Ten Plagues Upon Playa Tamarindo

English: Second plague of Egypt. Frogs. Pictur...

English: Second plague of Egypt. Frogs. Picture from popular bible encyclopedia of archimandrite Nikiphor (1891 year). Русский: Вторая казнь Египетская – жабы. Иллюстрация из иллюстрированной библейской энциклопедии архимандрита Никифора (1891 год) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A wet season downpour drove me inside yesterday, and the usual internet problems left me with little to do besides…read books.

My latest acquisition is a Bible, courtesy of some Evangelicals who are trying to pester the loyal Catholic mobs to cast their culture aside, and slide into social anarchy before being redeemed by the Cult of Speaking in Tongues and Snake Handling.

I have read this book before, and know to skip Genesis…that first page always gets me, where God is a singular sky god for a while, then a plural land god when he says, “Let us make man in our image” before becoming a singular sky god again.

Bad editing and no consideration for continuity always drive me to close a book, or go directly to the end and find out what happened, allowing me to feel like I read it.  That’s been my approach in the past, go straight to Revelations, and read a few chapters in reverse order.

Now, if you’re looking for some tough talking, action-packed, tightly written words with the power of a literary locomotive, that’s a good place to start.  I usually get bored by Kings or where everyone is begatting, so I’ve never read Exodus.  I should have, since that book seems to hold the secret to the Wet Season torments that drove me inside in the first place…the Ten Plagues that Moses allegedly brought down on the Egyptians.  If I go over them one at a time you’ll see what I mean.  “Fasten your seatbelts – it’s going to be a bumpy night,” as Bette Davis advised her entourage in the film “All About Eve.”  (Another Biblical reference…hmmmm).  Don’t let me digress…here are the plagues I missed in Exodus, but am living out now:

1) Plague of Blood – when it rain here in Central America, it rains.  And, since the roads are not paved and there are no ditches or water channels, they become rivers of mud…in the case of western Costa Rica, where the earth has a red tint to it due to iron and other volcanic minerals, the rivers running by my front door are Red as Blood.  Torrents of knee-deep water come down the hill behind my place, carrying boulders the size of bean bag chairs.  A good friend of mine has scars on his shins from sliding down one of these roads a couple of years ago…a good reason to stay inside.

2) Plague of Frogs – I heard this trumpeting sound the other night.  The lonely little EMS vehicle always parked outside the main market, I thought.  I’d never heard it, since it hasn’t moved in the eight months I’ve lived here.  But it sounded like geese…big geese, the volume of their calls bringing to mind visions of madness.  But, as usual, I was wrong.  It is the rainy season infestation of frogs, a friend told me.  He also told me if I wanted to see them all I had to do was go down to our pool, which they take over for the month or so they’re in their rutting period.  So, I went.  Frogs were in the pool, and around the pool on lounge chairs, puffing up and emitting a terrifying sound from their froggy mouths to advertise their sexual potency.  But they were hand-sized creatures, hardly large enough to emit so much noise, but what do I know…I retreated to my apartment building, toweled off, and slammed the door in case any of the croakers followed me and tried to slip in after me.

3) Plague of Lice or Gnats – hasn’t happened yet…but I know where the EMS vehicle is now.

4) Plague of Flies or Wild Animals – Wet Season does bring on an unusual amount of flies, and the animals are coming back down out of the hills.  The Howler monkeys have set up shop across the street and in the patches of jungle beside and behind my apartment building.  I saw a juvenile yesterday, hanging by his tail, using a tree branch like a switch as he tormented the dogs howling beneath.  I felt better after that, knowing I wasn’t the only creature suffering these plagues.

5) Plague of Pestilence – I forgot what pestilence means…and, everyone has their own definition, so I’ll let this one sit.  I’ve got enough to deal with already with Rivers of Blood, Frog Gangs and Switch-wielding Howlers.

6) Plague of Boils – there is usually a boil alert when water starts washing the sewage and garbage down from where the Nicaraguan and Columbian illegals have set up their shanty towns.  I already knew this…not plague worthy in my book.

7) Plague of Hail – I haven’t seen any hail yet, but the rain is falling so hard that a piece of the roof fell in not long ago.  Not a large piece of roof…just enough to damage an iron railing, or bust a head if anyone had been walking beneath it.  Fell on the steps just outside my back bedroom window, where I was reading Exodus…I think I should have stuck with the wickedly fierce prose in Revelations.

6588) Plague of Locusts – Locusts, Schmocusts…I have grasshoppers the size of magic markers coming in and out of my place all the time.  They take over the coffee pot when they please, and licked the cream my wife spilled right off the floor.  They crunch under foot when I step on them on my way to empty the garbage…a sound similar to when tap dancers toss sand on a stage before they start their steel-bottom shoed shenanigans.

