Friday 10/19/2012 from David, Panama

Caffeine? Freaking out in Panama??
Pick up one thing and figure out what to do with it. Relax. Sit down. Write some more. Pick up one more thing and figure out what to do with it. Relax. Read a little. Everything is all right. Settle down. This is how my day is starting. I am feeling very anxious. Was it the 2 cups of coffee? I was fine before breakfast. Is it being out of touch with my husband and all the people who are important to me? Is it just being in a state of transition? Maybe it is all catching up with me? I think it is mostly the coffee. I know I don’t do well with caffeine. This is Panamanian coffee boiled in a pan since I don’t have a coffee maker yet. Maybe it’s industrial strength caffeine. Too much caffeine makes me really nuts. I am definitely feeling nuts.
I’m in a state of disorganization, not able to find my things, not able to find places in town, not sure how to do some basic things, and having to do everything in another language. One of my tires was low yesterday. Where do you get tires fixed? What is the word for tire? Can I make myself understood? Can I understand the answers? Can I find my dictionary??
Pick up one thing and figure out what to do with it. Get organized. Take control of my space. I am no longer living out of a suitcase. This is my home now. Use the empty boxes to organize things. Look up the word for tire. Ask the friendly neighbors. Do not drink any more coffee. I’ve been getting things done for a week here. I can continue to get things done. It doesn’t all have to be today. Poco a poco. (little by little). No more coffee.
I started painting the house. It feels good to be doing something familiar, something to make the house look good. Pull the nails. Fill the holes. Trim the edges. Roll the walls. Things are getting more organized. Boxes are in use. Music is playing on the computer. The coffee is starting to wear off. I am getting my exercise. My step ladder is a borrowed plastic chair. Step up. Step down.
There are different sounds here. Panamanian houses have tin roofs. When it heats up it “pops” and sometimes it sounds like there are coconuts falling on the roof. Usually though it is more like acorns. I hear lots of bird songs, none of which are familiar to me. There are occasional roosters in the distance. And, there are dogs! There is a pack of half a dozen dogs that seem to hang out on this street, and they started barking at sunup. One is in heat so I hope that is the cause of the excitement, and they quiet down when she settles down. In the afternoon one of the neighbors was hollering at them and throwing rocks. I haven’t seen the dogs since.
In the afternoon there was no water. I asked the neighbor who didn’t seem worried, and explained that something was going on and it would be back on later. I think someone is fixing or building something in the area but I couldn’t understand what he said very well. The internet people didn’t come today so I went out to the store at the end of the day and sure enough, when I returned the water was back on. I still haven’t bought gas tanks so it was a cold shower, but it felt good. I made it through another day and I’ve settled down. There will be no more coffee.
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About Kris Cunningham

We live in David, Chiriqui Provence, Republic of Panama! This blog is about some of our experiences in our new country.
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