Mi Experiencia en una Barbería de Boquete

Blog por Terry Richmeier

Traducido por Generoso Guerra

Cuando nos mudamos inicialmente a Boquete, Panamá, y fui a mi primer corte de pelo en la peluquería, la experiencia fue muy diferente de lo que esperaba. Y por qué fue eso?

En primer lugar, antes de entrar a la tienda, fui recibido con música latina y un grupo de hombres de pie. Cuando entré por la puerta, aún más hombres sentados, otros de pie y echando unas risas mientras esperaban su turno. Inmediatamente pensé, esta es una mala idea y comencé a darme la vuelta para irme. En ese momento, el Barbero me llamó la atención, me hizo una señal y señaló un sofá. Allí en el sofá, un joven cortésmente se puso de pie y me ofreció el sofá.

Entonces empezaron los muchos asentimientos de aceptación de mi presencia, y sonrisas de cortesía, un gringo entre el mar de los panameños. Las conversaciones en español se reanudaron y me senté allí, como si fuera una mosca en la pared, esperando mi turno en la pila de comida en el medio de la habitación!

Cuando miré a mi alrededor, pensé: “Todos estos hombres ya tienen el pelo corto y realmente, esto debería ir bastante rápido”. Y luego empecé a darme cuenta de que esta es una experiencia que necesito aceptar y absorber. No es para nada como en los Estados Unidos. Donde usted es un número el cual entras y sales, pagar rápidamente y pasar al siguiente. Este no es un lugar para obtener ganancias a través de los cortes típicos de línea de montaje. ¡El proceso fue más sobre un club de hombres! Lejos de sus mujeres y mucho hablar mientras te preparan. El tiempo promedio para el corte de pelo real es una media hora habitual. Incluye el corte, la conversación, el pelo en el cuello es recortado y las cuchillas afiladas recorren el vello facial para limpiarlo y crear una atmósfera relajada.

Junto con eso, te rozan con talco y salpican con lo que creo que es la loción de después del afeitado. Y cuando todo está dicho y hecho, recibes tu factura. ¡Una solicitud para pagar $ 3.50!

 Esta experiencia me dejó desconcertado y no agradó mi reloj interno que me dice “Debes apurarte y debes hacer esto”. ¡Esa pelea ha terminado! Ahora soy capaz de apagar ese reloj de sangrado interno de la vida!

Mi estilo con mi cabello y las calvas que de repente aparecieron este año pasado ahora requieren que sea más específico con mis necesidades. Además de tener una barba completa que se redujo a nada, yo, junto con el anterior Gerente de Casa de Montaña, presenté un esquema que transmite el mensaje a mi peluquero permanente permanente. ¡Mi corte de pelo me parece perfecto cada vez! ¡Por supuesto que el costo ha aumentado! Ahora pago $ 7.50 por mi corte de pelo y barba.

Que incluye un suavizante que se coloca en mi barba. En los Estados Unidos mi costo nunca fue menos de $ 25.00 con propina. Aquí, les doy una buena propina, creo que necesitan un salario digno.

 Y, lo que es sorprendente para mí es que estos Barberos están al día con las tendencias que desean jóvenes y mayores. Recientemente, el Gerente de la Oficina de Casa de Montaña Generoso recibió un corte de pelo bastante nuevo. ¡Algo de los 80 que está siendo revivido! Echa un vistazo y cuéntanos lo que piensas?

Lo único que falta de mi corte de cabello aquí en Boquete, Panamá que tuve en los Estados Unidos es un vaso de vino o cerveza mientras te cortas el pelo. Pero, puedes tener eso cuando vengas y te quedes con nosotros ya que le ofrecemos una copa o una cerveza gratis por día! Mientras estés aquí, ¡ven y planea visitar el Barbero!

 Para ustedes, mujeres, también hay muchos peluqueros aquí, desde el nivel más alto hasta inglés. Tu experiencia será igualmente grandiosa. Y, aunque no conozco el costo, ¡puede completar los espacios en blanco para nosotros!

Hazte el corte de cabello mientras está de vacaciones en Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast, puede quitar esa sensación de “Tengo que hacer esto y seguir con mi día” Apague su “conferenciante interno” y disfrute de un corte de pelo durante sus vacaciones en Boquete, Panamá!

The Barber Shop Experience in Boquete

Blog by Terry Richmeier

When we initially moved to Boquete, Panama, and I went for my first haircut at the barber shop, the experience was far from what I expected! And why was that?

First of all, before I even entered the store front, I was greeted by loud Latin music and a bunch of men standing around. As I entered through the door, even more men sitting and standing and having a laugh or two as they waited for their turn. I immediately thought, this is a bad idea and began to turn around to leave. At that moment, the Barber caught my eye and nodded at me and pointed to a sofa. There, on the sofa, a young boy politely stood to his feet and offered me the sofa.

Then began the many nods of acceptance of my presence, and smiles of politeness, a gringo amongst the sea of Panamanians. The conversations in Spanish resumed and I sat there, as if I was a fly on the wall, waiting for my turn at the pile of food in the middle of the room!

As I looked around I thought, “All these men have short hair already and really, this should go quite fast”. And then I began to realize that this is an experience I need to soak up and take in. It’s not at all like it is in the U.S. Where you are a number and to get you in and out and paid quickly and onto the next. This is not a place for making your profit through assembly line haircuts. The process was more about a men’s club! Away from their women and much talk while you are being groomed. The average time for actual haircut is a customary half hour. It includes the cut, conversation, the hair on the neck is trimmed, and sharp blades run across your facial hair cleaning you up and creating a relaxed atmosphere.

Along with that, you are brushed with talcum powder and splashed with what I think is after shave. And when all is said and done, you get your bill. A request to pay $3.50!

This experience left me bewildered and it did not quite please my internal clock that is telling me “You need to hurry and you need to get this done”. That fight is over! I am now able to shut off that internal life bleeding clock!

My style with my hair and the bald spots that suddenly appeared this past year now require me to be more specific with my needs. Along with having a full beard that is cut down to nothing, I, along with Casa de Montaña’s previous Manager, have come up with a schematic that relays the message to my Now Permanent Barber. My hair cut seems perfect to me every time! Of course the cost has gone up! I now pay $7.50 for my haircut and beard trim. Which includes a softener that is placed on my beard. In the U.S. my cost was never less than $25.00 with tip. Here, I tip well, I feel that they need to make a living wage.

And, what’s amazing to me is that these Barbers are keeping up with the trends that are desired by young and old! Recently Casa de Montaña’s own Office Manager Generoso (Meaning Generous) received a fairly new haircut. Something from the 80’s that is being revived! Take a look and let us know what you think?

The only thing that is missing from my haircut here in Boquete, Panama that I had in the U.S. is a glass of wine or beer while you are getting your haircut. But, you can have that when you come and stay with us as we offer you a free glass of either one daily! While you are here, come and plan on checking out the Barber!

 

For you women, there are many hairdressers here as well, from high end to English speaking. Your experience will be equally great. And, though I don’t know about the cost, you can fill in the blanks for us!

Having your haircut while on vacation at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast, can actually take away that feeling of “I have to get this done and get on with my day” Shut down your “internal lecturer” and enjoy a haircut while vacationing in Boquete, Panama!

Martes de Mercado en Boquete: Donde hay algo para todos!

Blog por Terry Richmeier

Traducido por Generoso Guerra

Cuando venga y se quede con nosotros aquí en Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast, se le servirá un desayuno internacional diferente todos los días con la mayoría de los productos que provienen de los vendedores del mercado de los martes. Además de eso, si está aquí un martes, lo alentaremos a ir al mercado de los martes y verifique los diferentes productos locales hechos a mano y de cultivo que tiene para ofrecer. El mercado está abierto de 9 a.m. a 12 del mediodía y se encuentra al otro lado del pequeño puente del centro de la ciudad en el edificio conocido como el Teatro BCP. El mercado ofrece algo para todos. Nuestros favoritos especiales son productos horneados de Mort’s Bakery, productos sin gluten de Panadería Gluten Free Gold, chocolate de diseñador “Chox” y productos frescos de Anna. Mientras esté en el mercado, ¡vea de qué se tratan las “Conversaciones del martes”! A continuación se muestra una historia de la experiencia de Joyce Kinnear con los martes Martes y las conversaciones de los Martes:

 

 Una de las cosas que nos gusta de vivir en Boquete es el mercado de los martes. Para nosotros, satisface nuestra necesidad de un mercado de agricultores, lo que nos permite comprar productos orgánicos, bagels, hummus, alimentos recién hechos de Alemania, Hungría y el Caribe, y también llenar el requisito de nuestro comerciante Joe de alimentos congelados prefabricados que podemos usar durante la semana. El hecho de que dicha comida sea sabrosa, tailandesa, criolla picante o maravillosa India es aún mejor, ya que no tenemos restaurantes para esos y otros alimentos picantes en la zona.

También disfrutamos la mayoría de las charlas del martes. Una de las mujeres de la comunidad pasa mucho tiempo encontrando oradores interesantes sobre una variedad de temas de interés para expatriados en Panamá, desde abogados discutiendo cambios en leyes, a geólogos que describen las acciones potenciales de nuestros volcanes locales, a muchos otros temas . Hoy escuchamos a cuatro voluntarios del Cuerpo de Paz en pequeñas aldeas entre aquí y la frontera costarricense.

