After getting through Honduras, we are starting to feel like old pros as we pull up to each new border station. Feeling like the worst is behind you lends a new sense of confidence as you wave away the helpers and focus more intently on your surroundings.
Exiting Nicaragua early on a Saturday morning was a breeze. We entered just behind a large tourist bus and had a big line ahead of us at immigration. Coming from the Bay Area, waiting in line for various permissions and permits is a custom with which we are all too familiar. Bribery and extortion are rare here and making it through is merely a matter of getting yourself in front of the right official (they don’t stay in one place very long).
Entering Costa Rica was a bit more tedious with lines at each point, but the crossing itself turned out to be much more organized (and air conditioned) than we had read previously. Apparently both sides of the border view agents as a way to generate employment and downsizing has not yet been effected. You will have to find three agents to perform the same task. Later you will fill out a form for an agent to re-write in a notebook, for another agent to re-write on another form, for another agent to type up into an official permit. A smile and a decent amount of patience go a long way.