Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Outbreak of Viral Meningitis in David

Critica reports that the Ministry of Health has just announced an outbreak of viral meningitis among children in David that it considers epidemic; there have been 63 confirmed cases as opposed to 55 in the same period last year.  


Linda & Clyde said...

Hello Joyce -
I would like to introduce ourselves - we are Linda & Clyde Keith from Poteet, Tx about 30 miles southwest of San Antonio, Tx.
We found you through a link on the Chiriqui Chatter by Don Ray and have loved reading you daily - it's been fun, informative, and educational.
Clyde went to Panama in Nov 2005 for a 10 day visit to the Chiriqui
area and brought home more than 500 photos of the area - beautiful. We have been watching the real estate in the area ever since for both entertainment and a little hope through most of the area is out of our reach financially.
We live in the country on an acre,
and when we moved out here 28 years ago it was a little like moving to Panama for us. Partyline phone, no sewer - on septic systems, electricity was not exactly dependable. But then, the population was small and we are not "social" people, so we enjoyed the privacy and solitude except for an occasional foray to the grocery store and going to work. We both are now retired from the Attorney Generals' office, child support enoforcement.
We have one daughter, age 40, and one grandbaby - a little girl five
weeks old. Becoming grandparents in our 60's has been a real experience.
We are animal lovers as well -
have 1 yellow lab, 5 dachhunds,
3 chihuahua's, two cats and an assortment of barn swallows and quail and dove and other creatures living here as well. Any thoughts on transporting the dogs and cats to Panama or any lead you might give us to look into? where we go our babies go.
We read, we putz around the yard,
we cook and eat and enjoy the freedow that retirement has provided. We read your blog and enjoy your wit...
Know that you are being appreciated Joyce - even if you are only writing for yourself. We really love it. Linda & Clyde

Joyce said...

Hi, Linda and Clyde!

How delightful to meet you two! Anytwo who have 9 dogs, two cats and assorted wildlife are definitely the right kind of people. And I admire the work you both did--I'm afraid that I'm somewhat a nut for social justice. God bless.

There are people who do this for a living here in Panamá--acting as agents and assisting with paperwork, setting up appointments with the official vet, etc- but I can't tell you who's in it anymore. You need to check with the airlines for their requirements. The Panamanian ones were quite reasonable. You need to check with your nearest consulate for what they are. I doubt that they've changed much. The airlines will be your real headache.

As far as moving here is concerned, though--you really MUST spend more than 10 days here to get a real idea of whether or not you want to move here. Yes, the country is beautiful, but there are real drawbacks for most people. TEN DAYS IS NOWHERE NEAR ENOUGH. You'd spend more time deciding what refrigerator to buy. You are rash beyond words if make such a huge decision on so little time in the area. I highly recommend--urge--that people spend a minimum of 6 months, including the worst of the rainy season, before deciding whether or not to move. I know that's tough but people come here with stars in their eyes and wind up deeply unhappy, not knowing what hit them, when they have to deal with the reality of life here.

Living in Texas, you may already have overcome one barrier, and that is speaking Spanish. Perhaps you already do? if so, I consider that a must if you are ever to be comfortable here. Also, you probably have a good idea of Hispanic culture, which is essential to understanding this country. That helps.

But nothing takes the place of spending extended time here, nothing. Maybe you could come down for several extended vacations, say a month at a time at different times of the year. Try to stay out of the tourist areas. Rent someplace in David, for instance, or any place other than Boquete. Do go there, though, to see what that end of the ex-pat spectrum is like. Ignore the hype, try to ignore those who are vying for the Ugliest American in Panama for the Month awards. It's a high-crime area and getting worse, which is another reason to avoid it.

Oh well, time to stop ranting. Please, please don't make a decision on too-little information.

I'm glad that you find my blog entertaining. From time to time, so do I, even!

Drop by again.


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