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  1. 4 points
    I think it is just human nature for one to find ways to justify difficult decisions and then vent to relieve the stress and frustration. I am one that is leaving Panama and while I could easily list a number of things I dislike or seemed senseless here in Panama, I am sure I could just as easily find faults in my new destination once I have lived there for an equal amount of time. All my life I have made a major move about once every 10 years and I could easily list faults and express frustration with each location. My personal decision to move on is based on what appears a better option both personally and financially. While Panama finally tipped the scale for me in a different direction and while some past experiences here in Panama played a part in predicting the future, I can't say I have any great displeasure with Panama as a whole. I could probably list just as many pros as cons. There are certainly things I will miss here and will likely be back to visit clients and friends. It does feels like there are a larger number of expats leaving at this time or at least a bit more than the normal turnover we have seen each year. I am very skeptical about how concerned Panama is about the number leaving the country. I am sure they are more concerned with other issues and the expats leaving is probably just a side effect of other policy decisions. If Panama teaches you anything, it is that everything changes constantly (both good & bad). It can change at a moments notice... or even with no notice at all. Rules and laws here seem to be only enforced when a situation becomes untenable. Typically enforcement is done for a short time and then, as with everything here, it changes again. Seemingly random and sometimes without good reason to those of us that are used to laws and regulations being hard and fast.
  2. 3 points
    On the surface, it would seem like a reasonable explanation Keith. But, when your meds arrive with an invoice from a reputable pharmacy with Rx # and doctors name you would think it would be a good start in verification that the meds weren't knock off. But, that's not enough. So, the customs agent asks for a letter from you verifying your identity, cedula, and intent to be the sole user of the meds. You give it, and that's not enough. So, then the customs agent asks for the prescription to be verified by a Panamanian doctor. I don't know yet if that will be enough, but I do know b.s. when I see it.
  3. 2 points
    This is totally understandable. But I and many others don't understand the shotgun approach to the immigration and medication problems. The lack of notice too causes hardship. I've never subscribed to the cliche that we expats are "guests" of Panama; no one is putting us up. We're paying our way and paying taxes. But an important element of being a guest is the acceptance of hospitality. So even if you accept the proposition that we're guests, Panama is no longer hospitable in the way it once was. I am hopeful that this will run its course and that more level heads will prevail.
  4. 2 points
    Whysky, most of us try to abide by the laws of Panama. But, the problem here is that these rules seem to be invented by a bureaucrat based on his daily whims. As near as I can tell, all of the mail forwarding services were surprised by these new requirements. On any given day, you may or may not be able to obtain needed pharmaceuticals in Panama. These bureaucratic "whims" have a callous disregard for the health of people who are receiving prescriptions by mail. Your premise of adapting to and accepting the culture is quite similar to some comments that were made in a discussion last month regarding driving safety. When something is clearly screwed up, the right thing to do is to try to fix it. Death or departure are two alternatives that I prefer to avoid.
  5. 2 points
    No new crashes !!...just the debris from past blasts and a few tire marks left on the slanted cement wall. In surfing we call that maneuver an "off the lip"..... Bill demonstrates how it's done. Very impressive in a car !!
  6. 2 points
    From what our lawyer tells us, Probate here can lag for as long as 8 years. Having end of life affairs all taken care of to include property issues is a very important thing. If either Bill or I passed away neither of us left would want to haggle down here for years getting property issues straight IF the survivor decided to return to the USA. It's worth the legal fees now to get that stuff taken care of.
  7. 1 point
    In my role as a U.S. warden, I am regularly asked about when the Embassy will return to our area so that someone can renew his or her passport. The following information has been published before, but I'm relating it again. There is no need to go the the Embassy in Panama City or to a local visit by Embassy personnel to renew one's U.S. passport. This can be accomplished by secure DHL courier. It takes two weeks, sometimes less. The DHL outlet in Boquete is Mailboxes, Etc. They also take passport photo. Just bring your passport and a certified check (cheque certificado) for $110 made out to U.S. Embassy Panama, and the staff at Mailboxes will walk you through the rest. Complete, official instructions can be found on the U.S. Embassy Panama at this address: Renewal – adults by mail | U.S. Embassy in Panama Renewal – adults by mail | U.S. Embassy in Panama You may renew your passport by mail or walk in if you meet all of the following requirements: Your most recent U... Bonnie Williams
  8. 1 point
  9. 1 point
    On July 4th the speaker on Tuesday at the BCP will be Tom McCormick who gives a very interesting and funny talk on Panamanian culture. At least the backwoods or interior kind of culture. Here's the write-up: Tuesday, July 4 – Tom McCormack will tell us all about Panamanian legends, wives tales, myths, and superstitions. This is a very entertaining talk and will teach us all something about this place we call home.
