area. They want to do some beaching and surfing, and I can walk anywhere, which is what I like doing. Both Brian and Adam (Adam was our next door neighbor when Brian was growing up) will celebrate their 30th birthdays on Nov. 9th, which was also my motherís birthday. This will be lots of fun.

Yesterday, I posted a note about Aviar, the Israeli fellow Iíd met and our discussions of Jose Saramago. Well, I have been put straight my one of my favorite book correspondents, JL Lindhurst of New York City. JL, once many years ago a student of mine at Webster (but I didnít really know JL in her student days), made contact with me in 2001 when I posted a review of Jose Saramagoís novel, The Gospel According to Jesus Christ.

She and another former student Bob Galloway, each responded at great length to that review, and I posted much of that correspondence as an addendum to the review itself.

And, in the FRESHNESS of my discussion with Aviar, I had forgotten what a complete Saramago NUT JL is. But, in her delightful and strident manner :) she put me straight. When I wrote JL a bit ago to ask permission to post her reply, she was worried that in trying to be humorous she sounded arrogant. I assure you, she is not. But, justly offended that I had so easily forgotten the DEPTH of her love of Saramago, so much so she even made a pilgrimage to Lisbon, Portugal to experience the setting of so many of his novels.

Her comments are below


Bob Corbett wrote: " ... He is the first person I've met who has read ALMOST as many books by Jose Saramago as I have."

JL chastises me:

HELLO! What am I, chopped liver?? :)

... just for the sake of argument, I think I've got you beat:

Iíve read:

Blindness (twice)
Baltasar and Blimunda (twice)
Gospel According to Jesus Christ (twice)(and thinking of reading it again-- funny, just last night I got it off the book shelf and looked at it lovingly)
The Cave
All The Names
History of the Siege of Lisbon
The Stone Raft
The Island (small book)
Journey to Portugal
Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis
The Double

Oh and just for shits-n-grins, I should mention that I actually went to Portugal to see the convent that they built in Baltasar and Blimunda, and to go to Fatima like the guy in Ricardo Reis.


Sorry, but just HAD to-!! (I know you love correctness of all sorts, heh heh)

Corbett wrote: ďÖ this fellow had read all but two of them, (the books Iíve reviewed) and also has read one I've never even heard of -- might either be new, or not yet translated into English, but has been put into Hebrew.Ē

JL asks: What is the title of this book??? (Corbett replies: I donít recall and he didnít write that in my notebook!)

PS, Saramago has a new book coming out next April called "Seeing".


Okay, I've been properly corrected and chastised!

Bob Corbett




Bob Corbett