It’s been awhile since I posted anything, so I’ll use this space to catch up on a few things.
They changed the plan for the road detour while they’re working on the main street at the entrance to Boquete, and this one is much more tolerable. They made traffic one way into town on the side road that’s one block to the east of the main street, and one way out of town on a side road that’s one block on the west side. Bonus – the outgoing road is freshly paved! This is MUCH better than originally proposed route that was a lot longer, and on a road that wasn’t much more than a gravel pathway.
I had a table at the Tuesday market for the first time this week! I only sold one pen, but several people showed interest, so it should improve as I settle in. The intersection that leads to the BCP was closed for construction, so I don’t think there were as many people there as usual this week. This was one of my goals when I chose Boquete, so I’m happy to have it become a reality.
When I moved into my house, the water heater didn’t work properly. The most common type of water heaters here are the on-demand type (no big tank) that are powered by propane gas, like the small tanks used with gas grills. The one in this house would come on, then quit immediately, so I had no hot water for the first three days I lived here. Del, a neighbor who does some work for my landlord, replaced the heater, and it now works perfectly.
However, when Del turned the water back on after installing the new heater, the sudden increase in pressure ruptured two water filters in the whole-house filtration system. It sounded like an explosion, and water gushed out everywhere before he could shut the water off again. So Del’s wife and I mopped and sopped up the water that was about an inch deep in the storage room, which took well over an hour. I did manage to keep the water from flowing into the rest of the house, though. Good thing the floors are tile!
My office is pretty much set up and functional now. I shipped my little scanner and bought a small monochrome laser printer, so I’m fully functional, computer-wise. I haven’t worked on any clay projects yet, but I’ve got my storage drawers and convection oven in place.
I headed out the door last week to go to the grocery store, only to find that I had a flat tire. I remembered that roadside assistance was included in my car insurance, so I called them to send someone out. In about 30 minutes, the guy was at my door! He fixed the flat, and it didn’t cost me a penny. Great service!
I also needed to renew my car tag this month, and also wanted to transfer the registration from David (a larger town 30-40 minutes south of here) to Boquete. To get a new tag, I had to get my car “inspected” (which consists of them taking pictures of each side of the car and giving me an official inspection document). Since I needed to get my flat tire repaired and also replace a burned-out brake light, I did all those things at the same time at the Quick Fix.
There’s a “car guy” in Boquete that lots of people use to find cars for them. He will also take care of getting new car tags, which is not a simple process here, so I’m having him take care of that for me. Here, you don’t just walk in, pay your money, and get a new sticker. You get a whole new tag, and you don’t get it right then. I’ve heard that your new tag has the same number as your existing tag, which must mean they actually make the tag after you pay for the renewal. When you pay, you get a receipt (called a permiso) that serves as your temporary tag if you’re stopped for a traffic violation before you receive your physical tag. Seems wasteful of time and materials, but that’s the way it’s done here. But TIP (This Is Panama)!
So, all in all, things are going well here. Daily life has its challenges, but that’s the same no matter where you are. The pros definitely outweigh the cons, and I’m enjoying my new home in paradise!