  10. 1 point
    This bit of "culture" far predates retiree arrivals. It started as soon as cellphones arrived in Panama. Folks with landline service didn't pay for local calling so folks with cellphones would call family and friends and hang up. The folks with landlines would call back so the cellphone users were not charged. This was especially popular with kids given cellphones by their parents to keep track of them. The parents or friends would say, "dame una perdida", one ring, two rings, etc. As time progressed, anyone with paid cellphone charges called and hung up. If the person called wanted to spend money talking to the caller, he made the call. If not, he didn't. jim
  11. 1 point
    Pantah I am finding that I have had less problems with items from known common providers like AMAZON and SWANSONS vitamins. I received a lipstick (eventually ) from a provider called PHARM PACKS and that one tube of lipstick stayed in scrutiny for over a month. Pantah's EDTA may that white powder in a bottle that keeps them puzzling for eternity in customs. Who knows. I did look up EDTA on the Swanson's Health Products site and found it there. Just an idea is to order one bottle with other innocuous products and see if it arrives.
  12. 1 point
    Interesting Penny......We need a Panamanian Culture topic because there are many thing we all may not be aware of........ Alison
  13. 1 point
    The culture is the "Panamanian hang-up call." Tell your workers to call you and hang up. You call them back.
  14. 1 point
    My phone isn't pre-paid. I don't run out of minutes. I did solve the problem after an online chat with C&W. He said to turn off the phone and turn it back on. That solved the problem, as it does with most computer problems. Thanks for the suggestions.
  15. 1 point
    Yes. My Ngobe friends call me, hang up and anticipate I'll call them back. They are always out of minutes...or almost always
  16. 1 point
    I don't want to wish myself bad luck but I usually order my multivitamin supplements in 6 month batches for Bill and I. I get a better price that way. No doubt when customs sees a box full of the same multivit bottle they will think I'm a vitamin pusher. It would seem if needed the recipient here could get a written prescription from a doc here to have on file along with a affidavit statement made by the client ( with Cedula # etc etc) that these items are for personal use and have that on file electronically at MBE . A bit of an ordeal yes but it would ease the stickiness of going through the flaming hoops over and over for both MBE, the client...and as well customs that should have better things to do than to interdict vitamins and prescription medication for retirees.
  17. 1 point
    Thanks, Alan. I'll pass this info on to the Embassy in case they don't know. I'm hoping we will get the official word soon on what is required. The prescription requirement is just word of mouth at this point. But the delays are fact.
  18. 1 point
    We had that happen last month. What's funny is...the reason is Bil had run out of minutes on his phone. We though for sure there was something wrong with the phone or network. Boy did we feel stupid.....
  19. 1 point
    Yesterday we looked out the window here at Brisas and saw what looked like a moving cloud. On closer observation it was a swarm on all sides of the house front and back all moving in one direction ( East to West) . Today I spoke to a neighbor located 1 1/2 blocks away and he observed the same at his house. Bill blasted a bunch of them with hornet spray that were wanting to get cozy along with a gzillion buddies on one of our gutter down pipes. This morning our exterminator came for his usual visit. He took a close look and said this was a type of hornet. Each one was the size of your little finger nail...teeny critters. They did not bite nor tend to land on you either. Anybody else observe them yesterday? ( Friday June 23 around noonish) Here's a picture of one:
  20. 1 point
  21. 1 point
    IMO "rumor" such as the one listed here causes more confusion than solving a problem. I appreciate how postings on this web-site (Bud, Keith, Newslady especially) list the source for what is re-published here.
  22. 1 point
    It was so slight, I didn't know if I was feeling a tremor, or just had too much wine.
  23. 1 point

    There are about 20 sites around the country where people are gathering en masse to help reforestation today. Locally out near Gualaca. This young is happy, about to plant his first tree.
  24. 1 point
    I agree with BlueBird. Both potholes and patience are off-subject and, IMO, should be split off into their own categories. This category is about the significant development of delays in the importation of medications and other merchandise because of new customs regulations. It should not be cluttered up with extraneous topics.
  25. 1 point
    Maybe I missed something? Why the postings on pot holes in the Delays in Customs category? Is the message that Customs is a pot hole? Need help to understand.
  26. 1 point
    Yes Judy, if you notice they seem to grow fairly quickly. There are about 5 in a row on the hwy coming up to Boquete from Brisas. A few look like they could cause some serious tire damage.
  27. 1 point
    It's been my personal experience that folks who have made up their mind to leave an area, or are preparing to do so, are more apt to find fault or express displeasure with the place. It doesn't seem to be unusual for us to find more than ample justification for moving to or from somewhere when the right time comes.
  28. 1 point
    Where have you seen such postings, Marie? This is the first I've heard about expats leaving in droves and the first I've heard about the Panamanian government being concerned about it.
  29. 1 point
    Exactly Woody...enough is enough. Just the same we still have to deal with it until something loosens up.
