A Gorgeous Morning Bike Ride

Some friends and I have had so much fun biking that we’ve decided to go out every other weekend. Today we met at the intersection of Via Boquete and the road to Caldera and drove east a few miles. We found a place to park and continued southeast on our bikes for a couple miles, and then turned south towards Gualaca.

I could tell you how beautiful it was but the photos can speak for themselves.

My friends like to set out early before it gets too hot. I grumble about getting up before my usual time but when I get out there, especially in the beauty we saw today, I forget all about grumbling.

As we headed back the clouds were changing the views every time I looked up, and I couldn’t resist stopping for photo after photo.

Sometimes I still can’t believe that I get to live here. This is an amazingly beautiful country! Thank you John and Susan for biking with me this morning and for choosing such a fantastic route.

 

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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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36 Responses to A Gorgeous Morning Bike Ride

  1. Marilyn Chadwick says:

    You’ve got me sitting here almost in tears from the sheer beauty & wishin’ I was there! Can’t find words to thank u enough for sharing these incredible mountains… what a treasure…

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    • Oh my, I’m so glad you enjoyed them so much. We got lucky with both the scenery and the beautiful morning.
      Do you have any plans to come to Panama? It’s such a beautiful country. I fell in love with it the first time I saw those green mountains through the window of the plane on our first visit.

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      • Marilyn Chadwick says:

        Yes, I do plan to come to Chiriqui, hopefully in a few months… have been researching several countries for several years, then settled on Panama & have been researching it for a couple years as well… I’m almost certain that somewhere in the beautiful mountains of Chiriqui awaits my new home :), but also haven’t completely ruled out the Santa Fe area of Veraguas. I am in the midst of renovating a house here, getting ready to move & getting rid of “stuff”. Don’t have much help, so it’s taking much longer than I’d like. Very scary it is, too – making such changes as a recently retired single gal, but I am so determined to make a new, less stressful, less expensive & more adventurous life for myself! And gorgeous mts. are at the top of my list of prerequisites! Your pics are making me fall in love too! Wish I could just click my heels & everything would be done here, & I’d be there tomorrow…

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        • I haven’t been to Santa Fe but have heard it is beautiful there too. We like Chiriqui because there’s a city and all that goes with it, and that produce is grown here so it’s always available, and though we don’t want to live in Boquete activities there are accessible when we want them and it’s so beautiful. I’m sure you’ll find the place that’s just right for you.

          Oh yes, the house and stuff, I remember all too well. There were days I just wanted to light a match to it all and walk away. But when you finally get through it all, it’s such a feeling of freedom to leave it behind. I figured what is the worst that can happen. We’ll come and find it isn’t for us. Then we just come up with another plan and move on. But for us it worked out better than I ever hoped. I hope it’s the same for you!

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          • susie says:

            Love your attitude Kris!!! Brad & I feel exactly the same way..you can always change your plans……they aren’t made in stone ..but for know we can’t wait until we get to live there full time!!!!

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          • Marilyn Chadwick says:

            I’m kinda on the same page as you, Kris. Wanna live near a decent sized city with all its amenities… and definitely would love living where there’s tons of fresh produce all year! And I also love your attitude about nothing is cast in stone… that’s how I look at it too – if need be, I can just have a travel adventure ’til I land on the right place! 🙂

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  2. It was our pleasure! Such a lovely morning and we enjoyed sharing it with you. See you soon, amiga!

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  3. Reblogged this on Latitude Adjustment and commented:
    Wonderful morning bike ride through the Chiriqui countryside with our good friend and fellow blogger Kris!

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  4. Linda says:

    So beautiful Kris! I love the early mornings.
    Are there bikes to rent when I come and join all of you? Guess I better get in shape haha.
    Sending hugs for. Oregon xx

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  5. jim and nena says:

    Hola Kris,
    It took me almost a year to get to Chiriqui from the canal zone, back in the day. I saw all the beaches and sights near to Panama City and it was fun and enjoyable. Then I met Nena and decided to visit her hometown in Boquete. I was technically AWOL on a 3 day weekend because the distance exceeded the military’s idea of weekend leave but I would have traded incarceration for the views I saw. Panama is like a dozen different countries all in an area the size of South Carolina.

    If I might be so forward as to pass along some opinions to Marilyn C. on Santa Fe, research carefully as the hype from International Living has shifted from Boquete to Santa Fe in recent years. Reports from real folks living there are invaluable, here is one: http://life.coffeemountaininn.com/top-5-things-to-consider-before-moving-to-santa-fe-panama/

    As for getting rid of stuff in preparing for the move, I believe that everyone should “start over” right where they are at. Unload everything you can possibly live without as if you were leaving the planet, then just stay where you are for a bit. All of us tend to collect SO much baggage that we do not realize how it holds us back. Not being owned by all our stuff is very stress-relieving. The lesson I learn with every trip to Panama is how well many Panamanians live with so much less stuff. George Carlin had an entire comedy routine about having stuff and it was hilarious but also true. jim

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    • Thanks for the info and the link. I emailed it to Marilyn to be sure she doesn’t miss it.

      I also got rid of all my stuff and it was so liberating. I arrive with only a suitcase and computer bag. I shipped 8 boxes with my husband’s stuff, mostly books that I haven’t used them like I thought I would. The sewing machine is the main thing, but I could have replaced it here.