9) Plague of Darkness – hasn’t occurred as of yet, but it would be a relief.  The Howlers shut up, it never rains at night, and it would be convenient if those frogs got run over by the drunken, brain-dead surfers that race around on the mud-slickened roads after a hard day of Flor de Cana rum and the head-high, right-breaking waves I hear crashing against the shore.

10) Plague of the First-Born – being a first-born, I don’t even want to hear about this.  I’m definitely staying away from this Old Testament mayhem…going back to the ferocious idyll of Revelations, thank you.  I’ve learned my lesson for the day.  And, if I end up going to Hell for any perceived insolence, I’ll go with the words of Mark Twain on my lips –

“Heaven for climate, Hell for company.”



17 thoughts on “Ten Plagues Upon Playa Tamarindo

  1. monosolo says:

    Reblogged this on G.B.Shaw and commented:
    If you keep asking questions about God you’re going to Hell. Do you hear me…Hell ! ! ! ! ! ! !

  2. words4jp says:

    uhhh – you better get some blood to smear on your front door, just in case the first born son plague takes place……………………..


    • coyotero2112 says:

      Coyote’s are quick movers…create a moving target and keep low. You’ve always got a witty comment. I was thinking the other day how there will be no more books of letters, like Twain, or even Dr. Thompson, now that e-mail has taken over. A book of comments? My weirdest so far was, “You may be the worst author ever,” almost like an advertisement for testing or something.

      • words4jp says:

        Why thank you very much – you are ‘write’ about email – i wonder sometimes if anyone even knows how to write – not type – but a letter.

        i suppose coyotes are quick little boogers, though the one’s in NW Illinois seem to be very lanky and slow – the Midwest drawl, so to speak!

        later gator…

  3. ioniamartin says:

    So many bad things happen to men in the bible. It makes you wonder if this is where the original cross dressing began.

    • coyotero2112 says:

      The origon of the one-god universe kind of took the fun out of the business. The Greek’s gods had all their spats, then played them out with people, picking their favorites and using them like pawns. Little friction with one god and a former favorite turned evil to blame for every occurance. We carry on.

  4. The description of Costa Rica sounds heavenly. Has the flavor of Hemmingway. Could you work in a cigar and some hard liquor?

    • coyotero2112 says:

      The clean kill and strong meat along with a bit of gin would go over good here. There are about a dozen Hems in town, but none of them can write. If you like wild weather, now is the time of year for here. Summers are boring…just sun, sun, and more sun. Now it’s lightning storms from Lake Nicaraua, Gulf of Nicoya, and the Ocean…sometimes all at the same time. Then, sun, sun, and more sun.

  5. mrs fringe says:

    Hopefully the darkness will bring relief from the howlers while the frogs are busy being fruitful.

    Loved this! 🙂

    • coyotero2112 says:

      This kitchen light thing has me wondering how Howlers are with electrical devices…I can’t even find a bulb in my HUMONGOUS kitchen. So many cabinets above the granite counter tops it takes the wife hundreds of dollars of spending at the mercado to fill them.

      • mrs fringe says:

        Poor wife, toiling to fill the cabinets when all you want is some fruit and a blender. Perhaps one of the howlers will take pity on you and toss a coconut through the hole in the roof. 😉

        • coyotero2112 says:

          Yes…poor wife, hunting and gathering all afternoon in AutoMercado. First day here a friend and I at Playa Negra…4 or 5 lb. coconut falls close enough to him to graze his arm…they’re no joke, unless they hit someone else.

  6. monosolo says:

    That’s just what we need, more plagues. Guess we can impeach Obama over this. He seems to be responsible for all the other ills of the world.

  7. jerwayne2013 says:

    Thoroughly entertaining…no offence to the Bible. Loved reading the 10 Plagues–especially your prospective of such. Sounds like the mating frogs at the pool make it a little difficult to take a swim during the winter season if one could call it that in a place that is so warm all the time.

  8. I very much appreciate your Costa Rican version of the 10 Plagues. I had always thought Seattle was the home of the 10 Plagues. Darkness for sure. I went to work in the dark and drove home in the dark for more than two years. I realized I needed to go back to the South when I couldn’t remember the last time I’d seen el sol. Frogs? Locusts? You must be feeling all murky right about now. No internet? The Plague of all Plagues.

    • coyotero2112 says:

      And, my kitchen light just went out…writing this in the dark. Seattle’s worst plague was all the money Gates brought in…ruined the ambience of what used to be a sleepy, laid-back, city where millionaires, winos, skate punks, drag queens, and dock workers used to all frequent the same divey waterfront bars. Oh well…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s