July 27, 2015: We Are Now Stranded Without a Car

Today is my first day working from Panama.  Our Internet connection here is pretty good.  It is not super fast, but it does appear to be quite solid.  I am getting something like 3Mb/s down and 1Mb/s up.  Good enough for work and for the girls to be streaming their videos and we appear to have pretty good coverage throughout the condo on the wifi and there is TMobile 3G in most of the condo too.  Our power here is not super solid, we have gotten a few momentary brown outs and today we had a less than five second blackout.  Nothing major, but the power is less than ideal, but nothing that is surprising for rural Panama.

It is super bright, sunny and hot today.  We spent the day inside, I tried working from the living room today using the low coffee table most of the day and leaning over to work on it.  That worked okay but is not going to be ideal for a long term work position.

At noon I went out with the car, our white Toyota Yaris from National to return it.  I drove into Rio Hato, which we have not been in before, just a few hundred meters west of our resort.  I was very lucky to find that there is a nice gas station right there.  Like in Europe, they use 95 octane fuel here.  But unlike Europe with is 95 for low grade and 98 for high, here it is 95 for high and 91 for low.  So weird how every region has different fuel.

Getting the car fueled up was easy.  That could easily have been really hard so I am quite happy about that.   Then I drove west through town to scout it out just because this was my last window of time with the Yaris before turning it in and we would otherwise have no idea what lay just a mile to the west.  Not much, is the answer, but there is a village there but there does not appear to be anything to do in it.

To return the car I had to go back east just a little ways to just before the airport and go down to the resort there.  This turned out to be super easy and finding National was no problem at all.  It was five till one when I pulled in but they were closed for siesta or something, even thought their online hours said that they were open all day.  So I had to drive back home and continue working for two more hours before returning around three to drop off the car.

Everything went smoothly with the drop off and they drove me back to the condo which made everything very easy.

I worked for the rest of the day.  Everyone is still a little bit tired from all of the travel and stuff so we were still taking it pretty easy today.  This is nice having nothing planned for the whole week and nothing to do but live our normal lives here at the condo.  Today is Monday, Paul and Bob are supposed to be arriving in Panama City on Thursday but they are going to hang out with family and friends there and I will not see them until Saturday morning, is the current plan.

So at this point, we have no car.  It is just us living on the beach in more or less the middle of nowhere in rural Coclé, Panamá.  This will be interesting.