Category Archives: Panama Journal

Proof of Life Advisory

If you are a permanent resident of Panama and receive pension payments from the US (i.e SS, RR etc) then you should know that the Proof of Life forms, that must be returned, have been mailed.

If the questionnaire is not received by October, you should contact the FBU for a blank form to avoid the benefits from being suspended.

If you do not know about the Proof of Life requirement, then read the original post which is ->

For general information on the SS proof of life from the Embassy, you may refer to the following link:

And no, you may not use a PTY or other mail forwarding address as your SSA notification address.

If It Ain’t Broke………

OK. I thought I was through posting about KODI and the Fire Stick, but I have had a bad experience today.

They have released version 15 of KODI. I decided I would try it on my laptop first. It installed without problem on the laptop. so I decided to try it on the Amazon Fire Stick in my bedroom.

I first uninstalled 14.2 TVMC. Then I downloaded the Android version of KODI 15 to my laptop and moved it over to the Fire Stick. So far so good.

KODI 15 came up fine. However, there were no add ons installed, so I added the Fusion directory and installed the addon, which added the KODI Config program. However, the Config program fails.

OK, so I decide to uninstall KODI 15 and re-install TVMC for the Fire Stick. Again, it installed fine and on initialization, it fails during the config step,

So I have one Fire Stick that is in a native setting until I find out vis the forums, what is going wrong. Had I not deleted TVMC and just installed KODI 15, I would have had an easy backup.

Now i am in a trouble shooting mode.

Saving $10,000 A Year With Panama’s Pensionado Discounts

I hate articles that have a sole reason for being written to entice people to move to Panama. I am writing this post after reading Richard Dietrich’s recent article titled “Saving $10,000 A Year With Panama’s Pensionado Discounts”.

I can’t totally fault Richard because he was merely using material from a Real Estate For Profit site. I would never use this type of site for information. I do fault Richard for thinking this is a site that should be promoted. I didn’t check if Richard is advertising his property on that site.

I tried to find the original article, but was unsuccessful in doing so.

However, if you want to read the contents pf the article, I trust that what Richard posted is correct and what I will refer to in this post.

There are some caveats in the article and some information on requirements to get a Pensionado card that have value.

I consider the $10,000 nothing but bait for those who are on the edge of making a decision to move.

Following is my analysis of the contained sheet totaling $10,000.

Let me start by saying that the amounts used in the article are based on prices in Panama, which may be less than in the U.S. or possibly more than in the U.S. Remember you can make numbers look any way you want them to look.

With that, let me take the numbers in the article and add my comments. Continue reading Saving $10,000 A Year With Panama’s Pensionado Discounts

Corruption -Travesty – Robbed – Disappointment

If you are a sports advocate and watched the Panama vs. Mexico match last Night in the Gold Cup you should have felt sorry for Panama and the sport.

I have watched a lot of sporting events and have never watched officiating that absolutely determined the outcome of the game.

It started with a Panamanian player (Tejada) getting ejected with a red flag that at most should have been a yellow flag early in the game. A horrible call.

Panama played a man short for the remainder of the first half and still prevented Mexico from scoring.

In the second half, Panama scored and a well played goal.

Later in the half an foul was called resulting in a penalty kick which Mexico scored.

With about two minutes to go in the official half, another horrible call was made giving Mexico another penalty kick.

There is no question that Panama should have won the game and it was literally given to Mexico by the officials.

Mexico may very well win the Gold Cup and it is no prize because it was bought.

I like good sports and winning and losing is a part of sports, but unfortunately corruption won last night’s game.

Yesterday Was a Great Day

Yesterday, a friend of Lilliam’s came for lunch with her daughter. I BBQ’d ribs and chicken and we had a great time.

I found a current children’s movie on KODI and the daughter enjoyed watching it even though it I could only find it in English.

Our guest had brought some Tequila and I ran to El Rey to get some Triple Sec for margaritas.

Click to enlarge.

While I was in El Rey buying the Triple Sec, I noticed a new bottle of liqueur made in Panama. It is a combination of cream, rum and coffee.

I guess it must be Panama’s version of Irish Cream. It called La Viuda del Café (The Coffee Widow).

Interesting name.

On the back of the bottle is the story behind the name. I will give you my rough translation. Someone else may be able to explain it better.


It seems that in a far away land called Boquete, lived a Count Balega from Slebenbürgen, He founded a tremendous industry from his mysterious coffee beans. He fell in love with a beautiful exotic woman that no one knew.

After the Count’s death his widow began making exotic secret drinks to bring back life. In her seclusion, she wrote a spell and would read it as she drank her liqueur in order to bring back her lover.