Dos de los voluntarios forman parte del Cuerpo de Paz que trabaja en educación y educación del idioma inglés. Otros dos trabajan en temas ambientales. Todos tuvieron discusiones interesantes sobre cómo viven y desarrollan proyectos en comunidades pequeñas para permitir que las personas en esas áreas accedan a la asistencia disponible e incrementen las interacciones con la comunidad. 

De particular interés para nosotros fue un joven que está trabajando para mejorar la calidad de los incendios domésticos entre los indígenas. Ha obtenido subvenciones del gobierno panameño para construir 14 unidades (y está trabajando en 20 más) que reducirán la cantidad de humo que despiden los fuegos de la cocina en el hogar y así reducir las enfermedades relacionadas con el asma, así como mejorar la calidad del aire local. 

Otro joven voluntario está trabajando en una escuela de 700 estudiantes en Volcan, un pueblo de unos 15,000 habitantes cerca de la frontera. Ella está haciendo muchas cosas, desde la enseñanza de inglés, hasta la enseñanza de clases de ciencia a los principales clubes y grupos de estudiantes. Su escuela le dio una habitación y asistencia para desarrollar la primera biblioteca en esa ciudad o escuela. Con los fondos que pudo obtener de su exiguo estipendio y los fondos igualmente escasos de la maestra local, han podido comenzar una biblioteca con aproximadamente 20 libros en una escuela de 700 estudiantes de primaria. 

Ella nos dijo que entre estos estudiantes de bajos ingresos (y muchos indígenas), la comprensión de lectura es extremadamente baja. Las familias son en su mayoría analfabetas, no hay libros disponibles y los estudiantes nunca aprenden a comprender. La mayoría no pasa los exámenes de ingreso a la universidad porque no pueden aprobar los exámenes en un nivel de cuarto grado. Este voluntario está trabajando con el gobierno local, los maestros y la comunidad para tratar de aumentar la comprensión de lectura y mejorar el potencial de vida futura de estos estudiantes.  

Fue inspirador. Al escuchar las charlas, varias personas en la audiencia tuvieron ideas sobre cómo ayudar a los voluntarios y las comunidades locales a ayudar a mejorar las vidas de estos estudiantes y sus familias. 

Este pequeño pueblo rodeado por las montañas de Boquete, Panamá, es un lugar maravilloso para reunir desde souvenirs hasta estimulación intelectual. Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast está extremadamente orgulloso de nuestra comunidad, el voluntariado y el mercado de los martes. ¡Ven y quédate con nosotros y experimenta este lugar especial!

Boquete’s Tuesday Market: Something for everyone!

Blog by Terry Richmeier

When you come and stay with us here at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast, you will be served a different International Breakfast daily with most of the products coming from the Tuesday Market vendors. Along with that, if you are here on a Tuesday, we will encourage you to go to the Tuesday Market and check out all the different locally made and grown products it has to offer! The market is open from 9 AM to 12 Noon and is located across the small bridge downtown in the building known as the BCP Teatro. The market offers something for everyone. Our special favorites are baked goods by Mort’s Bakery, Gluten Free goods from Gluten Free Gold Bakery, designer “Chox” chocolate and Anna’s fresh produce.  While you are at the market, see what “Tuesday Talks” are about! Below is a story of Joyce Kinnear’s experience with the Tuesday Market and Tuesday Talks:

One of the things we like about living in Boquete is the Tuesday market. For us, it fills our need for a Farmer’s Market—enabling us to purchase organic produce, bagels, hummus, freshly made food from Germany, Hungary, and the Caribbean, and also filling our Trader Joe’s requirement for premade frozen food that we can whip up during the week. The fact that said food is tasty Thai, spicy Creole, or wonderful Indian is even better, since we lack restaurants for those and other spicy foods in the area.

We also enjoy most of the Tuesday talks. One of the women in the community spends a lot of time finding interesting speakers on a variety of topics of interest to expats in Panama, from attorneys discussing changes in laws, to geologists describing the potential actions of our local volcanoes, to so many other topics. Today, we listened to four Peace Corps volunteers in small villages between here and the Costa Rican border.

Two of the volunteers are with the part of the Peace Corps that works in education and English language education. Two others work on environmental issues. They all had interesting discussions about how they live and develop projects in small communities to enable people in those areas to access available assistance and increase community interactions.
Of particular interest to us was one young man who is working to improve the quality of home cooking fires among the indigenous. He has gotten grants from the Panamanian government to construct 14 units (and
is working on 20 more) that will reduce the amount of smoke put off by cooking fires in the home and thus reduce asthma related diseases, as well as improve local air quality.

Another young volunteer is working in a school of 700 students in Volcan, a town of about 15,000 near the border. She is doing many things, from teaching English, to teaching Science classes to leading student clubs and groups. Her school gave her a room and some assistance in developing the first library in that town or school. With funds she was able to get from her own meager stipend and local teacher’s equally meager funds, they have been able to start a library with about 20 books in a school of 700 elementary students.
She told us that among these low income (and many indigenous) students, reading comprehension is extremely low. Families are mostly illiterate, books are not around, and students never learn comprehension. The majority fail college entrance exams, because they are unable to pass tests at a fourth grade level. This volunteer is working with the local government, teachers and community to try to increase reading comprehension and improve future life potential for these students.

It was inspiring. Listening to the talks gave several people in the audience ideas for ways to assist the volunteers and local communities to help to enhance the lives of these students and their families.

This small town surrounded by the Mountains of Boquete, Panama is a wonderful place to gather anything from souvenirs to intellectual stimulation! Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast is extremely proud of our community, volunteerism, and the Tuesday Market. Come and stay with us and experience this special place!

Cobertura de telefonía celular en Boquete, Panamá

Blog por Terry Richmeier

Traducido por Generoso Guerra

Cuando nos mudamos a América Central por primera vez y nos quedamos en la ciudad de Panamá, pensamos: “¡¿Qué hemos hecho?!” ¡No teníamos ninguna comunicación con los EE. UU! Dentro de las 24 horas de la llegada, corrimos hasta Albrook Mall y compramos un teléfono económico, una tarjeta SIM y algunos minutos de teléfono. ¡Me sentí como Navidad a principios de agosto! Nos convencimos de que ahora estaríamos bien.

Sin embargo, mientras estaba sentado en la cama en el condominio que alquilamos y enchufamos el teléfono para comenzar a cargarlo (tuvimos que quedarnos en la ciudad de Panamá para terminar nuestro proceso de residencia), me di cuenta de que este es un teléfono local. Sin forma de llamar a mi mamá y a mi papá o a mis amigos en los Estados Unidos, lo cual necesitaba desesperadamente hacer. Me sentí solo y asustado. Entonces comencé a buscar diferentes formas de comunicarme con Wi-Fi limitado. (Nuestro condominio solo tenía un pequeño dispositivo para Wi-Fi.) Bueno, no fue fácil, sin embargo, terminamos en Skype haciendo videollamada con nuestra amiga quien se haría cargo de llevar su computadora portátil a mis padres y decidimos hacer una llamada semanal con ellos. Boom, conectado de nuevo!

Entonces, mi pregunta es, “¿Es solo un problema aquí en Panamá? ¿O en todo el mundo? ¿Es mi experiencia una experiencia aislada basada en mi propia falta de conocimiento?

He aquí otra historia de un reciente transplante en Boquete Amy Kinnear y su experiencia con una empresa operadora de teléfono en EE. UU. Antes de mudarse aquí a Boquete, Panama:

Las alegrías de la comunicación en el extranjero. Antes de obtener un nuevo operadora de teléfono celular, me aseguré de comunicarles que era extremadamente importante que tuviera un teléfono que funcionara en Panamá. Me prometieron que cuando fuera a Panamá tendría texto e información ilimitados, además de poder hacer llamadas. Simplemente sería más caro. Yo estúpidamente los creí. Unos meses más tarde decidí mudarme a Panamá y volaría a la ciudad de Panamá para reunirme con mis padres, para nuestra conexión con David, Panamá. Solo había estado en Panamá una vez y estaba nerviosa porque mi español es horrible. Al principio no estaba demasiada estresada porque mi operadora me aseguró varias veces que mi teléfono funcionaría en Panamá. Simplemente llamaba y avisaba a mis padres cuando llegué a la ciudad de Panamá, para poder reunirnos antes del vuelo a David. Apenas el avión aterrizó, los llamé. ¡Sin señal!Mi corazón se desvaneció. ¿Qué iba a hacer si necesitaban contactarme? “No te preocupes”, me dije. Seguiría sus instrucciones sobre cómo llegar a mi próxima puerta. Tenía la intuición de que no iban a hacer nuestra conexión. ¿Cómo diablos iba a llegar a Boquete? ¿Qué iba a hacer una vez que llegue allí? No tenía forma de entrar a su casa sin las llaves, y necesitaba un lugar donde quedarme. Si mi teléfono hubiera funcionado como lo prometieron, podría haber llamado a mi gente. Ni siquiera tenía datos como me dijeron que lo haría. Así que tampoco pude enviarles mensajes en Facebook. Pude pagar para usar el Wi-Fi del aeropuerto. Traté de contactar a mi madre en Messenger, pero su teléfono no funcionaba. Tuve que enviarle un mensaje a mi ex novio, para que pudiera enviar mensajes de texto a mi madre para ver cuál era el plan mientras yo también estaba enviando mensajes a todas las personas que había conocido en Panamá el año pasado para ver si podía llevarme de David a Boquete una vez que aterrizaba. Finalmente, a través Facebook llamé a Manzar para ver si Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast tenía una habitación disponible y si conocían a alguien, para pedir un taxi. Todo funcionó al final, pero no hace falta decir que estoy muy molesta con mi ex proveedor. Pasé algunas semanas sin un teléfono local, pero me sentí incómoda solo podía llamar si estaba conectada a Wi-Fi. Los teléfonos son muy asequibles aquí. Tengo un teléfono local muy básico, pero es bueno saber que puedo comunicarme con la gente mientras estoy fuera, ¡y solo cuesta alrededor de $ 20!

