Dos amigos en la cuarto de esperar, Ciudad Panama 3/6/16
The picture is Mariah with two friends in the waiting room at Albrook Mall Panama City prior to our departure for David. We’re taking advantage of every opportunity to learn Spanish. The chica bonita is learning English in 4th grade, so things proceeded apace. (Yes, we asked if we could photograph them). This is just how gracious the people are here; they were eager to assist our stumbling efforts to communicate, never laughing even once, though I’m sure they thought about it. (Hint, when describing your state of high body temperature, use ‘calor,’ never ‘caliente.’ Yes, there are, ahem, certain connotations involved. Don’t ask.)
Our view from the autobus: A good seat selection? No, the heat was muy mucho!
After a once-in-a-lifetime experience, (meaning we’ll never do it again) our nine-hour cross-country bus trip from Panama City to David (Dah-Veed) ranks up there with life’s more grueling, therefore more rewarding and insightful experiences: Yes, we’re the spoiled rotten gringos; yes, we thought of many, many ways the bus system could be improved; yes, we kept our traps shut. This is not our country, and the Panamanian people are justly proud of the infrastructure and system they’ve built in the recent past. Still, on a 550 kilometer trip, driving into the sun, air conditioning might be nice, and not everyone aboard the double-decker bus is as deaf as me, so the 90 decibel audio in the three Disney movies could have been dialed back a teeny bit. (I’m fortunate insofar as I was able to mute my hearing aids.) Lastly, the mountains (literally) of trash along the roadway in Panama is disheartening, especially considering the astonishing beauty of the country otherwise.
Enough with the kvetching. We’re back in Boquete again at last. Arriving at Finca Luz on Sunday evening, we received what is without question the most amazing welcome back since Marco Polo brought the hula hoop to Italy. Elizabeth and Dianne are THE Best hosts, and the owners of THE best little coffee farm in all of freakin’ Central America. If you write nice things about us on this blog, we’ll introduce you to the Finca Luz signature brand, Mariposa Azul. Blue Butterfly is Cafe por un excelente dia. Try this coffee and you’ll win a hula hoop contest, I guarantee it. Or maybe a trip to Italy! No, I made that part up. There’s no trip to Italy.
Main entrance: Finca Luz (Farm of Light)
After a comida of salmon, zuchini, y enselada, plus yummy vino blanco y vino tinto, followed by un delicioso postres de chocolate mousse etc. etc. we yakked into the temperate evening with our dear amigas, who offered much advice on prospering en Panama. Don’t assume anything; don’t act like a victim; don’t be a show-offy pain in the glutes Norte Americano, and do learn as much Espanol as possible. One sage tidbit of vital info concerned the scorpions. Elizabeth warned that this is the dry season, and thus the nasty little arachnids are eager to join you inside tu casa as they look for water. Very timely advice it was, too. Before we crashed for the night yours truly had to dispatch not one but two scorpions in our bathroom. I hate (HATE) killing anything, especially spiders and their cousins, but I didn’t wish to share the casita with those two little biters thank you ever so much.
On the road to El Parador por almuerzo
Today was rest, a full, delicious day of doing as little as possible. The high point was a stroll from Finca Luz down the road to El Parador guest house for lunch. Life is good, Boquete is beautiful and we’re looking forward to exploring every corner of it, with or without scorpions.