Who has more than $100,000 in their bank account?

Trip Start Aug 26, 2005
Trip End May 26, 2008

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Flag of Panama  ,
Thursday, March 1, 2007

Better still who has $100,000 US Dollars in a suitcase?

I'll tell you who - It’s that nutcase who tried to walk onto my flight to Panama city with it in a great big suitcase full of loot and delayed us for an hour.

I was comfortably sitting in my window seat, just behind the wing, looking out as the bags started coming off the plane. I knew something was going down before Captain Budweiser made the announcement: "Attention folks, looks like someone has tried to take a little too much cash out of the country and got caught by that sniffer dog you all walked past (yep apparently dogs can smell money) so we are just trying to locate his bags and we should be underway shortly - it shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes"

Well he must have had a few very small, very well hidden bags, because the whole plane was unloaded before his bags were located and almost an hour later, we were finally taxied out and began our 2.5 hour flight to Panama City.

I had my head pressed to the window for the entire flight, watching tiny islands dotting the sea below. We flew over the west coast of Cuba and landed in Panama.

It’s hot in Panama, a little over 30 degrees, its Smokey noisy and dirty and once again they all speak Spanish. What a shock to the system. I put my bargaining skills to the test and scored a super cheap cab to a downtown hostel called "Casa de Carmen" and ran across the road to a convenience store, where everything was cheap! I bought an apple for 15 cents, a pineapple for 20 cents, and a big bag of oranges for 20 cents and I ate a fruity lunch. No longer are the corners adorned with Starbucks restaurants and fast food chains. It’s a whole lot of independent restaurants, all making the same thing - rice, beans and chicken.

Its day 1 and already I have fed 3 poor homeless doggies, eaten crab soup, caught a chicken bus, been honked at and almost run over and been blasted by the intense heat. I love Latin America. Let the adventures begin.
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