Entonces, hay varias opciones disponibles para ti aquí en Panamá. Primero, si solo está viajando aquí, puede obtener cobertura internacional contactando a su propio proveedor de telefonía celular. O puede comprar un teléfono de uso mundial. Y otra opción es comprar una tarjeta SIM a su llegada para que tenga un número de teléfono local y luego comprar minutos a través de una tarjeta de prepago de teléfono celular. Y también recuerde que puede comprar un plan de datos mensual que tiene un uso ilimitado de datos. ¡Esto sería bueno para usar en cualquier lugar donde haya WiFi y puede conectarse con su familia y amigos en su casa a través de WhatsApp o contactar a un Uber o taxista sin que le cueste más dinero!

 Ahora, si planea mudarse a Panamá, aparte de las opciones enumeradas anteriormente, puede traer un teléfono de Vonage y conservar su número local. ¡Podrás mantenerte en contacto con toda tu familia y amigos! Aquí en Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast sabemos lo importante que es estar conectado. Hacemos nuestro mejor esfuerzo para mantenerlo conectado y podemos ayudarlo a contactar personas cercanas o lejanas. Por lo tanto, venga y quédese con nosotros y relájese sabiendo que puede contactarse nuevamente en su casa.

Cell phone coverage in Boquete, Panama

Blog by Terry Richmeier

The first month that we moved to Central America and stayed in Panama City, Panama. We thought, “What have we done!?” We were without communication to the states! Within days of arrival, we ran up to the mall, purchased some in-expensive phones and minutes, along with a phone number! Now, we thought, we will be ok!

However, I sat on the bed in the condo that we were renting and plugged in the phone to start charging it. (We had to stay in the City in order to finish up our residency.) And realized, this is a local phone with no way to call my Mom and Dad or my friends back in the states! Which I desperately needed to call! I felt lonely and scared!

So, I began to look for different ways to communicate with limited Wi-Fi. (Our condo only had a small phone device for Wi-Fi.) Well, it wasn’t easy, however, we did end up Skyping to our friend who would take over her laptop to my parents and we had set up a weekly. Boom, connected again!

So, my question is, “Is it just a problem here in Panama? Or all around the world? Is my experience an isolated experience based on my own lack of knowledge?”

Here is another story from Amy Kinnear and her experience with a U.S. carrier before moving here to Boquete, Panama:

The Joys of Communicating Overseas. Before getting a new cellphone carrier, I made sure to let them know that it was extremely important that I had a phone that could work in Panama. They promised me that when I went to Panama I would was have unlimited text and data, as well as be able to make calls. It would just be more expensive. I stupidly believed them. A few months later I decided to move to Panama and would be flying to Panama City to meet my parents, for our connection to David, Panama. I had only been to Panama once before and was nervous because my Spanish is horrible. I was not stressing much at first because my carrier assured me multiple times that my phone would work in Panama. I would just call and let my parents know when I got to Panama City, so that we could meet before the flight to David. A soon as the plane landed, I called them. No signal! My heart dropped. What was I going to do if they needed to reach me? “No worries,” I told myself. I would follow their instructions on how to get to my next gate. I had a gut feeling that they were not going to make our connection. How on earth was I going to get to Boquete? What was I going to do once I got there? I had no way to get in their house without the keys, and I needed a place to stay. If my carrier would have worked the way they promised, I could have just called my folks. I did not even have data like I was told I would. So I could not message them on Facebook either. I was able to pay to use the airport’s Wi-Fi. I tried to contact my mom on messenger, but her phone was not working. I had to message my ex-boyfriend, so that he could text my mom to see what the plan was while I was also messaging everyone I had met in Panama last year to see if I could get a ride from David to Boquete once I landed. Finally I Facebook called Manzar to see if Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast had a room available and if they knew anyone I could call for a taxi. It all worked out in the end, but needless to say I am very upset with my ex-provider. I went a few weeks without a local phone, but I felt uncomfortable only to be able to call if I was connected to Wi-Fi. The phones are very affordable here. I have a very basic local phone, but it is nice to know that I can communicate with people while I am out and about, and it only cost about $20!

So, there are several options available for you here in Panama. First, if you are just traveling here, you can get International coverage by contacting your own cell phone provider. Or you can purchase a worldwide usage phone. And another option is to purchase a SIM card upon arrival so you have a local phone number and then purchase minutes through a purchased cell phone minutes card. And also remember that you can buy a monthly data plan which has unlimited data use. This would be good for use wherever there is WIFI and you can connect with family and friends back at home through WhatsApp or contact an Uber or taxi driver without costing any more money!

Now, if you are planning to relocate to Panama, outside of the options that are listed above, you can bring with you a Vonage phone and keep your local number. You will be able to stay in touch with all your family and friends!

We here at Casa de Montaña bed and breakfast know how important staying connected is! We do our best to keep you connected and we can help you with contacting people close or far! So, come and stay with us and relax knowing that you can get in contact back at home!

Estrés a fin de año, NO este año en Boquete, Panamá!!!!

Blog por Terry Richmeier

Traducido por Generoso Guerra

Viernes Negro, ofertas negras, compra esto, fiesta aquí, fiesta allá, gasta más dinero, come, come y come… Estas actividades no tienen fin…

Aquí en Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast desafortunadamente también lo encontramos estresante en Boquete, Panamá. El hecho que no es fácil moverse alrededor con todo el tráfico, celebraciones de fiestas Patrías y próximas fiestas de fin de año. En Noviembre y Diciembre hay un sorprendente número de días libres. Dos diferentes días de Independencia, Día de la Bandera, Día de las Madres, Día del trabajo, desfile de los Bomberos, Cabalgata, solo por nombrar algunas.

 

En el Greenberg Quinlan Rosner informe de investigación, en los Estados Unidos, trabajar largas horas, batallar con el tráfico, cuidar de los padres envejeciendo y pagar las cuentas es en sí muy estresante, luego agregar días festivos! Estos son algunos de los hallazgos clave:

  • El estrés de días festivos tiene en particular un gran impacto en la mujer, ya que toman cargo de las celebraciones de días festivos, particularmente en la preparación de comidas y la decoración del hogar. Las mujeres son más propensas a reporter un aumento de estrés más que los hombres durante la época de fin de año. Además les resulta más difícil relajarse durante días festivos y es más probable que caigan en malos hábitos para controlar su estrés, como la comodidad de comer.
  • El estrés de días festivo tiene un impacto en las personas de ingresos medio bajo. Holiday stress has an impact on lower middle income individuals. Este grupo siente el peso del estrés del trabajo más la prisa de la temporada para encontrar tiempo para terminar todo. Además sus preocupaciones sobre el dinero se ven incrementadas por el comercionalismo de la temporada y la presión para gastar mucho dinero.
  • Las emociones son altas en días festivos: Personas en los Estados Unidos transmiten sentimientos de amor, felicidad y buen humor. El aspecto más importante de estos días festivos es la oportunidad de conectarse o reconectarse con amigos y familia.

 

  • Las personas en Los Estados Unidos son más propensas a sentir el incremento y no reducción de estrés durante los días festivos. Los días festivos tienden a ser un dolor de cabeza para muchos, una pérdida de dinero para otros, pérdida de tiempo, el bombo y el comercionalismo de la temporada causa un mayor estrés a las personas en Los Estados Unidos.
  • Durante los días festivos, el estés adquiere un carácter diferente a las otras épocas del año.

Tanto hombres como mujeres se sienten obligados a hacer de los días festivos lo mejor posible para sus familias.

 

No pude encontrar un informe relativo a Boquete, Panamá, sin embargo. Yo creo que es igual de estresante. Entonces también  quería idear algunas posibles soluciones. Yo pensé en como los masajes me quitan el estrés, por al menos unos días!. Nosotros tenemos una increíble pareja que hacen un estupendo trabajo al tratarse de masajes. Luego está la naturaleza, sentarse y disfrútar de una copa de vino. Leer un libro, asistir a una clase de arte, observar aves y esto es sólo por nombrar algunas. Todo esto puedes hacerlo en Boquete, Panamá, mientras te hospedas con nosotros en Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast.

Sin embargo, si no está en tus planes de este año, aquí hay otras opciones de la Clíninca Mayo para “desestresar” tus días festivos.

Cuando el estrés está en su punto, es difícil detenerse y reagruparse. Trate de prevenir el estrés y la depression en primer lugar, especialmente si las festividades han cobrado un precio emocional en el pasado.

  1. Reconoce tus sentimientos. Si alguien cercano a tí ha muerto recientemente o no puedes estar con tus seres queridos, date cuenta que es normal sentir tristeza y dolor. ESTA BIEN tomarse el tiempo para llorar o expresar tus sentimientos. No puedes forzarte a estar feliz sólo porque es temporada festiva.
  2. Alcanza. Si te sientes sólo y aislado, busca convivencia ya sea religiosa u otro evento social. Te pueden ofrecer ayuda y compañerismo. Trabajar como voluntario en tu tiempo libre para ayudar a otros también es una buena manera de subir el animo y ampliar tu lista de amistades.
  1. Ser realista. Las vacaciones no tienen que ser perfectas o simplemente como el año pasado. A medida que las familias cambian y crecen, las tradiciones y los rituales también cambian a menudo. Elija algunos para aferrarse, y esté abierto a crear nuevos. Por ejemplo, si sus hijos adultos no pueden ir a su casa, busque nuevas formas de celebrar juntos, como compartir fotos, correos electrónicos o videos.

