Futebol! Celebrating victory and defeat in Costa Rica
Anyone that has visited Costa Rica will tell you that it is an amazingly friendly, warm place. My wife and I visited in 2014, and the timing was such that the historic run of the Costa Rican soccer team in the World Cup was in its most epic moments. The first few photos were taken right after a tense shoot-out victory, in a tiny town with one paved road. We watched the game along with a packed house of locals in one of the handful of restaurants. When the game-winning goal was scored, the restaurant went nuts, and people slowly trickled out to the street. From all around the town, motors started revving and horns blaring, and slowly but surely, an impromptu parade started - up and down the main street. They waved at me, but could care less about whether there was a gringo around - this was a celebration for them, not for me. From small families on motorbikes, to pickup trucks loaded with revelers, the parade went on and on - back and forth the street. It was thrilling to be in the middle of a spontaneous, joyous celebration like that.
The second batch of nighttime photos came after Costa Rica's eventual defeat, knocking them out of the World Cup. Despite the loss, they were so incredibly proud of the team, that you would have thought they won the entire event. It was a great display of sportsmanship, and if you ask me, a great display of the right way to celebrate sports in general. It was too dark to photograph too effectively, but I caught a few images with nice emotion, and was cleaning confetti out of my hair, clothes and bags for months afterwards.
More from Costa Rica coming up soon!