Day 135 – Wednesday 1st February 2006
Panama City is hot. Very hot. The women are hot and the weather is hotter. I couldnt sleep very well in the heat, therefore when I woke up I was really tired and couldn’t be bothered to do anything.
However when Aaron siad he was gonig to the local National Park for a walk in the countryside I decided to get up off my arse and combine doing something interesting and getting some exercise.
Metropolitan National Park is easilt reached from Panama City. That is if you take a bus to it. We decided to take it a step further and walk to the national park, before actually doing a walk in the national park. It didnt turn out to be that difficult, we walked about an hour through the city (stopping for refreshments along the way) before we reached the entrance to the park.
After consulting a plan of the park we made the decision to walk to the mirador at the top of the park which gave a lookout over the park to the skyscrapers of the banking district and out to the Pacific ocean.
It was only a gentle climb to the summit of the mirador, and it took about 30 mins. As we arrived the clouds spread and we got a great view of the city. Panama City is a totally different place from the rest of Central America, being much more modern. The western influence in Panama City is immediately obvious to any visitor, and the vista of the skyline against the backdrop of the pacific ocean highlighted that Panama City is a major modern city.
Besides the skyscrapers and away in the distance of the Pacific, ships of all shapes and sizes, from oil tankers to cargo ships to sail boats were all lining up in an orderly fashion, ready to navigate the canal. The traffic was pretty stacked up as there were at least 15 boats ready and waiting to be given the all clear to enter canal waters.
While I was looking across at the hustle and bustle of the city I took the opportunity to sit and contemplate the last 4 months of my life, where I have been and what I have done – I am able to appreciate a little more that I am a very lucky person to be able to do such a thing as travel in the way I am travelling.
When we returned to the hostel I called Yami, a Panamanian girl who I had been to the house party with the Saturday previous, and we arranged to meet up. We went to a few bars and had a really good evening. She doesn’t speak English, so we conversed in Spanish. I was pretty pleased with the way things went considering, and also that now I am able to go out for an evening and speak only Spanish. Granted, Yami was very patient and did have to repeat herself a fair bit but I am still only a beginner!