 

  1. Dejar a un lado las diferencias. Trate de aceptar a los familiares y amigos tal como son, incluso si no cumplen con todas sus expectativas. Guarde las quejas hasta un momento más apropiado para la discusión. Y sea comprensivo si otros se molestan o se angustian cuando algo sale mal. Lo más probable es que también estén sintiendo los efectos del estrés y la depresión durante las vacaciones.
  2. Apegarse al presupuesto. Antes de ir de compras de regalos y alimentos, decida cuánto dinero puede gastar. Luego, cumpla con su presupuesto. No trates de comprar la felicidad con una avalancha de regalos.

Pruebe estas alternativas:

    • Donar a una organización benéfica en nombre de alguien.
    • Dar regalos hechos en casa.
    • Comience un intercambio de regalos familiares.

6.     Planea con anticipación. Reserve días específicos para ir de compras, cocinar, visitar amigos y otras actividades. Planee sus menús y luego haga su lista de compras. Eso ayudará a evitar luchas de último minuto para comprar ingredientes olvidados. Y asegúrese de alinear la ayuda para la preparación de la fiesta y la limpieza.

  1. Aprende a decir que no. Decir que sí cuando deberías decir que no puede hacerte sentir resentido y abrumado. Los amigos y colegas entenderán si no puedes participar en cada proyecto o actividad. Si no es posible decir que no cuando su jefe le pide que trabaje horas extras, intente eliminar algo más de su agenda para compensar el tiempo perdido.
  2. No abandones los hábitos saludables. No dejes que las fiestas se conviertan en una regalía para todos. La indulgencia excesiva solo aumenta su estrés y culpa.

Pruebe estas sugerencias:

    • Coma bocadillos saludables antes de las fiestas para que no se exceda con los dulces, el queso o las bebidas.
    • Duerma lo suficiente.
    • Incorpore actividad física regular en cada día.
  1. Tómate un respiro. Tómate un tiempo para ti. Pasar 15 minutos sólo, sin distracciones, puede refrescarlo lo suficiente como para manejar todo lo que necesita hacer. Encuentre algo que reduzca el estrés despejando su mente, disminuyendo su respiración y restaurando la calma interior.

Algunas opciones pueden incluir:

    • Dar un paseo por la noche y observar las estrellas.
    • Escuchando música relajante.
    • Recibir un masaje. (Podemos ayudarte con esto si estás en Boquete)
    • Leer un libro.
  1. Busca ayuda profesional si la necesitas. Busque ayuda profesional si la necesita. A pesar de sus mejores esfuerzos, puede sentirse triste o ansioso, plagado de molestias físicas, incapaz de dormir, irritable y sin esperanza, e incapaz de enfrentar los quehaceres rutinarios. Si estos sentimientos duran un tiempo, hable con su médico o un profesional de la salud mental. (¿Sabía que Manzar Lari es un Consejero Vital certificado y ofrece una consulta inicial gratuita de media hora?)
  • Toma el control de los días festivos.

No dejes que las fiestas se conviertan en algo que temes. En su lugar, tome medidas para evitar el estrés y la depresión que pueden descender durante las festividades. Aprenda a reconocer sus desencadenantes navideños, como las presiones financieras o las demandas personales, para que pueda combatirlos antes de que deriven en una crisis. Con un poco de planificación y algunas ideas positivas, puedes encontrar la paz y disfrutar de las fiestas.

  1. Toma un avión (Personalmente mi favorito y agregado a la lista por mí)

¡Sube a un avión y baja, pasa las vacaciones o en cualquier otra época del año en Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast!

Holiday Stressors, NOT this year, in Boquete, Panama!!!!

Blog by Terry Richmeier

Black Friday, Black sale, buy this, a party here, a party there, spend more money, eat, eat, eat…..And these activities are endless….

We here at Unfortunately, Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast finds the same stressors in Boquete, Panama. From the fact that it’s not easy getting around to the congestion and celebrations of the holidays. In November and December, there are an amazing number of holidays. Two different Independence days, Mother’s day, Labor Day, Fireman’s parade, Horse Parade, just to name a few.

 

In the Greenberg Quinlan Rosner research report, in the U.S., working long hours, fighting traffic, caring for aging parents, paying bills are stressful enough, then to add the holidays! Here are some of the key findings:

  • Holiday stress has a particular impact on women, who take charge of many of the holiday celebrations, particularly the tasks related to preparing meals and decorating the home. Women are more likely than men to report an increase of stress during the holiday season. In addition, they have a harder time relaxing during the holidays and are more likely to fall into bad habits to manage their stress, like comfort eating.
  • Holiday stress has an impact on lower middle income individuals. This group feels the weight of stress from work plus the seasonal rush to find time to get everything done. In addition, their worries about money are heightened by the commercialism of the season and the pressure to spend a lot of money.
  • Emotions run high during the holidays: people in the United States report feelings of love,

happiness, and high spirits. The most important aspects of the holidays are the opportunities

to connect or reconnect with friends and family.

  • People in the United States are more likely to feel their stress increases rather than decrease during the holidays. The holidays can be a hectic time for many, and a lack of money, a lack of time, and the hype and commercialism of the season causes increased stress for people in the U.S.
  • During the holidays, stress takes on a different character than at other times of the year.

Men and women alike feel a duty to make the holidays the best they can for their families.

 

I couldn’t find a study for Boquete, Panama, however, I believe the stressors are the same. So, I wanted to come up with some possible solutions as well. I thought about how massage takes away my stressors, at least for a Few days! We have an amazing couple that do a really great job at massage. Then there is nature, and sitting and drinking a glass of wine. Reading a book, attending an art class, or bird watching, just to name a few. All of which can be done here in Boquete, Panama, while staying with us at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast.

However, if that’s not in the plans for you this year, here are some other options from the Mayo Clinic to “de-stress” your holiday:

When stress is at its peak, it’s hard to stop and regroup. Try to prevent stress and depression in the first place, especially if the holidays have taken an emotional toll on you in the past.

  1. Acknowledge your feelings. If someone close to you has recently died or you can’t be with loved ones, realize that it’s normal to feel sadness and grief. It’s OK to take time to cry or express your feelings. You can’t force yourself to be happy just because it’s the holiday season.
  2. Reach out. If you feel lonely or isolated, seek out community, religious or other social events. They can offer support and companionship. Volunteering your time to help others also is a good way to lift your spirits and broaden your friendships.
  3. Be realistic. The holidays don’t have to be perfect or just like last year. As families change and grow, traditions and rituals often change as well. Choose a few to hold on to, and be open to creating new ones. For example, if your adult children can’t come to your house, find new ways to celebrate together, such as sharing pictures, emails or videos.
  4. Set aside differences. Try to accept family members and friends as they are, even if they don’t live up to all of your expectations. Set aside grievances until a more appropriate time for discussion. And be understanding if others get upset or distressed when something goes awry. Chances are they’re feeling the effects of holiday stress and depression, too.
  5. Stick to a budget. Before you go gift and food shopping, decide how much money you can afford to spend. Then stick to your budget. Don’t try to buy happiness with an avalanche of gifts.

Try these alternatives:

    • Donate to a charity in someone’s name.
    • Give homemade gifts.
    • Start a family gift exchange.
  1. Plan ahead. Set aside specific days for shopping, baking, visiting friends and other activities. Plan your menus and then make your shopping list. That’ll help prevent last-minute scrambling to buy forgotten ingredients. And make sure to line up help for party prep and cleanup.
  2. Learn to say no. Saying yes when you should say no can leave you feeling resentful and overwhelmed. Friends and colleagues will understand if you can’t participate in every project or activity. If it’s not possible to say no when your boss asks you to work overtime, try to remove something else from your agenda to make up for the lost time.
  3. Don’t abandon healthy habits. Don’t let the holidays become a free-for-all. Overindulgence only adds to your stress and guilt.

Try these suggestions:

    • Have a healthy snack before holiday parties so that you don’t go overboard on sweets, cheese or drinks.
    • Get plenty of sleep.
    • Incorporate regular physical activity into each day.
  1. Take a breather. Make some time for yourself. Spending just 15 minutes alone, without distractions, may refresh you enough to handle everything you need to do. Find something that reduces stress by clearing your mind, slowing your breathing and restoring inner calm.

Some options may include:

    • Taking a walk at night and stargazing.
    • Listening to soothing music.
    • Getting a massage. (We can help you with this if you are in Boquete)
    • Reading a book.
  1. Seek professional help if you need it. Despite your best efforts, you may find yourself feeling persistently sad or anxious, plagued by physical complaints, unable to sleep, irritable and hopeless, and unable to face routine chores. If these feelings last for a while, talk to your doctor or a mental health professional. (Did you know that Manzar Lari is a certified Life Coach and offers a free half hour initial consultation?)
  • Take control of the holidays

Don’t let the holidays become something you dread. Instead, take steps to prevent the stress and depression that can descend during the holidays. Learn to recognize your holiday triggers, such as financial pressures or personal demands, so you can combat them before they lead to a meltdown. With a little planning and some positive thinking, you can find peace and joy during the holidays.