      George Carlin is hilarious on many subjects, including the stuff one. The video didn’t seem to come through with your comment but I found the link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MvgN5gCuLac

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      • Just watched the George Carlin video on stuff. Hillarious. I think I’ll include it on a post I’ve been contemplating putting up on my blog, along with photographs of all my stuff that I have to…oh dear me – no! (You have no idea – Grandpa’s tools, Granny’s knitting needles, Daddy’s chests, Mummy’s lamps and rocking chairs, and sewing machine, and China, and…oh wait, I should be saving all this for my blog. :o)

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      • Marilyn Chadwick says:

        Thanks so much for following up on this, Kris! I sincerely appreciate! What a hoot – I’m still crackin’ up! 😀 And btw, I have the “sewing machine dilemma” too, only it’s my mom’s antique Packard – her wedding present from dad. Learned to sew on it as a little girl, and it still sews better than any modern machine ever could. Can’t part with it. But that’s why I’m keeping a small house here, at least in the beginning. Just for the really important “stuff”, lol. And just in case, down the road, America comes to her senses (not holdin’ my breath on that one)…

        You’re an inspiration, & it’s my dream to arrive much as you did – with just a suitcase & computer bag…. wish me luck!

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        • I did pack a few boxes of stuff that got sent to my kids’ houses, photos, few baby clothes, old family albums, few momentoes, and the newspapers of the first man on the moon and the Kennedy assassination.
          I don’t think I could part with that sewing machine either. Mine doesn’t have a history. It’s just old but I still got it down here.

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          • Marilyn Chadwick says:

            Yep – some things we just can’t let go of. Glad you were able to bring your sewing machine.

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      • jim and nena says:

        Stuff would be my downfall moving to Panama (or anywhere), Kris. My stuff is like your sewing machine (Nena has 5, down from a dozen at times), except for me it is tools. Nena and I have been married 45 years and have remodeled every home we have had. We drive 2nd hand cars which I repair as needed (Nena will not retire her 1997 Ford). So, knowing that I can not get quality tools there, I would have to move a container just for tools and then try and find a place to put them all. On the plus side, with enough tools, we are completely self-sufficient except for materials. Nena can paint, mud drywall, lay tile, hang wallpaper, and most other remodel tasks so all we need is a space. 🙂
        jim

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    • Jim – love your stories, and your advice – Wendy.

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    • Marilyn Chadwick says:

      Wow, Jim. What a GREAT post, and what a lucky gal I am to have found this blog! 😀 Your feedback is priceless & your Santa Fe blog link has made my decision for me! Actually, the very first point in the blog made the decision – no health care or emergency care in Santa Fe. Not ideal for a retiree, eh?! And I really love your comment, “I would have traded incarceration for the views I saw”… 🙂 as a dyed-in-the-wool mountain girl I can so relate! Love your advice about “stuff” too, and the Carlin video! Omg.. so hilarious & so true! Can’t thank you enough!

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      • jim and nena says:

        Hola Marilyn, I’m glad you got the chance to get firsthand info on Santa Fe; it is a great place to visit for an experience of what Panama was like in the past before all the migration happened. I wish everyone would come to Panama to see the beauty and meet the people and decide if Panama is right for them or not. Those that can handle Panama as it is should stay and enjoy. I have the advantage of visiting whenever the madness of the USA becomes unbearable.
        The “stuff” thing is really dear to me now. My younger son is moving to a new house and has 3 girls, 8, 6, and 4. The amount of “stuff” I am helping to pack appears to be endless at this point? I pack one room, the next day the girls have it filled again? Prayers for my health are appreciated; my sanity is beyond saving at this point.
        jim

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        • Marilyn Chadwick says:

          LOL! Prayers goin’ up, Jim. 🙂 I feel your pain (on a smaller scale). And I can relate to your earlier comment about tools… I’m also a DIYer & have quite the collection… sad to hear you can’t get good ones in Panama, but good to know that upfront.

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      • I talked to someone today who has been to Santa Fe. She confirmed that it is beautiful but quite undeveloped and with not much going on there. Of course you could always settle somewhere, go visit and spend some time and if it is what you want, then move there. Even if you land in Boquete you might do some fine tuning in case your spot is too chilly, wet, noisy, etc.

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        • Marilyn Chadwick says:

          Yes, very good insight, Kris. But with no healthcare there, I’ve already decided I’d rather be somewhere in the mountains around David, or maybe between David & Boquete. 🙂 And maybe take day trips to Santa Fe from time to time! I hope to eventually see all the mountainous areas of Panama… thanks for the feedback!

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          • How is your Spanish? Dolega is a nice town we considered ourselves but very Panamanian, and there are many other options on your way up the mountain as well. I suppose you could get by anywhere without Spanish but it is so much easier when you know some, and so much more fun.

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            • Marilyn Chadwick says:

              Thanks for the tip – I’ll have a look at Dolega. My Spanish is very minimal at the moment, but I do have every intention of learning. I want to be part of the culture, not the perpetual outsider! I have a “Basic Spanish for Travelers” mini-course that will at least get me communicating, if only in limited phrases. And I can always take a class once there, if need be. What I’ll probably end up doing is initially moving somewhere near other expats until I “get my bearings”, then explore & see what speaks to me.

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  6. OH my goodness Kris – those photographs remind me so much of the area I grew up in, in India – it’s like being home again. Incredible. Thank you for sharing. – Wendy

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  7. Magical indeed. What a magnificent place to live!

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