Cloudy mornings and sunny afternoons have been the norm around here, which means lazy mornings reading in the hammock and afternoons swimming. We’ve been spending a lot of time in the kitchen, recreating dishes we’ve tried along the way. We’ve been working a bit and I’ve been pondering what our new home will bring my career when we’re back in DC. We’ve been getting eaten alive by chitters [no-see-’ems] and shooing cockroaches out of our room left & right when we retire for the evening. We’ve been seeing more jellyfish than I’d like to think about and plankton glow in the water at night. We’ve been kayaking and enjoying the solitude it brings, even if its a little rocky when we [ahem, Jason] are lowering into the boat and tip into the water.
Our next destination is finally coming together, with an adventure & stopover in San Jose in between. We’re still enjoying the Panama house though. Even though we don’t have much opportunity to explore the town, or much of the country outside of the shuttle for that matter, we’re fortunate to be surrounded by a beautiful setting and fun people with whom to share our time. I’m looking forward to this weekend, our last few days to enjoy this gorgeous place before moving on to another amazing part of Costa Rica.
The last month has really been a healthy break for us. I think its hard for some people to understand taking this much time off, but between work, school, and struggling to keep up a social life, it doesn’t allow much time to truly appreciate what we’re given. When life becomes so busy that you can’t even remember what you ate for breakfast, that’s a problem. And that’s where we were before we left the country to come to Central America. It doesn’t always have to be as extreme as taking a full two month hiatus from the rest of the world to simply relax and read a book, but for us, at this time, it was necessary. And I’m so thankful that we even had the option to do so. I can only try my hardest and hope we can keep some serenity in our daily lives when we are back in the hustle ‘n bustle of the US.
Its not all sunbathing & rainbows down here, either. Living down here is certainly not for the faint of heart. There are cockroaches & giant spiders on our bags at night. We use a composting outhouse toilet that is a short walk away, and if you don’t have the courage to walk down the path in the middle of the night, then you’re squatting in the grass. When snorkeling, you’ll face at least 5 jellyfish at any time of the day because, for some reason, this is jellyfish country. We use a communal kitchen that forces us to tango with at least 3 or 4 other people when making dinner and a shower that is freezing cold most days. Nothing dries and everything eventually starts smelling like fish or something unknown.
But, still, these are all things that you trade for amazing sunsets, dolphins splashing around at night, comradery formed here on the pier, warm winds that rock you to sleep, and crazy creatures you’d never discover anywhere else. You learn to be patient, kind, and brave. You let go of selfishness and embrace freedom. You love wholly and only half miss what you left behind.
This is what you experience. And that’s what traveling is all about.
I wouldn’t trade this for anything.