  1. Catch a Plane (My personal favorite and added to the list by me)

Get on a plane and come down and spend the holidays, or any other time of year at Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast!

 

 

 

 

El artista dentro de tí: Grupo de Expresiones Creativas de Boquete!

Blog by Terry Richmeier

Traducido por Generoso Guerra

Algunas semanas pasadas, Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast, tuvo un día de Artistas. Lo llamamos “Grupo de Expresiones Creativas”. Este día fue para tomar un tiempo libre de nuestra ocupada agenda, sentarse y con ideas propias crear! Invitamos a nuestros amigos más cercanos. TODOS vinieron!

Hubieron tantas formas diferentes para representar el arte! Algunos usamos Tiza acrílica; otros usaron solo papel y lapíz. Algunos usaron papel periódico sumergido en agua con arina y aún así otros insistieron que ellos no tenían talento y crearon el mejor arte culinario conocido en Boquete, Panamá!  Otros crearon obras de arte con plantas vivas y otros trajeron libros para leer y así ayudarnos a crear en grupo! Estarías impresionado por los creadores de los diferentes platillos, aperitivos y picadas desde más allá de las ventanas a la cocina abierta!

¡El tiempo pasó tan rápido y el proyecto produjo un increíble conjunto de obras de arte!

Yo mismo, teniendo poco talent, fuí capaz de producer una obra increíble de mediados del siglo 1960 y sorprendentemente parece obra de un niño de cuarto grado! La cual regalé a una amiga especial, le dije a ella que lo pusiera en su refrigerador pero que le dijera a todos: “Es de mi nieto que está en el cuarto grado”. Luego me preparé para crear una obra de arte que empezó luciendo como algo del hoyo en el cual Alicia cayó en el libro “Alicia en el país de las maravíllas”! Tuve éxito total! La nueva obra de arte se convirtió en una sorprendente flor psicodelica de 1960. Mi tema, “Nuevamente atascado en los 60’s”!

Hace muchos años, Manzar tomó un viaje con destino al arte a través de un libro llamado “The Artists Way” (El Camino del Artista) por, Julia Cameron, el libro lo tomó en pequeños retiros para de esa manera descubrir el artista dentro de él. Años más tarde el artista dentro de Manzar sigue atrapado en silencio. (Una pequeña broma de mi parte) Esta bien, no es cierto; ¡él ha estado creando una gran cantidad de obras de arte y es inspirador! Después de todo la diferencia entre basura y obra de arte depende del ojo del observador. ¡Algún día pondremos todas sus creaciones en nuestras paredes!, ¡Enserio!.

Eso no es todo, hubo muchísimo más arte que tocamos ese día, estilos de arte como; Pintura con tempera de agua, escultura de arcilla, artes marciales y convertir vieja basura en arte para decorar nuestro jardín, solo por mencionar algunas…

Un amigo tomó una vieja plancha, la desarmó, añadió otros materiales y conform este tipo de criatura el cual denominó “Roca Frágil”. ¡Fué muy solicitado! ¡Bueno, al menos por mí! La obtendré de alguna manera!

¡Fué sólo un pequeño día de creatividad! Boquete, Panamá está lleno de inspiración, afirmación y relajación todo en orden para que seas creative. Trae tus materiales de arte, ven y quédate con nosotros, ¡inspirate y crea!

The Artist in us all: Boquete Creative Expressions Group!

Blog by Terry Richmeier

A couple of weeks ago, Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast, had an Artists day. We called it the “Creative Expressions Group”. This was a day to take the time out of our busy schedules and sit with your thoughts and create!  We invited some of our closest friends. They ALL came!

There were so many different forms of art represented! Some of us used Chalk Pastels; others used just a pencil and paper. Some used newspaper dipped in flour and water and still others insisted that they had no talent and created the finest edible food art known to Boquete, Panama! Others created live plant art and even some brought a book to read and instead helped create in a group setting! You would have been impressed by those creating different foods, appetizers and snacks from beyond the windows to the open kitchen!

The time went so fast and the project produced an amazing set of art work!

 

I myself, having minimal talent, was able to produce a wonderful 1960’s mid-century piece of art that looks amazingly just like a 4th grader! In which, I gave to a special friend, told her she could have it for her refrigerator but to tell everyone, “it’s from my 4 year old grandchild”. Then set out to create a piece of art that started to look like something of the hole that Alice fell into in the book “Alice in Wonderland”! I was completely successful in the cover-up! The new artwork became an amazing psychedelic 1960’s flower power paper! My theme, “Stuck in the 60’s again”!

Several years back, Manzar took a journey in art through the book called, “The Artists Way”, by, Julia Cameron, the book took him on little mini retreats to discover the artist that is within you. Years later, Manzar’s artist is still trapped and silent. (My little joke) Ok, that’s not true; he has been creating a great deal of artwork and is very inspiring!  After all, the difference between garbage and art is the eye of the viewer. Someday, we will display his creations on our walls! Seriously!

That’s not all, there was so much more art that we have not tapped into that day, art such as, art classes in water color, cement sculpturing, martial arts, and turning old junk into usable and yard worthy art, just to name a few.

A friend took an old iron, tore it apart, threw some other medal on it and created this “Fragile Rock” type looking creature. It is well sought after! Well, at least by me! I’m going to get it from him somehow!

And this is just a small, single day in creativity! Boquete, Panama is full of inspiration, affirmation and relaxation in order for you to be creative. Bring your art supplies and come and stay with us, get inspired and create!

 

Macho, Macho Men: Cuento sobre dos hombres en Boquete, Panamá.

Blog por: Terry Richmeier

Traducido por: Generoso Guerra.

Aquí en Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast hemos conocido muchas personas de diferentes partes del mundo! Conocimos todas estas personas mientras estaban en el momento más feliz de su vida; en sus vacaciones!.

Que hay acerca de los locales? hacia que se dirigen los turistas cuando llegan a Panamá y especialmente cuando llegan a Boquete? 

Encontrarán que los locales son personas atentas y amables, si tratas de hablar Español aunque sea un poco los Boqueteños te darán una gran bienvenida con una gran sonrisa!. Los panameños y especialmente los Boqueteños adoran la idea de mostrarles a los turistas su país y su mundo!

El mundo tiene tantas personas con diferentes tipos de personalidades, puedes estar casi seguro que reconocerás algunas personalidades familiares cuando visites Boquete, Panamá. Desde arrogantes hasta una presencia que abarca todo con amor!

Un breve cuento de nuestra amiga, Joyce Kinnear habla acerca de dos hombres los cuales reconoció como El bueno y El no tan bueno! En esta historia Joyce habla acerca de una fundación la cual Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast ayuda a traves de donaciones.

Un cuento acerca dos hombres:

Esta semana conocí al estereotipo de macho latinoamericano por primera vez de todos los años que hemos estado visitando y ahora viviendo en Centro América. Este hombre era todo lo que detestamos acerca del estereotipo—macho, dominante, totalmente desconsiderado con otros, especialmente con mujeres y trabajadores de clase baja o media. Todo esto lo hacía con un guiño y una actitud donde parecía que el pensaba todo esto lo hacía la cosa más sexy en este mundo. (Cuando es todo lo contrario, la mayoría de las mujeres en el bus querían vomitar)

El Segundo hombre lo conocí hoy en un evento para la fundación, el cual provee terapias, habilidades y socialización para niños y adultos discapacitados, así como tambien para los guardianes. En este evento un hombre sobresalió. Él guíaba a su hijo, quien parece tener parálisis cerebral y algunos problemas de función cerebral, cuidadosamente a su silla bailaba con su hijo asegurandosé de que disfrutara y pasara una tarde agradable. Descubrí que la madre del niño y esposa de dicho hombre habría muerto unos años atrás en un accidente de carro. Esta hombre se ha preocupado por su hijo y claramente adora al niño.

Quiero señalar que mientras he conocido un ejemplo como el del primer hombre, han habido muchos como el segundo tipo alrededor mío en Panamá. Tal vez el Viejo y cansado estereotipo del hombre latinoamericano necesita un cambio mayor a la de un hombre que ama a su familia, trabaja duro y aún así baila con ellos para asegurarse que ellos tienen una vida plena y feliz, sin importer las habilidades de los niños.

Entonces, ven a Boquete, Panamá! Quédate con nosotros en Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast. Déjanos ayudarte a establecer un tiempo para que visites la fundación o un programa diferente en los grupos de voluntarios aquí en Boquete. Invierte un tiempo viendo los diferentes tipos de personalidades de los Panameños y especialmente de la gente Boqueteña! No te arrepentirás ni un poco.

 

 

Macho, Macho Men: A tale of two men in Boquete, Panama.

Blog by Terry Richmeier

Here at Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast we have met people from all over the world! We meet all of these people while they are at their happiest time in their life -they are on vacation!

And what about the locals? What do tourist run into when they arrive in Panama and especially in Boquete?

They will find kind and caring locals and if you try to speak Spanish at all, Boquetenians will greet you with a great big smile! Panamanians and especially Boquetenians, love to show tourists their country and their world!

With the world having so many different personalities, you can pretty much be assured you will recognize some familiar personalities when you are touring Boquete, Panama. From arrogance, to a presence of all-encompassing love!

One short story from a friend of ours, Joyce Kinnear talks about two men she recognized as good and not so good! In this story, Joyce talks about a foundation that Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast supports through donations.

