A goal without a plan is just a wish.
A college professor asked his class a question. If Philadelphia is 100 miles from New York and Chicago is 1000 miles from Philadelphia and Los Angles is 2000 miles from Chicago, how old am I.
One student in the back of the class raised his hand and when called upon said “Professor your 44..”
The Professor said “you’re absolutely correct, but tell me how did you arrive at the answer so quickly?”
The student said. “You see professor I have a brother, he’s 22 and he’s half nuts.”
I am honored to post a guest blog on ChiriquiChatter! First, let me begin with a brief introduction of who I am: My name is Heather Paudler, and if you’ve been following Don’s posts, you’ll know that I have stayed with Don, Lilliam, Natalie, and Koki (their wonderful dog!) three times since April 2013 conducting research for my dissertation.
I am currently a Ph.D. Candidate in Musicology at the Florida State University. Broadly, my research interests include moros y cristianos festivals – that is, festivals of reconquest performed throughout Latin America. This tradition of mock battles between Moors and Christians began eight centuries ago in Spain and is often incorporated into large festivals including dance, dialogue, and music. Versed in the use of music as a homogenizing factor, Spanish missionaries transplanted this tradition to diverse geographical areas in Asia and the Americas as a means to convert the indigenous populations to Catholicism.
I had always intended to go study one of these traditions as performed today in Mexico. When encouraged to find an area that had been less studied, a series of serendipitous events led me to the home of Don Ray Williams (more on this story in a later post!). I have been extremely fortunate to have Don, Lilliam, and Natalie help facilitate this research so welcomely!
Back to the story: In the community of Bugabita, Panama, the townspeople preserve and guard a tradition of moros y cristianos that they call la danza Bugabita. Their dance represents the struggle between two factions – the Moors from Turkey and the Twelve Peers of France led by Charlemagne.
On my third trip to Panama, the community organized a presentation on the night of Saturday, August 30th. While a massive thunderstorm threatened to undermine the outdoor performance, the rain subsided en route to Bugabita. I was fortunate to have an entire crew helping with photography (a huge thank you to Chris Smoot!!), video, and audio recording.
Whoever acquires knowledge and does not practice it resembles him who ploughs his land and leaves it unsown. (Gulistan 1258)
I am pleased to announce that I have received the first guest post from Heather Paudler. As you know, I am currently in Texas enjoying fun, food and family. Tomorrow I will get Heather’s first post up for you to read.
Her Doctoral thesis will provide an important record of some almost unknown Panamanian history. The Panamanians, we met on this journey together, have enriched Heather’s, Lilliam’s and my lives.
I hope you will not miss any of Heather’s posts. Lilliam, Natalie, Koki and I are extremely pleased to have been a part of Heather’s time doing her research in Panama.
Ulcers are caused not so much by what we eat as what’s eating us.
Those we hurt the most are often those we love the most.
The real act of discovery is not in finding new lands, but in seeing with new eyes. (Marcel Proust)
The fastest way to find something you’ve lost is to replace it.