Monthly Archives: August 2006

Gringos And Geckos Love Bonlac Yogurt

In Panama City, a Gringo and a Gecko have bonded through the commom love of Bonlac Yogurt. In a post Mike made on one of the Yahoo Groups, Mike said that his new friend has lost all fear when it comes to him and yogurt. Without fail, about 5 minutes after finishing a cup of yogurt, the gecko comes around to finish what Mike had missed. The following two photos were taken by Mike Ramo.

Mike brought his web and multimedia skills to Panama in 2004. Here is how he says it.

Having left my home city of New York in February 2004 for the tropical country of Panama, I realized I had no formal portfolio of work to introduce myself with. Lacking was one central depository for me to refer interested and interesting people to

So after gathering my past six years of work, my powerbook, some blank paper, and all the digital tools in my toolbox – I started to create. Remembering, inspired by, and re-living memories of the past six years, I humbly present to you:


Pretty soon he is going to have to add animal trainer to his list of skills.

Mike also has a commercial website that he wanted me to mention.

Just When You Thought It Was Getting Safer

You Are On Notice

Article 1 – You would think that the Enterprise versions of Windows are more secure that the desktop versions and I am sure that they are. However, malware attacks are continuing to increase and here is an article that may make you think about changing your OS.

Article 2 – If you are sticking with Windows OS, then security updates to your browser will be just as important as to your OS. That is assuming that MS can get out a good security fix.

Rio San Felix & Playa Las Lajas Update

Playa Las Lajas Disaster
This is the latest email I have received this morning on the status of government assistance for the residents of Las Lajas. A previous post had a photo of Ing. Luis Lombardo that Linda references in this email.

Hi Don Ray,

Just wanted to give you an update – on Monday, August 21st, Sr. Ruben Blades called me and another member of our property owners group. As they say, timing is everything and I was unable to speak at length with him as I was sitting in a dentist’s chair!

Between the two conversations, the basic fact remains: MOP is the only government agency that can assist us in saving Playa Las Lajas. As you & your readers know, we have been petitioning MOP for assistance for 2 months now. However, Sr. Blades did make a few phone calls on our behalf, one being to the Minister of MOP Benjamin Colamarco, and was able to provide information that we’d been unable to obtain ourselves. MOP’s hydrologist, Ing. Mena, had indeed inspected the site at Playa Las Lajas and his findings are going into the “study”. No indication how long MOP plans to conduct this “study”.

Ing. Luis Lombardo, Provincial Director of MOP remains elusive. When calling his office, he is busy in meetings. Messages are left. When calling his cell phone, calls go to his voice-mail. Messages are left. But none of the calls are returned. Any information our group has received in the past two weeks regarding MOP’s activities has come from other parties, such as Sr. Blades or from Lombardo’s personal friends with whom I have business contact.

So, Ruben Blades does read his e-mail and I and the other residents appreciate his efforts in our behalf.

As for the Rio San Felix, we can only continue to monitor it and the tides and their affect on the retaining wall.

Thanks Don Ray for getting the word out there – your efforts on our behalf are greatly appreciated!

Linda & Stan

Business Opportunity in David Chiriquí

Hotel Panamá Rey Today

I received the following email from Wee-Mingh Fung related to a business opportunity in the city of David, Chiriquí. I have gotten to know Wee-Mingh because Café Don Sui is one of my favorite restaurants and I have talked to him many times while I was there.

You may also remember the photos I took on my visit to Hotel Panamá Rey

I am happy to post his email and if you have an interest in this business opportunity, contact him, at the following email address.

Don, we are trying to find lenders, buyers or partners to embark on a 1.4 million dollar renovation for the Hotel Panamá Rey. This hotel is the tallest building in “downtown” David, and has been successfully in business for 26 years. We have a business plan that can be sent to investors or lenders. You have done a great job at conveying information in your WEB site about Chiriquí, so we would like to know if you can help us find people interested in investing in the city of David’s hotel and tourism industry.


Wee-Mingh Fung

This is an architect view of the Hotel Panamá Rey following renovation.

Hotel Panamá Rey as it is planned

Musical Journeys

Pandora Internet Radio has provided me so much enjoyment, I thought I would tell you, once again, how easy it is to listen to great music from the Internet and to be able to tailor it to your liking. If you click on the artist’s names below Pandora will play some of their selections or selections that are similar. If a selection plays that you don’t want to hear again, just give it thumbs down and it will never play again. If one you really like plays, give it thumbs up. This is how you tailor each station to your liking. Continue reading Musical Journeys

A Time For Remembering

I spent a little time over in Costa Rica Saturday and Sunday. While I was there I happened to see some kids playing and it dawned me that adults need to be more like children. It takes very little to make them happy.

Here are a couple of photos of some kids having the greatest time in a small outdoor children’s pool. If you click on the first of the two photos, you will see a short video I took after they had forgotten a camera was watching them. I had been watching them run on the road that you can see in the bottom part of the photo. This was a dirt street with lots of rocks. There is no way I could have walked on it barefooted and these kids were running like it was nothing at all. Ouch!

Continue reading A Time For Remembering

Hotel Gran Nacional Buffet

It had been a long time since I had eaten the buffet at Hotel Gran Nacional, so today I treated my self. If I remember correctly, it was $5.95 for all you can eat. I think it is $8.50 on Sundays. I had been disappointed the last time I had gone to the buffet at Hotel Puerta del Sol and I wanted to compare.

I think Hotel Puerta del Sol had more main choices and a larger salad bar, but the quality of Gran Nacional was far better. I always thought that Gran Nacional had the best buffet in David and I haven’t changed my mind.

You start off at the soup station

Followed by the salad bar.

Next comes the main course. Here we have rice and chicken.

I choose the beef loin instead of chicken today.

I loved the platano and the red beans were great.

And to complete the meal I had some fresh fruit and some cake which was outstanding as well.

That Is A Couple of Nice Mamones

I hope I spelled it correctly. Mamones is a fruit that I enjoy buying here in David. You will see it being sold a lot along the side of the road. I understand it comes in red and yellow, but I have only seen the red ones.

It is interesting to look at and interesting to eat. You easily break through the outside skin and you find the fruit, which is similar in texture to a pealed grape. When you eat it, however, it is nothing like a grape. The fruit is soft and tough and chewy. The flavor is a combination of sweet and sour at the same time.

From what I hear the yellow ones are less acidy and sweeter. You can’t get them year round, but when they are in season, I try to buy them often.