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David

Posted by Susanna On January - 11 - 2011ADD COMMENTS

David is the second biggest city in Panama. And it is a perfect place to stay and plan trips from there in surrounding towns like Boquette or areas like the cloud forest, the hot springs or islands. I stayed at the Bambu Hostel of Greg and Mike and it became like a second home to me while being away.

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Around Boca Brava

Posted by Susanna On January - 9 - 2011ADD COMMENTS

Around the little island of Boca Brava are lots of other islands. New friends I had met in the guesthouse I stayed had organized a boat driver for today who brought us everywhere we wanted. I saw Dolphins and pristine empty white sand beaches. Just a wonderful relaxing sunny day.

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Howler monkey orphans

Posted by Susanna On January - 7 - 2011ADD COMMENTS

At Boca Brava I met new friends Mark and Casey who told me about another monkey shelter. This time a howler monkey orphanage. So a foreigner family own a guest lodge and take care of howler orphans. Many monkeys still are sold as pets and for getting a baby mostly the mothers are killed. The average monkey baby cost only US$20! Therefore the monkey mum dies. Since I love monkeys so much I really got excited if that place is as nice as the one in Puyo. The bus dropped us off and the owner Steve picked us up with his car. The lodge is beautiful and big. Everywhere one is surrounded by lush and wild jungle. From the lodge what is a bit higher up than sea level on a good day you can see the ocean! The family introduced themselves and after a few minutes from everywhere the monkeys appeared… There is nothing sweeter than all these babies with their big dark eyes. I was happy. I enjoyed so much watching them playing, eating, having their milk. The more I hang out with these creatures the more I want to protect them from all harm… Monkeys are so human… unbelievable how they act in certain situations…

Howler monkeys

Tamarind monkeys at the marina near Boca Brava


 

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One good reason for traveling alone!

Posted by Susanna On January - 6 - 2011ADD COMMENTS

It was time to leave Santa Catalina. I had almost no cash anymore and I needed to keep going especially since I hoped to find a bit more excited places and a bit more after my taste. Since I don’t surf Santa Catalina had not that much to offer. The restaurants were expensive and the selection of foods small. Even the only shop in town was mostly empty. To buy some food was so lucky and only happens when you are exactly there when they deliver. The strange girl which what I shared a room with had started talking to me yesterday and she suggested we should travel together for a bit… “Why not?” I thought. It sounded good to me traveling with another girl even though I most of the time travel on my own. But as I and you will see I will be disabuse later… The girl named Nada was from Serbia and lived in Germany. She had left or lost her job – I can’t remember. She had been the opposite of easy going for my taste. And she tried to dominate. Either way I knew there were two buses very early in the morning in direction of the second largest city of Panama named David. But she supposedly had found out there were later buses so we could have enjoyed the time until noon at the beach. I believed her but the reality taught me something else! There were no buses anymore and we sat with all our bags on the streets waiting… She got mad at me since she could not handle the situation. But I found a taxi and could bargain a pretty cheap price to a place called Boca Chica what was on the way to David. US$20 for each of us. So the day seemed saved and she got back to a normal mood. We barely spoke at the drive. I simply enjoyed the luxury of driving in a car instead of a packed bus and I took photos of the famous Panamericana. That road connects Alaska over Central America down to the most southern city of South America – Ushuaia in Argentina. The Pan-American Highway is the world’s longest “motorable road”. However, because of the Darién Gap, it is not possible to cross between South America and Central America by traditional motor vehicle. The taxi driver said he was not going all the way to David today but he recommended us to stay on an island named Boca Brava close (2min boat ride for US$2) to Boca Chica. We arrived at a tiny marina at Boca Chica late and it already was dark. To make sure I knew how to leave the little island of Boca Brava where we were supposed to go and to find the Panamerican Highway back I was asking the taxi driver about it. But before he could even answer the strange girl acted crazy and weird shouting at me I should stop talking ‘all the time’ and that I annoy her and whatever else… I was shocked and surprised at the same time since we barely spoke a word on the drive and I just was good enough to buy her a bottle of water. I told her to hold back and to stop talking to me that way since she didn’t know me. I told her to behave. What a crazy attitude that woman had. In that moment I really wondered why she had even talked to me and suggested to travel for a while with me. And I regret – sometimes it is way better to be alone and happy than being surrounded by crazy, weird and damaged people. Especially when you travel you alway should choose carefully with whom you want to share the trip or if it might be better going alone and independently. But I had learned. Actually just as side info – since that moment she never had spoken a word to me anymore and she stayed three nights completely ignoring me. And well she was if I remember right 35 or 36years old – but behaved like a stupid stubborn child or worse.

