Thursday, May 11, 2017

Food Fest

A local charity hosts a food festival each year in Santiago, and representatives of each country are invited to participate in a parade and sell food to raise money. We agreed to bring mac and cheese and after watching so many parades here, the girls finally got to be in one! We had no idea what a huge, fun event it was going to be. Hanging out with friends, eating good food, costumes, music and dancing and seeing so many people out and about made me love Santiago a little more. Our booth's net profit was something like $12, but we also bought lots of food from more profitable countries like Spain (sangria), Mexico (tacos) and Venezuela (cupcakes).

Monday, May 8, 2017

More Scenes

More from life in Panama, including a Monday morning national anthem ceremony (with a Justin Beiber song in Spanish) a cultural show I came upon on a work trip to the capital. The chicken family when they first started visiting us, C at the mall food court, a group of girls who attended a conversation class about Peanut Butter, and a work horse we passed on the way to school.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Skirt Story

One day during the first week of school, I had an epiphany. Maybe the school uniform skirt was so long on N because all the other moms had had theirs hemmed! So I set out to find a seamstress. As it always seems to happen, the first person I asked was the right one. It turned out the mother of my colleague does alterations on the side. So E gathered the skirts and we followed my friend to her mom's house after work. It was really lovely to see a snippet of a Panamanian family's life this way. N changed her clothes in a bedroom, and we met my friend's brother and son. Her mom offered us cashew fruit juice (good at first, but then weird, we agreed), and sewed while we waited.

Afterward, we needed to have the thousands little pleats pressed so that she could were one skirt to school the next day. I stopped into a place I had seen and asked for the service in Spanish. It was the first time someone laughed at me/my Spanish. It hurt a little, maybe because she didn't offer correction, but we still got the job done. And the laundromat was photo worthy, so I forgave the worker.

These are the details I love, when I get to experience real, day-in-day-out Panamanian life.