A tale of two men:

This week I met the stereotypical macho, Latin American man for the first time in the years we’ve been visiting and now living in Central America. He was everything I dislike about the stereotype–macho, dominant, totally inconsiderate of others, especially women and poor workers. All of this was done with a wink and an attitude where he seemed to think this all made him the sexiest thing alive (as opposed to reality where most of the women on the bus wanted to puke)

The second man I met today at an event for the foundation, which provides therapy, skills and socializing for handicapped children and adults, as well as help for the caretakers. At this event, one man stood out. He guided his son, who appeared to have cerebral palsy and some brain function issues, carefully to his chair, dancing with his son and making sure the boy had a lovely time. I found out that the boy’s mother and man’s wife died in a car accident a couple of years ago. This man has been caring for his son and clearly adores the boy.

I want to point out that while I have met one example of the first man, there have been many of the second type around me in Panama. Perhaps the tired old stereotype of the Latin American man needs a major overhaul to that of a view of a man who loves his family and children, works hard and yet still dances with them to ensure they live happy and full lives, no matter the child’s abilities.

So, come down to Boquete, Panama! Stay with us at Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast. Let us help you set up some time to visit the foundation, or other different volunteer groups here in Boquete. Spend some time seeing the different personalities of the Panamanian and especially the Boquetenians people! You won’t regret it a bit.

 

Anyone know where we can relax for the holidays. (Hint: Boquete, Panama)?

Blog by Terry Richmeier

No matter where you are in the world, the holidays can be stressful. From driving to shopping to family dinners. However, we here at Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast believe we can help take the stress out of yours.

Even here in Boquete, Panama, for those living here, stress is just around the corner. Here is our friend Joyce Kinnear’s ordeal that caused just a little bit of Holiday stress for her and her daughter Amy:

It’s been a crazy week, and I’ve definitely been stretching myself, my cultural understandings and my knowledge of the community. It’s all good, but it’s been sometimes stressful and a lot tiring.

First of all, this week is the start of a month of holidays in Panama. We had the remembrance days around Halloween and the first couple of days of November. Today, Amy and I saw many, many people taking cut flowers up to the cemetery in remembrance of their passed loved ones.

Tomorrow is the independence from Colombia. It will be celebrated with parades, drum lines that go on all day (it seems), the entire town decked out in the red, white and blue Panamanian Flag, and, of course, a 4-1/2 day weekend that starts this afternoon.

After this holiday, there is Flag Day and the Independence Day celebration from Spain near the end of the month. I’ve been told that the parade for the second Independence Day can last all day, with every school in the area marching and drumming.

In the middle of all of these weeks with multi-day holidays, we are trying to get Amy her Friendly Nation’s Visa. We’ve had lots of appointments to get her to at the lawyer, bank and a doctor/lab (for health status check-ups). Even more stressful was that we had to have a document notarized in an old part of David that we’ve never been to before. The notary had no address (typical) and isn’t near any landmark we know. Maps aren’t really helpful in David, especially if Waze has no addresses to go off of, so it was a nightmare for me, the navigator, to direct our driver, Scott, as we attempted to find the location without dying in a car accident. We survived, but the stress was something.

Scott has since come down with a chest cold, so he’s out of commission for most things. Yesterday, Amy and I went on what was supposed to be a minor errand to pay for an overnight. I left the car at the car wash, where it was supposed to be done 15 minutes (before I got back). We ended up spending 30 minutes at the restaurant, because the brand new manager of this restaurant didn’t quite know how to do the reservations for the second restaurant/hotel. We got back to the car wash, and, of course, our wash had been abandoned mid-job, so that the cleaner could wash other cars. He left the doors all open, and the radio going the whole time. By the time we did get the car back—45 minutes after this, you guessed it, the battery was completely dead.

Fortunately, the young man was helpful in flagging down a woman and her car to charge our battery (as well as a truck driver to do the actual charging). The woman told me (this is all in Spanish, which was making my head hurt), that the battery was two years past its expected life—etched on the top of the battery. She suggested one store to get a new battery and strongly recommended that I get a new one before everything closed down for days. I drove up to that store. They said they had batteries, but none for Toyotas and suggested that I drive to David (45 minutes each way) to find another one. We drove into town, to a store I remembered. They were very nice, but also didn’t have any Toyota batteries.

Someone we know from our hiking group was driving past and needed to give me something. He suggested two other places. Thank goodness the second one had a battery we needed, was willing to replace the battery (for free), and was unbelievably nice. Honestly, I was so wired by this time that his kindness and that of the woman at the register nearly made me cry. She and I had a lovely conversation (all in Spanish again) while the battery was replaced.

I got home so worn out and stressed that I went to sleep on the couch and slept for about the next 12 hours. Today we took Scott to the doctor, and hopefully he’ll be participating in society again soon.

You definitely don’t need to spend your holidays in stress. It’s always good to get away from your regular surroundings. Come down to Boquete, Panama. Stay with us here at Casa de Montaña, set up a massage. Have a manicure. Let us place a free glass of wine or a can of beer in your hand, and relax, read a book, and do the holiday’s the right way – do them your way.

Neighborhood feel of Boquete, Panama: Just like the bygone days of the U.S.!

Blog by Terry Richmeier

On any given morning here at Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast, you will open your eyes to the smell of morning coffee and your prepared breakfast. This is our normal morning, but, what about the community?

 

 

 

Walking past the bed and breakfast will be dog walkers, children heading to the bus station, the elderly couple walking down the street and stopping to smell the flowers or pet the dogs. You will see a special lady who will go around picking up the trash in front of every house and place it in a trash bag. You will see men stopping to talk to each other, never seeming to be in a hurry. And that’s just a start.

People in Boquete, Panama, live outside. We even have an outside space designed for every room. We also serve breakfast outside on the back terrace. This is very different than the communities that lock themselves up tightly and live their lives behind walls and locked doors.

Below is a testimonial from a newly transplanted couple Joyce & Scott Kinnear:

We have had some lovely sunny afternoons this week. A couple of days it didn’t rain at all (or not enough to hardly matter) and the other days, it waited until night to rain.

It is interesting the difference between our neighborhood in California and here in our neighborhood in Panama in the afternoon.

In California, when I would be working from home or have the day off, there was lots of traffic going past our house—sometimes doing some pretty crazy stunts. Also, there were lots of people walking past the yard or waiting for the bus. Many of these people would pick our flowers or drop trash in our yard. We were constantly picking up cigarette butts, dog crap, old and nasty alcohol bottles and fast food containers. It was nasty. However, there were never any people out in the yards around us. I almost never saw our neighbors. The people next to us lived next to us for nearly 20 years. We maybe saw them outside the house 1 time a year or so—usually going to their car. Other neighbors we saw less often. The only people we usually saw were the seniors from the nearby senior facility. They would walk the neighborhood and stop to talk to me about how lovely the flowers were.

When we are here on a sunny afternoon, the neighborhood is literally buzzing with people. We do see some cars or people walking down the road, but what you hear is the noise of people living in their yards. There will be contractors in several houses near us. Other houses have gardeners out doing work. The woman across the street may come out to sweep her driveway. Other neighbors putter in their gardens or sit on the veranda to read, have a drink or look at their phones. Any of these people are more than happy to stop what they are doing to chat for a few minutes if you pass by.

Since children go to school early in the morning, they are often at home the majority of the afternoon.

As I weed the flower beds, I can hear the neighbors’ children behind us playing and laughing in their yard or the baby crying for attention.

There is just so much life in our neighborhood on a sunny afternoon. How can you not love this?

Is this the isolated experience of people just in Boquete, Panama? Or more of a small town experience? Who knows, but peace and tranquility can be yours while you are staying at Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast. Come and stay with us and experience living life in Boquete, Panama for a little while. Come and slow down. Oh, and if you think you want to know more about this lifestyle, check our Boquete Overview Tour and see for yourself the neighborhoods that are mentioned by Joyce…..

At Casa de Montaña in Boquete we are cooking up a storm!

Blog by Terry Richmeier

 

picture-1So why did we choose international style breakfasts for our guests here at the hotel? Well, it all started with a dream that we both shared of owning our own B&B business and our enjoyment of flavors from all over the world. We have been fortunate enough to get to travel from Canada to Colombia and many places in between. And during our travels, we enjoyed many different cuisines and international foods.  One might ask, how many different ways can you do breakfast? Isn’t breakfast just eggs and toast and some juice and coffee? Our answer to that is a resounding “NO”!

So we sat down (while still living in Minneapolis) one day several months before the opening of Casa de Montaña and began to dream about what we enjoyed the most in food. Thinking specifically about the breakfast flavors we would choose. picture-4The choices in the beginning were somewhat different then what is being served now. picture-2 picture-3This evolution may be because of the ability for us to get certain items here in Panama that we might need. Also, originally we were thinking of breakfasts that included meats. We ruled that out pretty quickly since more and more people are vegetarians or vegan these days. Also, even if someone eats meat, they would gladly skip having meat for breakfast. We decided to do an informal survey of our friends and family about meats versus having a vegetarian breakfast. The vegetarian breakfast won out by far! So, we went back to the drawing board and started again!

picture-5We were fortunate to have Manzar and his sisters take part in learning to cook from their mother! She was an amazing cook and this led us to our first international breakfast (from Pakistan) of Puri, Chana Masala and Kolonji Potatoes.  It is eaten more as a brunch in Pakistan and has been one of our most flavorful and complimented breakfasts! We usually serve it on Tuesdays.