The poem is included below the legend.

Here is a photo of the back of the liqueur bottle and with the story and the poem you read to bring back your dead sweetheart.






This liqueur is made in Bajo Boquete.

We didn’t try it yesterday because the strawberry margaritas were sooooooooo good.

We will have to try this bottle tonight. I hope it doesn’t bring back any of my or Lillian’s past lovers.

Feeling a Little More Mortal Today

Lee Zeltzer’s death stirred a surprising feeling of mortality within me. I normally don’t get up and think that my days are fewer today than they were yesterday. However, when another person that I know, with fewer years under the belt than I have, leaves all too early, it shakes my confidence.

What I liked about Lee was that he spoke his mind and beliefs, independent of what others might think. I didn’t agree with Lee on all issues, but I respected his being willing to put himself out there on issues that were important to him.

That is what made Lee, Lee and why he will be missed.

There is no question that he had an impact on Boquete and leaves a legacy that will not be forgotten.

Stepping past that, this post is intended to raise a focus within the rest of us still here to make sure we have our affairs in order. That is a little more complicated for those of us living in Panama. Property ownership being passed on to heirs have different regulations and complications.

Wills written in Panama, but intended to cover assets in the U.S. require some planning.

Healthcare in Panama, to prevent the execution of a will sooner than necessary, needs to be on one’s todo list.

I need to focus on some of these issues. I am sure I am not alone.

As James Dean’s quote on this blog says, “Dream as if you’ll live forever, live as if you’ll die today.”


I mentioned the other day that a new group had formed on FaceBook for Alumni of EDS. It has been amazing to see the group grow and I am enjoying getting reconnected with old friends from this amazing company.

Many have shared they memories and experiences and I thought I would post this experience of mine on my blog.

I will share another memorable experience from my 29 years with EDS.

One of the things I always appreciated about EDS was the support given to employees in time of need. I saw and received this support many times during my career.

While I was managing a group in the VIABLE account, I had an employee named Clara. She was a delightful lady and always had a smile on her face. Every morning she would stop by my office just to say hi and wish me a good day.

One day, I was notified that Clara’s mother had died in Georgia and that she was going to the funeral and needed to take some days off to take care of family matters.

EDS had an unwritten tradition of always having management at the funerals of close family members of employees.

I got the directions of the funeral and date and time and made arrangements to attend. I had to fly to Atlanta and rent a car and drive about thirty miles to a smaller town. I checked into my motel and then drove to a rural area where the family home was.

The funeral was the next day, but I felt I should pay my respects, see if Clara needed anything and let her know that I was there.

The house was fairly easy to find because of all the cars parked along the road. I knocked on the door and a family member answered the knock. I explained I was with EDS and there to support Clara at this sad occasion. Clara came to the door and while sad, broke out in a big smile and gave me a hug and thanked me for being there.

She asked me to come in and have some food that friends and family had brought. Having grown up in a rural area in Oklahoma, I was vary familiar with all of the support families provided those in mourning.

I told Clara I would be at the funeral tomorrow, but would let her visit with her family and friends, and I returned to my motel.

The next morning I got up early to make sure I could find the church and cemetery. I planned on getting there 30 minutes early because I didn’t want to get lost.

I found the church without problem and was directed where to park. I had several people come to my car and I explained I was Clara’s manager and had come from Virginia to pay my respect and provide support for Clara.

When they learned I was Clara’s manager, from the company that Clara had spoken so highly about, they told me the church would probably be full and for me to follow them and they would make sure I got a seat.

I was lead to the back of the church and escorted to a seating area on the left side. Directly in front of me was the minister’s pulpit and behind that was an area for the choir.

I felt very self-conscious for getting all the special attention and was even asked if I wanted to address the congregation. I said, thanks, but no, I was just her to show respect and support Clara.

Clara was my only black employee and I was now the only white person at her mother’s funeral. The church probably held a couple hundred people and was packed, with many people outside for the lack of seats.

There was singing, crying, stories of friendship and loss. It a was joyous occasion on a sad day. Following the church service, everyone walked to the cemetery. Clara made sure I walked with her.

Following the burial service, I told Clara to take the time she needed and to call me if she needed me to do anything. I turned to walk to my car and was greeted by a throng of attendees that wanted to shake my hand and thank me for taking to time to come to the funeral.

No one could believe that a company would show such respect for one of its employees.

Funerals are never enjoyable for me, but this one was different. It left an indelible mark that reminded how small things are often worth a lot more than money.

I have worked for several well known companies, but none to compare with EDS.