In Mike’s Language class today he was required to recite his address. No big deal, right? Wrong. In almost all of Costa Rica there are no street names or building numbers. So to tell someone where you live (delivery boy, police, friend, etc.) you have to provide detailed directions via well known landmarks and compass points.
Literally, this is the address for our apartment:
San Francisco de Dos Rios, Los Sauces
De la casseta del guarda del parcque de Los Sauces
Dos cuatras oeste, cincuenta metros norte
Apartmentos Islas Canarias, aparmento dos
Here is the rough English translation:
The community of San Francisco of Two Rivers
The neighborhood of Los Sauces
From the guard shack in Los Sauces park (travel)
Two blocks west, 50 meters north
The Canary Island Apartments, #2
In some instances you hear directions like, “left at the old fig tree”, but, the fig tree was cut down ten years ago. Or, “right at the big Martinez house”, but, the Martinez family moved out 15 years ago. You just have to get used to that stuff.
This is hard to get used to when you are accustomed to 10 years of using Mapquest.