Kate Spade

Those of you who know me personally, know about my Kate Spade obsession. I’m writing on a laptop that I carry in a Kate Spade bag. My Kate Spade wallet is tucked into that same bag. My phone screen has Kate Spade wallpaper. When I get on a plane back to the U.S., I’ll be…

What’s in a house?

So far we have had to explain multiple things in the house to our movers in Panama. The fire pit was the first conundrum. We took the cover off so they could exam it. Gas fire pit, fake stone outside, marble top with hazel-toned tumbled glass in the fire area. You could see them wondering…

Surprise

Laid off in a foreign country. Hello. Wow. We weren’t expecting that. Sure, we had made comments among ourselves that this doesn’t seem like the most cost-efficient business model. We had talked about the huge outlay of money to move so many people, support so many people with housing, schooling, relocation assistance. Sure, it is…

Fruits and Veggies

Fruits and vegetables have been hit and miss here. I've never tasted anything as sweet and perfect as pineapple can be in Panama. Soooo very good. But then I've never been as disappointed in the availability of fresh produce as I have been here. Actually, that's not true. Former Communist Prague winter of 1991 was…

Gringo

The language barrier is always a challenge. It can be isolating to be in a place where you understand about 1/10 of what is being said around you. But it an odd way it also makes you a public sight. We are gringos. We stick out. There are other gringos so we aren't alone, but…

If only they had the bruschetta mix …

It's not Trader Joe's, but Foodie specialty produce market makes me think of one of my favorite stores. One opened near Dean's work. It was nice to peruse fresh fruits and vegetables, seasonings without additives and to just explore some culinary options I haven't found elsewhere. Guess who's gonna get grocery lists to bring home from…

More mail we didn’t get

Turns out not only do you not get your vehicle license renewal in the mail, you also don't get your insurance renewal in the mail. We purchased car insurance in July. In California, your insurance goes for a year (July to June in this case). We filled out the auto-renewal paperwork and figured we were…

Plugging along and in

Remember being the new kid at school? Or the newest hire in an established business or department? Have you gone to a party where everyone else has known each other for years? That’s a little bit like moving to a new country. You feel like a fish out of water and you are pretty sure…

Renewing our vehicle license

You don't realize how much you depend on a mail system until you don't have one. Sure, it's inconvenient not to get mail. Your family complains, birthday cards disappear into the void, bills are hand-delivered (they just show up tucked into the door), and it's difficult to send anything but Amazon gifts to family. But…

Spanish lessons

My Spanish lessons started a few weeks ago. Dean's company provides 80 hours of one-on-one lessons for me. The teacher is very good. She's smart, funny, follows Panama politics and is willing to explain so many things. She comes Mondays and Wednesdays for two hours each visit. My teacher thought I was a bit brilliant…