Day 56 – Wednesday, August 21, 2013
We hired a young taxi driver, Carlos Vidal, to take us on a 2 hour tour of the area around Volcan, Panama. First, we had bagels, poached eggs, ham and cheese along with some fresh El Salvador coffee to start the day off right. Our friend Victor joined us on the tour. Julie notes “Victor decided to stay one more day before heading to his new place. Probably because the thought of leaving us makes him too sad. Or could be that his place won’t be ready until tomorrow. You decide.”
The area is quite mountainous with rich volcanic soil great for growing vegetables. The mountains are cultivated by horse and single furrow plough as high as they can go. The valleys are farmed with more modern tractors and equipment – largely Massey Ferguson equipment. The mountain fed rivers are fast running, pristine, clear and clean, and abundant. Most of the hillside land is irrigated.
As has been the trend, it rained heavily this afternoon. The power went out in the town the same time Julie and I headed out for lunch in our rain gear. So, it was back to the camper for delicious chicken and guacamole on cheese buns. Yummy stuff.
We took 120 photos today but will only be able to show a sample of the scenery and people of the area.
Julie notes “Peekaboo”.
Carlos and Julie at one of our stops.
A local elementary school. The kids are all in school this time of year. Seems kind of weird to see kids going to school. Most of the kids we’ve seen wear a uniform.
Some ladies in traditional native dress.
Laundry day at this house. Julie notes “It is laundry day, every day it seems as we’ve driven through the last few countries. Laundry hung on fences, roof edges, hedges, and of course clothes lines. I think it may stay out there getting re-rinsed each day until the rainy season ends although I did see 3 cute little kids laughing and jumping up and grabbing laundry way above their heads as the first big drops of rain started falling. We have seen women down at the river washing the clothes on rocks. Hard work. I am once again reminded of how spoiled I am with my all of my automated devices. I vow to enjoy doing laundry from now on. (no-one’s going to hold me to that are they?)”
Applying fertilizer by hand.
Carrot harvest. Julie notes “If you want to really make a Panamanian cab driver laugh just try saying zanahorias (carrots) a few times. We were sure we were saying it just like he was.”
Come home sober to this place or else!
Our campsite at the municipal police compound. Julie notes “Home sweet home. It’s all part of the adventure…”
It can really rain here. A small river forms in the ditch in a few minutes.
….carry on folks, the muleskinner and his sidekick