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Real World: Panama

Staying with a family, San Blas Next

I only have a few minutes so here I go...

Ok, maybe my spanish isnt that well (cant figure out how to use the apostrophy on here). I thought my friend Ortega was going to take me to San Blas with him but I later realized that he offered to take me to his house instead. His jerk of a boss didnt show up until late on Wednesday we we didnt end up leaving San Carlos until 800. Three hours or so later, we walked up to his house. Modest to say the least. there are two bed rooms, a kitchen and a living room. I purposly did not add bathroom because they do not really have one. There is a kind of outhouse outside, a sink and a hole for #1s. We were greeted by his wife, 9 year old daughter, and 30 something step son. Not sure why, but the son does not like me much and has not said anything to me since i have been there. We had a plate of rice and chicken and headed to bed. I had a hard time sleeping as it was pretty hot and there were mosquitos. There were a couple times when i asked myself what was I doing here, but this is how people live and it is important for me to see and live it. Ortega told me earlier that he pays 100 a month in rent. I took a couple of pics and will post them later. I had to take them when everyone was gone as I did not want to be rude and take them while they were there. After I looked at the pics, I realized how different it was from what I am used to.

After a couple hours of sleep, I had to wake up when everyone else did as I was sleeping on the couch in the living room. I felt pretty uncomfortable so I told him that I was going to head to Panama City that day so I could make my way to San Blas. He told me to stay another night and I would leave the next day at 8am. I needed to push myself so i agreed. His wife made me a couple of eggs and then Ortega and I headed off to the store. Everyone around here uses busses or taxis as no many people can afford cars. We jumped into a taxi and headed to town. We ran a couple of errands and headed to the super market. It was wierd walking around with him as I felt like I was among the people while at the same time, I got some pretty strange looks as this isnt a place they see many tourists. I am still having an identity crisis as my skin and hair is similar but they still call me a gringo.

Later on we walked his daughter to school, which was really cool. He and his wife are indigenous to san blas so she is always wearing their clothes, which are all hand made and colorful. I found an intenet spot on the way and stopped in to make some human contact. Back at the house, he made some calls and told me I had a ride to san blas on Saturday...which meant I will be staying another day. Not sure how I felt/feel about that but thought I could save some money. Later that night, actualy last night, we headed to the store to pick up some chicken. On the way he casually said to me that $30 would be cool for me staying at his place. I was taken a back by this but kind of expected it at the same time. I got my words together and told him that I completely wanted to contribute and pay for food or whatever but the premise of me coming with him was so I would not have to pay for a place in the city. Plus I told him, I was intending to leave and he asked me to stay. These people are definately poor and I was going to give them some money either way but I did not like how it went down. He agreed with what I was saying and did not get mad or anything. I paid for the chicken for dinner.

There is not much to do at his house, so today he took me down to Panama City and gave me a little tour. Details on that later but it is a cool city. Lots of people and sky scrappers. Say the line for the panama canal and some of the city sights. We are headed to church in a little while and i am hoping to get a haircut after I am done.

5 am bus to san blas tomorrow and 3 days and 2 nights on the beach. Looking forward to it! I have been in contact with the columbian family and hope to stay there Tuesday. Got to Go

Posted by DondeNathan 11:42 Archived in Panama

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Way to not get hustled.

by Afor

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