Roads, Mannequins, Drawings and Zeuses.

It rained for four days and four nights and I built one tenth of a really big boat.... That was a joke. This was not a matter of steady light showers. For the four days before Christmas we received pounding, pouring, road obliterating water. There was a landslide and we didn't see a car for three weeks. That is not a joke.
Last Thursday, six days ago we were planing on visiting the city, we were invited to spend some time with 30 or so college students instead. They were in our area with an organization that is new to Panama, named Business Brigades. The students represented large clubs at different colleges that plan to work with and invest small capitol in micro businesses. Their leader has been working in Honduras which is rumored to have bad roads. He said our road is the worst he has seen, and he didn't see it when it was wet. One of their trucks got stuck in the middle of a river on the way up. The same spot, in the same river, that our chiva got stuck in the one time we tried to ride it to the community where Business Brigades stayed.

This is some random chiva that was at our stop while we were waiting for our chiva. Just so you know what one looks like.

Our chiva is somewhat older and more broken down looking. It can hold about 20 people and some fighting cocks, and puppies, and gas tanks, and an amazing verity of things. When it is really full, people ride on top and hang off the back.

This is the truck of a friend who was nice enough to bring up our stove, mattress and two weeks of food for us. This was right after Thanksgiving. He got stuck, but eventually made it out. Hooray!
In the last week we have had wonderful weather and it only rains a little bit every day, so the road is drying out and the transports come almost everyday. When it is not raining the climate is nearly perfect and I can't help but marvel at the paradise we are lucky enough to be living in. There was a rainbow on my birthday.

In Albrooke Mall many of the stores have mannequins and a fair number have impossible, gravity defying, ginormous, ... er earlobes. Apparently taking pictures is not allowed in the stores. One of the guards appeared and said, "No cameras." And I said, "but look it's funny," as I tried to show him the picture on the camera. He did not crack a smile. So we took the second one outside through the display window and took off when a different guard started walking our way.

I did a series of 11 drawings for a Peace Corp manual. Here are a few:

Now Zeus:

Peaceful reading Zeus.

Zeus bravo.

Foy touches his tongue when he does this and I tell her not to. Its not his fault. We all look dumb sometimes.

Zeus helping me pack. Or maybe he just doesn't want to get left behind.

Toilet Cat

We will spend two years in this beautiful country and come back with a bunch of cat pictures.


  1. Anonymous1/25/2008

    I am smitten with Zeus. Does he read Spanish and English?

    Love, Mom

  2. The most perfect way to spend our vacations is this one, getting an excellent trip and spending time with our family, I think this is so exciting.m10m

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