First impressions… It would seem that few visitors to Costa Rica return home with gasp-inducing tales of the beauty of San Jose. Why? Frankly, it is not particularly beautiful, and any sharp intake of breath will probably have more to do with an attempt to avoid the exhaust pollution. Downtown, streets are packed with traffic as heavy buses barely moving beyond second gear crawl through the streets and kamikaze taxis double dare pedestrians to try and cross the streets. At street level the general theme of clutter and chaos prevails with vendors selling fruit, cigarettes, lottery tickets, and other daily necessities.