9-12th October 2016
Panama City. I only have two points of reference for this place. Panama Canal. Though I’m not even sure where I heard about that and also on Prison Break, the TV show. I may even be wrong here. I believe Panama was their getaway location. Where there’s nothing around, no extradition laws and sunny beaches.
Turns out there’s mosquitos too!
I arrived in Panama with high expectations. The hostel had a 9.5/10. Some of the best places I stayed had lower ratings. Then someone pointed out to me it did only have four ratings. That might be why. Still, optimistic as ever I turned up at the hostel.
A photo of the Beatles. Good start. The hostel had some sort of mini café at the front of house which served any one of the street. It was pretty chic. The rooms were set up well, a bath towel and a hand towel were in the lockers (which came with a lock which is unusual!) and they were clean with aircon.
Why all this preamble? Because I didn’t really do all that much in Panama. I caught my breath, did some writing. A little bit of drawing. It was relaxing. There wasn’t really much to do.
I couldn’t miss out on the Panama Canal though. Find out what all the fuss is about.
As usual it was a feat of engineering that was remarkable. It cost a lot of lives because medicine and the like wasn’t as advanced as it is and many people died of malaria and the like. Does make you wonder if we accomplished a lot of these things too soon at the cost of too many people. Or is it because we accomplished things like this it pushed us to greater things like treating malaria, which we might not otherwise have done? Who knows.
The canal works with a number of locks at different levels. It cuts off the water and then raises or lowers the vessels to the next height. This happens a number of times before the vessel has crossed the entire waterway. It’s incredible to watch. It must have been an unbelievable accomplishment at the time!
With my one touristy thing done there was nothing left to do but relax, walk around and go eat out.
This pretty much sums up my findings. Plush, new buildings, roads, buses, always being contrasted with these odd, quirky, derelict houses just spaciously spread out amongst the place.
Aside from a few mosquito bites it’s been a nice little stay in Panama. Thankfully, it’s not too long and it’s time now to fly to Peru and find my sixth wonder of the world!