Ahhh and until I forget it – the most annoying song of my trip! Had to hear it everywhere, literally everywhere in Ecuador and now also in Panama. The Panamerica reminded me about it. But listen yourself…


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Golden sunset

Posted by Susanna On January - 4 - 2011ADD COMMENTS

I did not feel good today so my plan to explore the area in and around Santa Catalina failed. Still I got some pretty amazing shots from a golden sunset at the beach of Santa Catalina. Enjoy!

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Isla Coiba

Posted by Susanna On January - 3 - 20111 COMMENT

Yesterday I left Panama City in direction of Santa Catalina a little dreamy surfer beach town. It is so tiny that it has no ATM machines and you have to bring enough cash. Famous became Santa Catalina for hosting once the Surf World Championship. Every person in that little town had thought that this will bring lots of business and so they had invested in building more accommodation or buying more food to serve the expected thousands and thousands of guests. But the weather at the championship became bad and rainy and so very few visitors arrived to watch their surf stars. That brought many of the villagers financial problems since they had invested. Meanwhile the place recovers and starts to come back slowly. I stayed at Rollo’s Guesthouse in a two bedroom what I shared with a girl from Serbia which did not talk to me the first days… So today I went diving because the dive shops over here brag that they see the whale shark everyday. Funny when I went I didn’t see it… Also the owner of the dive shop was very grumpy and unfriendly and I ask myself how he ever could make business… He had a creditcard reader and when he had cash you could get it and he would book it plus 10% interest from your credit card. And since there is no ATM it was the only way to get cash over there… Still very unfriendly. The dives itself where not that amazing – I saw few sharks and a big school of rays. Lunch break was at Isla Coiba which is a national park.

Isla Coiba

Santa Catalina

 

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Bye bye 2010!

Posted by Susanna On December - 31 - 2010ADD COMMENTS

Ohhhh, how fast this year 2010 went by… It just had started. And now it is already over. Sometimes I really have the feeling that it all passes by faster with age… I had a great year with very happy and very sad moments. I hope the best for the upcoming year 2011 for all my friends and I! What I did today? I went for a walk with Todd at Casco Viejo and later for a photo excursion in the Panama Zoo to take pictures of the harpy eagle which is the biggest eagle in the world. When we saw the eagle it was far away and secretly I wished somebody to come out and feed it so it would come closer… And guess what? Somebody did! So I was able to do the following photos. In addition I’ve seen the jaguar and the tapir. Animals I wanted to spot in the wild in the amazon but were not able too… In the evening I went with friends I had met in the hostel to dinner at the Casablanca restaurant as a warm up for the long new years night.

Casco Viejo

Panama Zoo

Harpy Eagle

Jaguar

Dinner at Casablanca

 

 

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Last days in 2010

Posted by Susanna On December - 30 - 2010ADD COMMENTS

Walking in Casco Viejo on the last days of the old year… Everywhere vendors selling lucky charms and incense. It smells after frankincense in the busy streets and people try to get everything they need for the last new years eve.

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Casco Viejo

Posted by Susanna On December - 29 - 2010ADD COMMENTS

My first day in Panama. I remembered a cartoon of my childhood with a little bear and a little tiger. They always used to say: “Oh how beautiful is Panama!” They were right – Panama is a wonderful place. The weather is perfectly warm. For me a perfect condition. I stayed in the old quarter, so called Casco Viejo. It is a photographers paradise since there all over hidden corner and beautiful restored colonial houses are close neighbors to old morbid ruins. The quarters special atmosphere makes the mixture of both. Panama City was founded on the 15th of August 1519 as a important connection for colonial Spain while conquering the Inca kingdom and transporting gold from the new world. The old quarter owns as well a few beautiful old churches. One of them is accommodates the famous golden altar. In 1671 famous pirate Henry Morgan, a welsh man, was in the process of robbing Panama City. He was looking for the golden altar and it is said that his raid on Panama was one of the last military campaigns in the wars of the reformation. However the monks had time enough to paint the altar black to hide it from the pirates and that is why we can still admire it today.
Other than that I tried to get my broken external hard disc fixed and I tried to buy a new hard disc. But both didn’t work out, unfortunately.

Casco Viejo

Iglesia de San Jose

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My favorite place…

Posted by Susanna On December - 26 - 2010ADD COMMENTS

Again my favorite place is the ‘Reserva de mono’ in Puyo! Since I am back in Baños I needed to go back. I had told that couple I had Mariana and her husband about it and they were happy to join me. I just feel so happy in between all these monkey and I love to play with them or just simply to watch them. There are literally so cheeky when they chasing the Coatis or kissing the dogs… Therefore the third load of monkey photos – enjoy!

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About Me

“Not necessity, not desire - no, the love of power is the demon of men. Let them have everything - health, food, a place to live, entertainment - they are and remain unhappy and low-spirited: for the demon waits and waits and will be satisfied.”
by Friedrich Nietzsche
 

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