  30. 1 point
    In any number of situations here, periods of enforcing regulations to the letter generally only take place after abuse is caught. Other examples might be recent crackdowns on perpetual tourism, and parking at the BCP. Concerning medications and pharmaceuticals, there have been recent busts of both real and fake medications entering the country for resale, so my guess is that authorities are tightening up on enforcement of procedures in response.
  31. 1 point
    Until something changes, you just have to jump through the hoops. Best to start now. The whole thing makes no sense.
  32. 1 point
    Contact Keith Woolford. He'll handle the entire sale from finding a buyer to taking care of all the paperwork. You'll be glad you did unless you have endless time and patience.
  33. 1 point
    Mark and Gary, the owners of Señor Gyros, which is located on Calle 1A Sur next to CHOX in Bajo Boquete, announced that the business changed hands as of last Friday. It's my understanding that the new owner is Nadine Wilson, previously of Seasons at Lucero.
  34. 1 point
    Welcome to the newsletter of Boquete Health and Hospice Is this email not displaying correctly? View it in your browser. A Message from Boquete Health and Hospice Administrator Bev Tyler As Administrator I am the contact person with the community for your immediate health needs. I carry the Boquete Health and Hospice phone and deal with any issues that come up. They include needs for equipment or help organizing care for people who are sick or dying. Often this involves a home visit to determine exactly what type of help is most needed. As a registered nurse (foreign) I oversee the care that our teams of volunteers give to make sure that the clients’ needs are being met. That includes both the person who is sick or dying and also their family and the people close to them. We have learned over the years what resources are available in the community and help link people with those resources. It is a big job but I love it. I meet interesting people who are so very grateful for what we do. I get to receive their gratitude when the reality is that we are a group of many volunteers all working hard to make sure that you and your loved ones have as good a quality of life as possible. How We Help IN A SPLIT SECOND, MY LIFE CHANGED Beginning a new life in Panama was filled with thoughts of tropical gardens to plant, glorious hikes and many new and exciting places to explore. In a split second, my fun-filled life changed last June when a ladder fell out from under me as I painted my kitchen. The doctors would diagnose me with a broken pelvis in both the front and back. To avoid surgery, I was required to lie on my back for 10 weeks, without putting any weight on my legs, and sitting for no more than 20 minutes at a time, only to eat. I have always been a very independent person, and felt so hopeless, having to suddenly depend on the help of others. Family in the States wanted to help, but could not leave their homes and jobs to take care of me, and I could not travel on an airplane to be near them. That is when a friend told me about Boquete Health and Hospice. I had not even thought of Hospice, because I was of the assumption it was for patients who were terminally ill. Boquete Health and Hospice is for many different levels of care. We came up with a plan based on my needs. The volunteers helped with housecleaning, laundry, animal care, meals, etc. They were like angels that came to my house and helped me through those miserable 10 weeks. Without their help, and the help of a couple dear friends, I don´t know how I would have endured that long period of time. I am currently in the states with damage to my spine from the same fall, and having spinal fusion surgery in two days. I will have a 12 week recuperation period much the same as before. I have often wished there was a group of volunteers I could contact as I did in Boquete. Had I been able to remain in Panama, I would have also become a Hospice Volunteer. I can think of no better way to make a difference in the Boquete community, and of helping people in need. By all means, if you are in need, please do not hesitate to call them for assistance. You will be relieved you did so. Holley Hayes The Vision and Mission Statements for Boquete Health and Hospice The vision statement for BHHF is: Supporting a Healthy Community Our mission is to inform and promote community health and to support people with needs by providing information, equipment, and services. As part of the mission to support a healthy community BHHF provides community information programs. On June 13, members of BHHF presented a program on falls prevention at the Tuesday Market. Merl Will-Wallace, Betty Landis and Laurie Collier were the speakers for the presentation. The following is a summary of the presentation: To reduce the risk of falling at home: Remove clutter and walk carefully when there are potential hazards like throw rugs and pets. Use a sturdy stool with hand rails to get something you cannot reach. Do not use towel bars, sink edge, etc. for support because they could come away from the wall. Use a night light in the bedroom and bathroom. Immediately wipe up spills on the floor and use rubber backed bathmats to prevent slipping. Wear sensible shoes (no flip flops, heels, etc.) Stay active to maintain overall strength, endurance, and balance. Know your limitations. If there is a task you cannot easily complete, do not risk a fall by trying it. Information provided by AOTA. Blood Pressure Monitoring Boquete Health and Hospice offers free Blood Pressure monitoring every Tuesday at the BCP Tuesday Market from 8:30 to 11:30 am. Stop by and let our retired professional nurses monitor your BP on a regular basis and try to answer your health questions. Save the Date! BHHF will be sponsoring a Health Fair at the Boquete Feria grounds on October 22. The focus will be on traditional medical services needed by expats in the Boquete area. Be watching for more detailed announcements as the date approaches. We are excited to present our new informational 1 minute video: https://youtu.be/EbYmYqBRs3Y To Make a Donation: BHHF functions with the donations provided by the community. If you are interested in supporting the work we do, please make a donation. To make a financial contribution by check or cash contact Laurie Collier, our treasurer, at lojocollier@yahoo.com to arrange a place and time to pick up your donation. For more information, visit our website: www.boquetehealth.org We also have a Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/boqueteheartshandsandhelp/?ref=bookmarks Please Like our page and Share the contents with your friends and families. To Contact Us Hospice/Health: 507.6781.9250 Blood Donor Program: 507.6590.2000 E-mail: boquetehospice@gmail.com E-mail: boquetehealth@gmail.com Confidentiality All patient information shared with any Boquete Health and Hospice volunteer is kept in the strictest confidence. Copyright © 2017 , All rights reserved. Our mailing address is: boquetehealth@gmail.com Unsubscribe | View in browser
  35. 1 point
    I think I spotted your problem. You should have a few drinks with the bus driver before boarding! Why be the only one on the bus who is sober?