During the time we were developing our breakfasts, Manzar’s oldest sister Rakshinda was visiting in Minneapolis and we decided to make and taste all of the recipes that we had developed. Of course we started with the Pakistani breakfast first and Manzar and his sister made the recipes look so easy. This was a week-long trial period in which we said yes to all of our choices. The joy and fun we had that week was amazing! Who knew this could turn out to be more of an act of love than a challenge!

We made all of the fabulous and vegetarian breakfast that are listed on our website. Starting with Sunday here are the following picture-6breakfasts: Panamanian, Italian, Pakistani, Belgian, American Western, Mexican, and French!

You can take a look at the reviews of our breakfasts on our TripAdvisor page.  as well many reviews telling you about other services we provide and the amenities we have at our Bed & Breakfast.

We started with diverse breakfast choices but why stop there? Here in Boquete, Panama, even the hotels and restaurants do not have many international dining choices for lunches and dinners. So, we wanted to share what Manzar, his mother, sisters and sister-in-law all know in cooking up and preparing Pakistani/Indian cuisine. picture-7We started to share this skill with many of the Boquete residents and guests of Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast. We had our first Pakistani/Indian cooking class almost three years ago and it went very well with a full class of incredibly talented people! That was the start of many different classes to come. We are now in the process of repeating some of these incredible cooking classes so that others can learn and enjoy amazing international dinners. By the way, neither David nor Boquete has a single Pakistani or Indian restaurant! You can see photos, menus, and the recipes of these classes on our website.

There is more to come. We have had guests ask if we can schedule a cooking class while they are staying with us. We gladly accommodate if we have enough advance notice. Our next class is this coming Wednesday, January 11th and we are planning to have cooking picture-8 classes in the coming months as well. Who knows, we may do some Thai and Mexican cooking classes next? The possibilities are endless when it comes to what we can come up with. Here in Boquete we are only limited by our own imagination.

When you come and stay at Casa de Montaña ,  talk with Manzar about the secrets that make the International cultural food taste the best. Talk to him about how to cut and fry up the  onions (for example) when cooking Pakistani food or what order to add the ingredients picture-9to make the amazing flavors of the spices blend to create the greatest tasting food! He is full of secrets passed along to him from his mother. And who knows, maybe you too can request cooking class be set up during your stay here at Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast!

And if cooking is not for you, then come and enjoy our breakfasts while you are relaxing and resting. After breakfast, we can set up an in- room massage or a tour or two. Take a look at our current specials. See you soon!

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Saying Goodbye to guests and staff at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast, Boquete

Blog by Terry Richmeier

1Over the past three years we here at Casa de Montaña have had the pleasure of getting to know our guests and each one of you have made such an impact on us.

We opened with the very first guests. A couple that was from Holland and the wife had just finished her degree to become a doctor. They needed a break and choose Casa de Montaña as that place of respite. Along with them, we had a lovely couple that has a home here in Boquete, Panama, already. The husband wanted his wife to see the bathroom and open shower concept that we introduced to Boquete. She was quite pleased and they took several photos of the shower concept to share the idea to their contractor. We genuinely smiled incredibly proud that we made an impact! This impact started from an open house that we had in order to introduce ourselves to the new community that we fell into and in love with.

From there we continued as we spent the time during our social hour talking with all of 2you, our guests, getting to know you, getting to know more about the world in which you live. The stories of places you visited and your experiences. We learned about Germany, Holland, and cities within them. We learned about Ukraine, Russia, Australia, Israel and South Africa! And the list will go on and on…..

We enjoyed hearing the stories of your adventures here in Boquete, Panama, as you learned about the many steps to getting a cup of coffee to your table. And as you went on the Canopy Tour and you zipped speeding down the track hanging far above the trees! And your whitewater rafting trip to the Costa Rican border! It’s as if we took the adventure along with you!

During this time we had the opportunity to grow. We grew in staff so that we had people here that could speak to you both in Spanish and English. We grew in popularity through TripAdvisor and booking.com.  It is so heartwarming to read what you experienced during your stay here with us. We still to this day go back and read them. Remembering you and your time spent with us. And most importantly, we felt a kinship with each and every one of you, our guests, our hearts were and are still filled with love and happiness! Our lives will never be the same.  The energy, blessings and gratitude we receive do not end!

3What does end is the time you, our guests are here with us. Just before you leave, many times we stop and ask to take a picture with you. Our hearts step up to our throats making it difficult to speak. We act like nothing is wrong and we smile for the shot. Still inside, we are struggling to let you go. You have taken us by storm and we are left with that photo and a small piece of your lives.

As Terry has said, “I can imagine that most parents experience this feeling as their children, now adults, go off to college, or get married and move onto their adult lives.” It is difficult for us to say goodbye, however, you have shaped our lives so tremendously and you have energized us so incredibly, that we are renewed and ready to receive new guests and open our hearts to them and all who stay here at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast!

Along with our guests, we have had several employees that have moved on in their lives as well. We also have to say goodbye to them. Sometimes it feels like we are attending a funeral and for days, the remaining staff and all of us are affected.

Just real recently we said goodbye to Debra. Debra decided, after having experienced Casa de Montaña, that she was ready to open a bed and breakfast with her boyfriend in Quito, Ecuador. It about broke our hearts into pieces. Veronica created an exquisite thanksgiving dinner and we all sat together and quietly said how much we loved Debra, some of us could not verbalize it. It was a rather quiet meal until we found humor and all of us, laughed almost too loudly as it was forced.

This is not an isolated incident. It happens every time. And now, it’s happening again. Our wonderful Maria Isabel has decided that at this point in her life, she wants to be with her children. It’s always tough to work when you’re a mother with children and Maria Isabel has an opportunity to be a stay home mom! We can’t fault her for that and what a blessing for her and her children. Maria has this to say shortly before parting from Casa de Montaña:

4I have worked at Casa de Montaña for only 8 months, and I have made great friends. From Veronica whom with her motherly care takes care of all of us, along with Nicolas who is always on top of all the little details on the house maintenance. Natalia who is so detailed on the cleaning and can swiftly clean a room, and Junior who takes great care of our garden. Terry and Manzar have always been so fun to work with.  It’s sad to leave, and it feels like I am leaving my family, not just coworkers. I am sure I will be coming back to visit and bring cupcakes! (Otherwise Terry would not let me in hahaha).

 

So if you see a tear or two running down our eyes, we are ok, we just had to remove our heart from our throats one more time.

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For those who have not been here yet, or who have not stayed with us yet, please do contact us as we have a place in our hearts that only you can fill!

Boquete Video Festival Sponsored by Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast

Blog by Veronica Pitti

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There is an exciting new festival coming to Boquete very soon! This festival is called Boquete Video Festival (BVF). The festival has been developed by some of the expats who are currently living in Boquete. Dozens of people have registered to submit their short videos to the organizers of the festival who will then post the video on You-tube for people to watch and “Like”. The cost for registration is only $10 and that includes free classes to learn how to use your cell phone to make and edit the video before submitting it to be judged.  There are five judges who have been carefully selected. These are people who have expertise in films and video production. The judges are current residents of Boquete. All the videos have to show a story about Boquete in one of six different categories. The six categories are: Documentary, Comedy, Commercial/Promotional, Drama, Adventure and Musical. The festival is a good way to show people around the world the natural beauty of the Boquete area and the people who live here.

Right now several professionals are involved in helping the contestants in making of their videos. Some of the contestants have experience in making videos and others do not. It is hoped that people are able to make a good video once they have some training and personalized help. The goal is to have fun, be creative, get recognition, and hopefully win prizes!  The contestants have until December 31st, 2016, to submit their video entries. All the videos are being uploaded to the You-tube website of Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast.

There are Boquete Video Festival t-shirts for sale at the Tuesday Market (BCP Teatro) 2every Tuesday from 9 AM to 11:30 AM or they can purchased from Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast between the hours of 8 AM and 5 PM daily.  These t-shirts come in many sizes and are all blue with the festival logo in the front and a design in the back. See the photo to the side: Our friend Gabrielle


The big “gala” award ceremony is scheduled for Saturday, January 28th, 2017, from 5 PM to 7 PM at the BCP Teatro. The tickets will be on sale soon at the Mailboxes Etc and at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast. This awards ceremony will truly be a “red carpet” event. Everyone will be dressed up in nice clothes and have their picture taken by professional cameramen as they settle down in their seats and take part in the ceremony. The top 20 videos will be shown at the event. There will be a total of 8 awards and prizes given to the contestants, one for each of the six categories and then two additional “special” awards. There will be “Oscar Awards” made out of chocolate, two-night stay at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast, restaurant gift certificates from Retrogusto and Seasons Restaurants.

Even though I am not submitting a video for judging, I plan on attending the award 3ceremony in January because some of my friends are entering their videos in the contest. Hope my classmates are able to attend the event as well!

Veronica Pitti

 

Getting on my last nerve – Finding some healing in Boquete, Panama!

Blog by Terry Richmeier

1It all started back in October of 2015! Although in reality it started a lot earlier, January 2015 to be more precise! I had a car accident and was hit in the back side of the van by a speeding, inattentive driver. I and my van flung across in a complete circle and it hit another car on the opposite side. This really jolted me. Thank God nobody was hurt, or so I thought at the time.

Although I was fine for nine months, suddenly in October I woke up and could not stand up straight. I had to hold onto the end table, then reach out to grab the dresser, then reach out to grab the walls and anything that I could hold onto in order to get to the bathroom. I thought I was going to need a wheelchair! This was just the first day of many months of falling down, having weakness in my legs and arms and hands. 2Every step was exhausting and I needed many naps throughout the day. Walking our guests upstairs to their room completely took all the energy I had! I finally got to the point that I just wanted to crawl into bed and not get up again. I gave up on Zumba class and I gave up on life as I slipped into a depression.

