Just Another Day in Panama

It’s been a really nice day, sunny, light breeze, not too hot, very enjoyable. I’m sitting here reflecting on my day, just a ordinary typical day in my life here (as ordinary and typical as any day can be in a different country).

The teak harvesting continues. They arrived about 8:15-8:30 this morning. It is now 5:30 PM and they are still at work. I caught the truck leaving yesterday. If you missed my previous posts about this work in progress and want to see more, the posts are here and here. It’s been quite interesting to watch.

The guys who load the wood (by hand!) on to the truck all pile on tip when they drive off. I don't know where they do, but before long they are back to load more.

The guys who load the wood (by hand!) on to the truck all pile on top when they drive off. I don’t know where they go, but before long they are back to load more.

When I went through my photos I saw I had caught my neighbor Lucho who was also watching the truck leave. He said he did that work when he was young and it was really hard. After a year he knew he needed to find a different line of work (he is now a welder who makes security gates for doors and windows, and also does a variety of construction projects). He said the guys doing the heavy lifting make $20/day, or at most $25/day. I also talked to the very strong little guy this morning. He said he is making good money but he’s heading up the whole operation.

Lucho watching the truck. I have such nice neighbors I smile just looking at the photo. He's smart, hard working, sensible, and has a heart of gold.

Lucho watching the truck. I have such nice neighbors.  He’s smart, hard working, sensible, and has a heart of gold, and just looking at the photo makes me smile.

I hadn’t been on my bike in a while, so I set off for a ride and some errands this morning. As you leave our neighborhood, there is another neighborhood on the other side of the street with a lot of new activity.

There is a big field south of our neighborhood, and once in a while they hire three guys with machetes to cut the grass. It usually takes them three days. That kind of labor is very cheap, so they probably figure it makes more sense to do this than hire a machine that could cut it in a couple hours. What hard work out in the hot sun though.


Next I headed over to the old Via Boquete and saw this new sign. It looks like a large apartment building is going in there, also in a neighborhood of single family homes. It’s crazy all the construction and growth going on around here!


I was headed to the art school since I hadn’t been there since my trip. I had a good time saying hi to the other teachers but my painting teacher was out doing other things, so I’ll stop by another time. On the way back I passed another view of the construction in progress for the new bus terminal and shopping center.


No tire basura = don’t throw trash. Se vende = for sale. This would be a nice lot with a pretty view.

That’s about it for this morning. I have a cold, nothing serious, just a very runny and sneezy nose but I’ve lost my desire to fill my afternoon with activity.  I’ve been mostly sitting and reading and I’ve found some interesting articles. You have been warned 😀 There may be more off topic posts.

It’s now 6PM. Joel went to Boquete this morning for band practice for tomorrow’s gig. Then he had an afternoon thing with his other group, and now suddenly they have also been asked to play at a restaurant tonight! It looks like the teak people are wrapping it up for today. A couple of the pickup trucks have left, and they have parked the tractor in Lucho’s yard (huh? Maybe he’s keeping an eye on it for them if they aren’t coming tomorrow). It looks like I have a whole baked chicken all to myself! 😀

Life in Panama…

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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8 Responses to Just Another Day in Panama

  1. Laureen says:

    Hope you are back to feeling 100% soon!


  2. Lorraine Bradley says:

    Thanks for posting Kris. It’s always nice to read your posts and see the wonderful greenery, flowers, birds, bugs and animals of Panama. Some of our days are filled with activity and some are meant for recuperation. Everything you write about is interesting. Enjoy your writing hobby.


  3. ME BE in Panama says:

    Thanks for filling us in on life in David. It might be interesting to know where all that teak is headed. China? Canada? Somewhere in Panama? I’m guessing that wood is verrrry expensive stuff, and will bring a lot of $$$$ to someone. Just wondering. Hope you feel better.


    • One of my neighbors says it’s going to China. Another said the wood brings $2.50 a board foot, 300-350 board feet per tree, 70 trees… yes, Mrs Romero will be smiling all the way to the bank. (She is the family of the Romero supermarkets that you probably saw when you were here. They no longer own them but they still have the name.) But also, the trees are 35 years old so she has waited a long time for this payoff.


  4. Angie says:

    Kris, good evening from the Seattle area. I was looking around online for some fun travel ideas for my family this December and ran across your blog. What a wonderful adventure you are on. If you are open I would love to ask you a few questions about the area- mostly about ease of navigation between certain spots.
    Take care and I hope somebody is enjoying a good deposit for that lovely teak.


    • Hi Angie. I was just in your area visiting one of my daughters. It’s so beautiful there.
      Yes, I would be happy to help if I can. I’ll email you so you can write to me directly.
      I just answered another comment with more info about the wood. Yes, she should be very happy!


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