Flu Shots

I went out again yesterday!  Since we got our US stimulus money we decided to replace our broken air conditioner. We’re doing OK but the warmer afternoons are more comfortable with AC. So, I went to the ATM for some cash. I’ve heard that something funny is going on with all the ATM’s and you can only take out $200. I found this to be true, but you can immediately do another $200 transaction. Rinse and repeat until you have what you need. Thankfully Schwab reimburses ATM fees.

While I was there, I went for a flu shot. They have nurses at stations around the Terronal shopping mall. The one closest to the street had a line of more than a dozen cars waiting for the drive up option. Another in front to DoIt Center had maybe 6-7 people with children waiting. The other three in front of Panafoto had no waiting at all. The nurse gave me a painless shot, took my name and basic info for my card that says I’ve had the shot, and that was all. I saw names with $1 after them on her list, but maybe mine was free because I’m retirement age?

Panama is encouraging everyone to get flu shots. They started with the people at risk because of age or medical condition. Now everyone is asked to get one and they are making it as accessible and easy as possible. They don’t want to care for a lot of people sick with the flu in addition to the pandemic.

Everyone, every single person wore a mask, everyone in cars, everyone walking, children, elderly, everyone. Oh and speaking of children, this yesterday was the first day children were allowed out. They can only go out with a caregiver during the hours allowed for that caregiver, but they can play a bit, and get some fresh air and sunshine.

An aside, Pricesmart on Monday. Everyone had masks. The cashiers now have plastic enclosures to keep them safe. Customer temperatures were checked going on and hands were squirted with hand sanitizer. There wasn’t a crowd or a line so I was lucky to get in and out fairly quickly. Word now is that you won’t be allowed in with open toe sandals.

It’s interesting to see the contrast between attitudes here and in the USA. We are under much tighter restrictions, as I have described in earlier posts. Panamanians, like people everywhere, find the restrictions of the quarantine difficult and tedious, or really stressful if they aren’t earning much needed money. But they are generally very patient. If anything, they worry that Panama is trying to open the country too fast. News from the US says they are hurrying to reopen the country more quickly but many say its too slow, and many others say it shouldn’t have been closed down at all.

I’ve been spending less and less time on Facebook and social media. It seems like everyone has their own opinions and versions of the truth and wants to fight with anyone who has different opinions and versions of the truth. I think this only adds stress and negativity. We are all learning as we go and there is no definitive rule book for managing a pandemic.

Be kind to each other! Arguing with each other doesn’t change minds, make anyone feel better, or change decisions made by government and officials. It’s a stressful time for everyone and we all need to take care of each other.

 

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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10 Responses to Flu Shots

  1. wrj6 says:

    Thanks for another good blog update. I wish you all the best with the flu shot. I had one a few months ago and several hours later went into a catatonic fit. This was a really horrible experience.

    I’d like to thank you for last Saturday’s interview with Jackie Lange. It was the best interview we’ve had with her yet. I look forward to meeting you one day.

    Warren R. Johnson
    meanderingalong@gmail.com

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  2. Wow, thank you. I enjoyed talking with Jackie and it was easy.
    My flu shot was yesterday and I’m fine. As a nurse I was required to get one every year and never had a problem, thank goodness. Yeah, I would never go near one again if I’d had your experience. Sheesh, sorry you had to go through that.
    Yes, when this is all over and if you are in Panama, let me know and we’ll plan something 🙂

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  3. carole says:

    How did you get your stimulus check, was it a check or thru SS? It will be months before we get ours.

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  4. Malcolm Buck says:

    Thank you Kris. I have my pensionado visa and I am waiting for Panama to open up. Back home in US we are impatient and may have to pay a terrible price. Thank you for quoting Dalai Lama one of my favorite spiritual teacher. Yes kindness is good for our own health and well-being of our soul. I just finished a book written by Desmond Tutu and Dalai Lama together (they are both great buddies) that compassion brings us great happiness and joy. The book was written in 2016 when Desmond Tutu visited Dalai Lama in Dharamsala India to celebrate his 80th birthday. Beautiful book. I will send you the exact title if you are interested. Thanks for sharing your newsletter or adventure (whatever) with us. I am always looking forward to your letter to learn something new.,

    Regards and Best wishes to you and you husband,

    Malcolm Buck

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  5. chugwa says:

    Thanks, Kris for a great write up.

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  6. Kristin Lyman says:

    Hi Kris, I agree with you about staying off of social media and face book, just too much arguing and sniping back and forth. I go on Expats in Coronado and I read your posts and that’s it. I don’t need the negativity in my life. I am just waiting now for Panama to open back up. I have a plane ticket for July 16th I got it for $93.00 when the airline prices took a dive and now I can’t wait. I have been at home for 3 months now and the University has graciously allowed to to delay my retirement until July 1st so I can keep drawing my pay while working from home. I know I will arrive during the wet season but I am even looking forward to the afternoon storms, power outages with a good book and my beautiful baby Shepard snoozing at my feet. I am glad to hear you are still doing great and look forward to visiting with you again and watching the band.

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    • 2 months out… I dunno, it could happen! They are opening the country very slowly though, and who knows how it will go as they move forward so thank goodness the university is still keeping you working. I actually prefer the wet season. Mornings are beautiful, and if you can get any running around done by mid afternoon, then you can just sit back and enjoy the rain later in the day. It’s cooler and much greener in the wet season. Maybe bring some Luci solar lights with you just in case.

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