 

3I went to the doctor. I went to the Chiropractor. I went to the acupuncturist. I loaded up on different vitamins. I had massages often. I purchased a back rest. I took muscle relaxers. I took advice from absolutely everyone. I practiced yoga from Youtube. I did stretches daily. Nothing seemed to completely cure me. Yes, I had a pinched nerve for sure!

 

What is a pinched nerve? And why does this happen? This is what I learned from the Mayo Clinic http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pinched-nerve/basics/definition/con-20029601 A pinched nerve occurs when too much pressure is applied to a nerve by surrounding tissues, such as bones, cartilage, muscles or tendons. This pressure disrupts the nerve’s function, causing pain, tingling, numbness or weakness. 4

A pinched nerve can occur at several sites in your body. A herniated disk in your lower spine, for example, may put pressure on a nerve root, causing pain that radiates down the back of your leg. Likewise, a pinched nerve in your wrist can lead to pain and numbness in your hand and fingers (carpal tunnel syndrome).

With rest and other conservative treatments, most people recover from a pinched nerve within a few days or weeks. Sometimes, surgery is needed to relieve pain from a pinched nerve. Pinched nerve signs and symptoms include:

  • Numbness or decreased sensation in the area supplied by the nerve 5
  • Sharp, aching or burning pain, which may radiate outward
  • Tingling, “pins and needles” sensations (paresthesia)
  • Muscle weakness in the affected area
  • Frequent feeling that a foot or hand has “fallen asleep”

 

6The problems related to a pinched nerve may be worse when you’re sleeping.

A pinched nerve occurs when too much pressure (compression) is applied to a nerve by surrounding tissues.

 

 

In some cases, this tissue might be bone or cartilage, such as in the case of a herniated spinal disk that compresses a nerve root. In other cases, muscle or tendons may cause the condition.  7

In the case of carpal tunnel syndrome, a variety of tissues may be responsible for compression of the carpal tunnel’s median nerve, including swollen tendon sheaths within the tunnel, enlarged bone that narrows the tunnel, or a thickened and degenerated ligament.

A number of conditions may cause tissue to compress a nerve or nerves, including: 8

  • Injury
  • Poor posture
  • Rheumatoid or wrist arthritis
  • Stress from repetitive work
  • Hobbies or sports activities
  • Obesity

This pressure causes inflammation of the nerve and disrupts the nerve’s function. If a nerve is pinched for only a short time, there’s usually no permanent damage. Once the pressure is relieved, nerve function returns to normal. However, if the pressure continues, chronic pain and permanent nerve damage can occur.

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For me, I’m 95% better but still suffer from some weakness and my depression has lifted. I’m currently doing ARPWave/Therastim treatment. And this seems to be working for me. What is this you ask? The Therastim (also called “ARPwave”) uses conductive electrode pads to provide neuromuscular stimulation. It treats the neurological origin of soft tissue conditions, not just the physical symptoms.

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  • The Therastim features a state-of-the-art electrical mechanism designated as a class 2 medical device by the FDA. Treatment includes unique Therastim protocols and testing techniques.  Therastim has been proven to be an effective treatment for those who have been told they need surgery and for those who have already had surgery.
  • By increasing range of motion and decreasing pain, Therastim can be a highly effective way to prepare for physical therapy.
  • Therastim is used by many elite athletes and teams throughout the world.
  • Therastim dramatically reduces recovery time for ankle sprains and strained tendons or ligaments.
  • Every year, thousands of patients receive Therastim treatment, it has proven effective on all types of chronic pain including RSDS and FibromyalgiaWhat is amazing to me is that all of this is available right here in Boquete! Plus, this is not all that is available here in Boquete. Many more options such as Yoga, botanicals, energy healing and much more…  So whether or not you’re traveling to Boquete or looking to move here, give us a call and we can get you connected with any one or all of these service providers while you stay at Casa de Montaña for your recovery!

    Contact Us at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast

 

Do I need vaccinations before my trip to Panama?

Blog by Debra Harwood

 

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Travelers to Central America from North America, Europe and Australia/New Zealand generally have more questions about what kinds of vaccinations, if any, they need to have done prior to their journey to Panama and other countries in Central America. Travelers are looking for a peace-of-mind, especially if their journey takes them to some remote regions. The best thing to do is to contact your local “travel clinic” first. They will most probably have the latest information about any kind of virus outbreak warnings and recommendations from agencies like the CDC (for the travelers from the U.S.). Here is what we have found in our own research from talking to other people and doing our internet searches:

Routine vaccinesThese vaccines include measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine, and your yearly flu shot.  You should be up to date on these no matter even if you travel or not.

Most travelers should check into the following before travel:

 Hepatitis AThis vaccine is recommended because you can get hepatitis A through contaminated food or water in Panama, regardless of where you are eating or staying.

 TyphoidYou can get typhoid through contaminated food or water in Panama so this vaccine is recommended for most travelers, especially if you are staying with friends or relatives, visiting smaller cities or rural areas, or if you are an adventurous eater.

 

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Some travelers should check into the following:

 Hepatitis BYou can get hepatitis B through sexual contact, contaminated needles, and blood products, so this vaccine is recommended if you might have sex with a new partner, get a tattoo or piercing, or have any medical procedures while on your trip.

RabiesAlthough rabies can be found in bats and other mammals in Panama, it is not a major risk to most travelers. Rabies vaccine is recommended for only these groups:

  • Travelers involved in outdoor and other activities in remote areas that put them at risk for bat bites or other animal bites (such as adventure travel and caving).People who will be working with or around animals (such as wildlife – professionals and researchers).

Yellow FeverYellow fever is a risk in certain parts of Panama, so depending on what areas of Panama you plan on exploring you may need to have a yellow fever vaccine.  For example, remote areas of the Bocas del Toro, Darien Region or San Blas Islands.

MalariaWhen traveling in Panama, you should avoid mosquito bites to prevent malaria. You may need to take prescription medicine before, during, and after your trip to prevent malaria, depending on your travel plans, such as where you are going, when you are traveling, and if you are spending a lot of time outdoors or sleeping outside. Bringing some mosquito repellent with you is a good idea.

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Remember some vaccinations involve a series of shots over several months so spending time researching in advance is wise.  In addition, ask your doctor what vaccines and medicines you need based on where you are going, how long you are staying, what you will be doing in that country. Don’t let the fear of a little needle scare you, it only hurts for a second!!!

Most seasoned travelers know to pack a few meds such as Ibuprofen, Imodium, and Antihistamines along with bug repellant, sun block and band aids. It is always good to be prepared for your trip so you feel relaxed and ready for the journey!

So come explore Panama! We are a country of beautiful beaches, breathtaking cloud forests, dense jungles, a world class city and of course the Panama Canal which is one of the man-made wonders of the world!

Remember when in Boquete come stay with us at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast where we will treat you like familyJ

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Dreaming of opening a Bed & Breakfast / Inn in Boquete, Panama?

Blog by Terry Richmeier and Manzar Lari

Our Logo Re-Sized

Has this been a lifelong dream of yours? Do you want to reinvent yourself? Do you enjoy being around people? Are you open to taking some risks in your life? Do you like to travel and appreciate different cultures? Do you have some financial means to make your dream a reality? Well, it sounds like your time has come to take that leap and own an international B&B!

At Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast, we started out by spending a few years researching what it takes to start and open a bed and breakfast. During that time we were getting our business plan solidified and our finances in order. After all the preparations, building our home, learning the government requirements, jumping through hoops and finding the financial support, seminars on running a bed & breakfast and developing a marketing plan, we opened Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast on Friday, January 10th, 2014. We are truly blessed that our business has been well-received by our guests and the Boquete community alike. Our biggest challenge has been to learn all aspects of operating a business in a different culture than we had been used to. With all kinds of challenges we face we have to dig in and research and find the answers as well find support that will work best for us.

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Within the past several months, we have been approached by people who are looking into the possibility of opening their own bed and breakfast or even a restaurant or two.  We have chosen to share our experiences and knowledge with these folks. We have sat down with these folks for a chat. It generally starts with an informal conversation and answering any questions that they might have. We generally continue through emails back and forth. Questions from Marketing to Hours of Operation to the choice of builders and architect, all are fair game.

Recently we completed a three month training for a lady whom we equipped with all she needs to get her own bed and breakfast underway. She is a friend of ours who has had the dream for many years to be a bed and breakfast owner/operator. It was a good opportunity for us to sit down and write up all the processes. In addition, we created a checklist that contained each aspect of the business so that we didn’t miss training her on anything. The process worked out really well. She was eager to learn and took her role of a “trainee” very seriously! One minute she was helping out with the recipes in the kitchen, a bit later she was working in the office learning our business machines, and later in the evening she was hobnobbing with the guests at the upstairs bar for the Social Hour! This gave her some solid experience in seeing for herself what day-to-day life looks like at a bed and breakfast. It worked out for us too since we learned some things also as we looked at all aspects of our operations. We were able to update and fine-tune some processes that needed to be changed. We also appreciated the extra help we received from her as much as she appreciated learning new skills.

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So come and stay with us here at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast and ask us all the questions you want about opening a business or bed and breakfast in Panama or even in your own hometown. We will honestly tell you all we know, or at least our experiences and perspectives, and encourage you to follow your dreams, whatever they may be!

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