Another Update From Maná

Here is another update from Maná:

Hi Everyone,

I would like to thank each and every one of you who donated food and schools supplies to the people of the banana farm of Caoba 09 in area of Puerto Armuelles.

We went to that community about three weeks ago and found people with much need and very little hope. These are people who lost their jobs more than a year ago and have not found work and do not see any relief in the near future. I found a sense of hopelessness when I was talking to some of them.

There were about 300 people who showed up, and of those 300, 200 of them were kids of different ages. I was curious as to why there were so many kids and so few parents, and I was told that a lot of these kids stayed behind with grand parents or neighbors because their parents had to go get jobs in Panama City or David for that matter. The parents were sending money to them so they could eat and go to school. Continue reading

It’s A Wonderful Life

I was just reflecting today how fortunate I am. I arise every morning to a beautiful blue sky and birds chirping, the aroma of coffee and bacon in the kitchen and a new day to experience. It is like this at least 360 mornings out of the year. The other five days are even better.

I turn on the television and get news from the US and other parts of the world. I can sense the stress and pressures that exist in the location of the broadcasts, and yet at the moment, I feel very few of them.

Compared to many in the world, I am a wealthy man. Compared to many in the world, I am a pauper. However, I am a very contented person. I have good health, I have lots of love in my life. I have a few coins in my pocket at the end of the month. I eat well, feel great and worry little. What more can a person ask for.

You can’t take it with you, so having a lot more than you need won’t make you any happier. I know because I have had more and I wasn’t happier.

I try to do what I can to make my Panamanian host feel happy that I have moved here. I hope to be remembered as giving more than I received.

Panama is one place where no matter how much you have, it is probably more than many can even conceive of. That is why it is important to share a smile with those you meet. Giving the loose change to the grocery store bag boy is another way to say thank you God, for letting me be so lucky. There are many people in Panama that only work for tips and the bag boys are some of them.

I have now lived in Panama for over seven years. I feel like I understand Panama better. I feel like I understand life better. I feel like I understand me better. I feel like I have been given a real gift of being able to enjoy life to its fullest. I feel I am very very fortunate.

I am now going to go take my shower and move on to what the rest of the day brings me. I wish you all a wonderful day. Remember, smile at everyone you meet today. You will feel better and they will feel better.

It would also be a good time to tell those that you love, what a difference they make in your life. I think I will go do that now.