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It's a . . . . .

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Jane and I are tied up on on little project but thought you might want to enter the “Guess what this is contest”. Grand Prize for the best answer (judges ruling is final) a treat at Casco’s ice cream shop when you visit - you are planing a trip, aren’t you? So if you want to enter . . . Read more

Rain Delay

Casco Viejo Map
Our walking tour of Casco Viejo was rained out, but the folks at the Casco Antiguo office offered to give us a special tour on Monday. They only have two English speaking guides and one offered to come in on a day when they don’t normally give tours. We’re both looking forward to learning more about the place.

Odds and Ends: Walked down Avenida Central the other day to shop. On our way back Jane decides to get two bananas. Asks the street vendor how much for two - he says 25¢. Jane leaves with six bananas, the price, still 25¢. Read more

One Egg

Casco Viejo Grocery
A few days ago Jane was one egg short for a batch of brownies. Out the door she goes to one of our little grocery stores (think convenience store with a little more character) a couple of minutes later she’s back with ONE egg. Cost 15¢. Brownies coming right up.

At the pharmacy if you want a single Advil, no problem. Need twenty - they’ll count them out for you. The same with most drugs, you only need to buy the quantity you want. Read more

Playing Catch Up

Will try to get back on schedule after my little layoff - was very busy doing nothing!

Bridge of the Americas (Puente de las Américas)
Last Friday we rented a car so we could do a little exploring outside the city and run a few errands. Our first trip was to La Chorrera to check out a small development. It was a thirty minute drive West on the Interamericana Highway to Brisas de los Lagos where the project engineer gave us a great tour. They have done a very nice job so far and we liked what we saw. Two big decisions we still haven’t made - city versus country and this project would require we build (something that I didn’t want to do - hassle factor, mainly) as they have no existing homes for sale. Still, it was impressive enough that it is on our “list” as the search continues. Read more

Nothing Exciting

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Our major accomplishment for the day - we looked at another apartment that is for sale in the building next to our rental. Two bedrooms, nice view of the city, and some great inside architectural features inside - exposed “calicanto” walls and remnants of the very old foundation. It’s on our “maybe” list.

Casco Viejo Park
A trip via taxi to the grocery store (one of the amenities that Casco Viejo lacks) and several walks around Casco, took care of the rest of the day. What a life.

Special Note: I’ve upgraded the software used to create this site. If you see something that doesn’t look right or won’t display - please let me know.

Take care.

Before I Forget

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A couple of “Extras” that will get lost in the shuffle if I don’t write them down.

Today (Wednesday) we went for our first major trip to the grocery store - up until now, we shopped almost daily for the things we needed. Now that we are settling in, it was time to stock up. Get a taxi and off we go. Load up a cart and head for the check-out lane (those dying for some cost of living comparisons will have to wait) and we are greeted by the usual “bagboys” - one unloads your cart for you, then joins his buddy at the other end to bag the stuff up. Then he rolls the cart to the curb and gets you a taxi, loads the groceries into the taxi and we are on our way. Service with a smile.

The taxi drivers continue to amaze. Going to the grocery we had “Mario Andretti” - thought Jane was going to jump out if given a chance. On the return, just a leisurely drive. Arrived at the apartment where our neighbors maid and handyman helped carry in the groceries. Then the amazing part. We had been inside the apartment unpacking the groceries when someone knocked at the door - it was the maid with a bag of our groceries. She told Jane we had left the bag in the taxi and the driver had RETURNED when he later discovered the bag. Maybe I’m getting cynical but I wonder in how many places that would happen. His total fare - a whopping $3.00.

Take Care.
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Up and Running, sort of

Actually, I’m back to walking (slowly) - when I was a bit younger this type malady would hit me for a day or two, then I was back at it. This time around it’s coming up on a week, starting to feel better - but no two mile hikes anytime soon.

The good news - we moved on schedule (Monday) and are now it our Casco Viejo (old city) apartment. Our small building (6 apartments) was originally built in 1906 - it’s one of the younger buildings in this area, many of which are over three hundred years old.
The neighborhood was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1998 and restoration is still very much a work in progress. When I get feeling just a little better I will start a series on Casco Viejo and our experiences.

View of Panama City from Casco Viejo

That’s it for now. This last picture is the view from a small park about fifty feet from our front door. (Yes, it’s a picture I took - just played with it a little).

Take care.
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Sunday Afternoon Football

Varsity League Football
Looking around for something to do after church I found a little blurb on a “Varsity League Football” game in Balboa. Tried to find a little more information to no avail (was it soccer, rugby, “American football”) as the “Varsity League” had me a little stumped. But, what the heck - let’s just go and see. Turned out to be “American football” (if you’re wondering why I use quotes - it’s because in the rest of the world “football” is really soccer). It was the leagues opening day and
and the crowd roars
we saw the Jaguars vs the Falcons plus two other teams we never got the names of. The format, (don’t know if the do this at all their “games”) two teams play a quarter. Then the other two play a quarter and then they start rotating opponents. Lots of cheering (no cheerleaders), music, Spanish announcer with a little English. Had fun, and the football, although not the NFL, was entertaining. Read more

Back in the City

Puente de las Américas (Bridge of the Americas)
We returned to PC yesterday. It’s a little warm (Jane says, hot) after our week in the mountains and will take a couple of days to readapt. Because our apartment wouldn’t be ready until late in the day we decided to tour a small development just West of Panama City, so we cross the canal on the Puente de las Américas (Bridge of the Americas) and head for the town of Arraijan, about a thirty minute drive. Closer to the city than Cerro Azul, a small development in Arraijan had all new construction - so we thought it might be worth looking at. The location was pretty good but the construction quality just wasn’t what I thought it should be, so it won’t be on our list for future consideration. Nice trip though - gave us a look at an area we had not previously visited. Read more

The "Enigmo" Got Me

Why driving is so much fun in Panama

Jane and I went for a drive into the “city” today. Nothing special in mind - primarily it was OJT on how to survive while driving in Panama City plus navigation 101. Nothing really exciting happened, we ended up at Los Pueblos (think VERY big strip shopping center), walked around and then had lunch at TGIFridays. Heading back to Cerro Azul we stopped at El Machetazo (the Panama version of a Super Walmart) for groceries and dessert, a DQ Blizzard. Then back to the apartment where Wags was, not so patiently, waiting. Read more
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