Up in the Mountains

Trip Start Feb 03, 2006
Trip End Jun 20, 2006

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Flag of Panama  ,
Tuesday, February 7, 2006

We have made it up the mountain town of Boquete. It is about 3200 feet up, and quite nice and cool and breezy. We hope that being here awhile will help us acclimate more to the weather in no-snow land. We are staying at Hotelito Nombu, a new hostel here. It is run by a Swiss girl and her Costa Rican Boyfriend. The "dorm room" is actually just the entry room, but luckily we are staying in a private room. Nice enough except the boards on the bed groan whenever Andrew moves.

We havenŽt been here long, so we thought weŽd fill in some blanks on Panama City.

After the first night, we had decided that Panama City was a disgusting, horrible place to be.

Our first morning, we headed out to the Miraflores Locks, which was interesting but a bit pricey for what was basically a viewing stand.

We spent the afternoon wandering around El Cangrejo, the ritzy banking district. It was disconcerting to see so many American name brand stores. There were lots of high rises with lots of buzzards soaring around them. That neighborhood is also quite strange in that you will walk by a glimmering all-glass high rise right next to an abandoned dump of a home.

We then wandered back to our hotel area (Bella Vista) and discovered a cool neighborhood a few streets above our hotel. It was dirty and loud and busy and not at all oriented towards tourists. Much more interesting than El Cangrejo. It reminded Andrew a bit of our time in Tepic, Mexico.

We discovered an "added bonus" of our hotel--one of the television stations appears to play 24-hour Paris Hilton Sex Video. Strange.

In the end, we decided that Panama City wasnŽt so bad, although we were not wanting to stay any longer there.

Our bus from Panama City to David was 6 hrs long and BOOOOOORRRRRING. We are both sick of sitting after that and the long plane rides, so we are planning to stay in Boquete for a few days. This morning we went to a finca (plantation) that grows and roasts coffee. Supposedly some of the best in Panama. It was a great cup of coffee, and cheap. There is some sort of huge gringo real estate boom here, we will explore it more. But locals on the street are still friendly, and almost everyone says "buenas!".

We will try to upload photos soon (wish us luck!)....
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