  36. 1 point
    One year we made it to Panama City in 5 hours on the midnight refrigerated run. Needed a stiff drink after we got off the bus.
  37. 1 point
    The basic rules for parking at the BCP is you cannot park with your wheel(s) on the sidewalk and you cannot park with your wheel(s) in the driving lane. As Bonnie says, there have been lots of warnings about this.
  38. 1 point
  39. 1 point
    So let them be angry. They should know the traffic laws and, for heaven's sake, there have been enough warnings about how not to park at BCP. And it's downright dangerous around Sugar 'n' Spice because of the poor parking, largely by gringos. If gringos are violating the traffic laws, it's unfair to attribute a ticket to an officer who "dislikes gringos." I suspect it's going to take tickets, trips to David, and fines to bring some folks to their senses. Expats are always complaining about the driving habits of Panamanians, but maybe they should take a good look at themselves.
  40. 1 point
    I wrote my bank asking if my understanding was correct that funds are available at once to a beneficiary. I received the following response: It is correct. The designation of beneficiary at the Banks is good for personal accounts. The funds will be available right away and what the beneficiaries will received is a cashier check. No probate, only the death certificate is required and ID of the beneficiaries.
  41. 1 point
    Yeiks.....guess I should check the regular bus maintenance program for the company before i buy may next ticket to Panama City. Yah I think a little compound will buff out the back end of the truck fine. ( that's what my husband tells me when he comes home with a grinding scratch on the side of our car from parking too close to something.)
  42. 1 point
    Absolutely. There are a number of Catch-22 issues. The morgue at the hospital won't release the body to the funeral home until the medical bill is paid. The funeral home won't acquire the death certificate and make arrangements for disposal of the body until it is paid. And without knowing if the deceased had a bank account and, if so, where it is, the relative can't try to access funds to pay the hospital and the funeral home. And, unless the relative is a designated beneficiary, he won't be able to access the funds anyway until after probate. That's why I thought it was important to post this. There's a lot that goes into being prepared.
  43. 1 point
    Her drivers seat was re-set backwards
  44. 1 point
    Looks like the truck owner will need a good body shop.
  45. 1 point
    Mike's Global offers chicken pot pies with a thick crust some days. PDG
  46. 1 point
    One Tuesday market vendor sells frozen chicken pot pies. But, they're super simple to make, except for the pie crust which is easy, but messy. Shred one of the roasted chickens that you can buy in any market and the rest is just up to your particular taste. You can make 5-6 nice sized pies with one chicken. Saute veggies of your choice, add seasonings of your choice, and use a can of cream of mushroom soup to help make the sauce which is nothing more than a simple béchamel of butter, flour, and milk. Voila, about 5 or 6 chicken pies in an hour of prep time and about $15 total.
  47. 1 point
    Rodney Direct Sign up is today Saturday At BCP from 10am to 2 pm. Bilingual services Rodny Direct offers are services you can afford ...and can't afford to miss out on. Sign up today.
  48. 1 point
  49. 1 point
    Yup. I never thought of myself as a nervous sort but after 10 years here I am on the edge of the car seat when Bill drives. ( He wants to re-mount the seat facing backwards as I drive him crazy !) ( Lately I think he'd rather have me in the trunk ) Anyway...yes you have to keep your eyes scanning 360 and expect the un-expected...and .. expect the choice the other driver will make will be the worst choice ...Glad you made the Interamerican hwy trip that last time without incident. Stay safe.....
  50. 1 point
    I sure hope the officer in front of Brisas has quick reflexes and can jump out of the way of cars sliding towards him Real dangerous spot to stand.