By plane and bus to Boguete, Chiriqui Province,

Trip Start Dec 02, 2008
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4
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Trip End Feb 07, 2009


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Marilos

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Friday, December 5, 2008

Our trip from Panama City to Boquete involved a taxi, a one hour plane ride, another taxi, and a one hour bus ride. We started in the AM in Panama City. The national Airport is Albrook, the former US airbase in the Canal Zone. We had never flown on Aeroperlas before. The process began at check in. As soon as we showed our passports and ticket reservations, we were handed a small square piece of paper, which requested names and addresses of who we would want to notify in case of an emergency. Once that was out of the way we proceeded to baggage check in, which consisted of a single line of passengers, and a small rectangular table where two rubber gloved workers were thouroughly going through the each passenger´s bags. Barb was ahead of me and I grimaced as I watched them empty her purse, examine each baggie, and item inside. They were quite thorough. When my turn came I presented the my back pack, and I opened the two side pockets and top lid first. One was full of suncream, another full of insect repellant, and the top was full of sunglasses, baseball hat etc. I then opened the top of the main compartment. There, on the top inisde the bag, was my dirty laundry from the past three days. I explained ¨mi ropas sucio¨were to be washed that night , when I got to the hotel. The security guard made a face, peered briefly into the depths of my rucksack, and hesitated, then pushed the bag further down the line, with his rubbered glove, while expalining ¨Completa¨. So much for security. 

We were then directed to a small waiting area. Barb when to the restroom and returned quickly. Both the stalls were inoperable, and loaded. She resolved to wait til we got on the plane. About the time we were to board the plane, an official stepped forward, and picked up the microphone on the small boarding podium, near the door. Try as he did, over several minutes, he could not manage to get the microphone and PA system to work properly. Only small snipits of words would blurt out across the small room, then you could not hear what he was saying. Finally, in exasperation he put done the mic, and yelled out across the room that the plane would be delayed for ¨Problems Tecnical¨ . At this pňint, I was not suprised.  Soon there appeared a very young guy with a small plastic fishing tackle box, and together they saunted out onto the tramack. Within an hour we were boarding and we soon roared down the runway in what I believe was a DeHaviland wing over turbo prop airplane. We flew over Panama City and turned west and headed across the canal for our hour long flight to David, the capital of Chiriqui Province. The ride was a thriller. The weather had been stormy for weeks before our arrival. There was still a portion of the Pacific front at play and the clouds stacked up high over our destination. It was really a rock and roll flight for over 30 minutes as we decended into David. Brab loves to travel, and hates to fly. When I got off I had to shake the blood back into my bloodless left arm.
 

At the David Airport we caught a 5 dollar cab ride to the bus stop for the one hour bus ride to Boquete. All went well and we were pleased to arrive in this small mountain town, nesseled beneath the volcano, named Baru. The town is located at 3,497 feet above sea level. The altitude makes this much cooler tan Panama City and the coastal towns. The temp averages 68 to 80 degrees, all year round. As I said earlier, there had been a major front and much rain for a few weks before we arrived. The city folks said it was the worst thy had experienced in 40 years. I will include some photos of the flood damage.

There are LOTS of Americans and Europeans here. About one third of the population is local, one third gringoes that live here permantly, and the final third are vacationers like us. Many choose to live and own property here. There is no monetary exchange as the US dollar is the currancy here. The food is cheap, we have been eating at a local buffet for about $2.50 per meal. Beer is cheap too! 7 US a case, 75 cents a bottle at the local pub for expats (named Amigos!)

We spent the last 4 days walking around the town and up and down the mountain roads. This really is a garden spot. In fact there is a large private garden up the road about one mile called Mi Jardin, es su Jardin ¨My garden is your garden¨. Open to the public during the day light hours.  Barb and I think we like this spot a lot, and may return here to rent a place for 3 or 4 months. There is good internet, satellite TV, friendly folks and warm weather. There is also a Spanish Language school called Habla Ya. I believe the dry season here is from Jan through March. I will put a few photos to give you the feel for the place. I woulkd really recommend this place for those who want to get away from the states and enjoy a friendly latin culture in the mistyu mountains. The have a misty rain here called Bajareque. The rain that dosent get you wet, just a misting when the sun is out. Plants love it here. You will too, as long as you don{t mind living under a Volcanoe Baru. But when it rains, it really RAINS! Don{t build by the river!  

fro a few days of beach time. Stay tuned.
   



  
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Comments

j.skids
j.skids on

Amigo's!!!!!
Glad to hear you found a place called Amigo's. Seems cheaper than the one I work at. Have a safe trip and a very Merry Christmas. See you when you get back. Your pictures are stunning!!!!
Tami

donmckee
donmckee on

the traveling Nomads
As usual, the pictures are great. We were especially taken by the stunning bird pics. Please tell us they were taken with an SLR!
Don and Janis

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