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----- Panama ---------------

Panama the southern most country in Central America is home to the world famous Panama Canal. I never really had any desire to go to Panama, but Panama was on our itinerary so we decided to make the most of it. It was difficult to see so much poverty in Panama. Every place that I have visited in the Caribbean has been impoverished, and I am sure the Caribbean is a luxury destination when you're barricaded in an all inclusive resort. If you want my opinion, I would save my money and use it to go to Europe again or Japan.

When in Panama we did visit the Panama Canal and drove through the countryside to a small village called Porto-Bello. First, it was interesting watching the ships raise up in the locks and venture through the canal. When in Colòn we had the opportunity to visit with the local Embera Indians. It was great that they spoke Spanish and not a tribal language only. I had a nice conversation with them discussing what life is like for them. Although very simple in appearance they looked very happy. These people have these dances and songs that they perform while wearing next to nothing. I felt as though I was on National Geographic.

When we visited Porto-Bello we visited with more Embera Indians, saw Spanish forts lined with Cannons to keep out pirates like Captain Drake among others. Although the day was rainy it had a mystic feel to it seeing the low clouds hugging the green jungled mountains.

From the first locks looking out to sea

The Gatun locks on the Caribbean side

Water rising and water receading

Ship moving through the canal

Actually, nice projects in Colòn

Poor monkey looks so sad caged

Tree covered in these hanging nests

Back alley in Porto-Bello

Bird chilling at the ruins

Cannons line the fort

Canoe along the inlets edge

looking towards the jungle

Edge of Porto-Bello

Looking out to sea

Peeking over the wall

Me with our guide

Reggie and I by the water

Typical homes in Porto-Bello

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