Precios Económicos de Habitaciones de Hotel y Cómo Encontrarlos!

En este blog hablaremos sobre cómo encontrar o negociar precios de habitación de hotel económicos para su próximo viaje.

Cuando la mayoría de las personas hacen un viaje de vacaciones o negocios, necesitan realizar una reserva en un hotel para quedarse mientras están fuera. La forma más fácil de hacerlo es encontrar un OTA (Agente de viajes en línea) como Booking.com, Expedia.com o uno de los muchos OTA para reservar una habitación.

Algunas personas llegan incluso a buscar hoteles, bed & breakfast o algún otro tipo de alojamiento en un sitio como Tripadvisor.com antes de realizar la reserva para ver imágenes reales de las habitaciones, instalaciones ya sean piscinas u otras, servicios ofrecidos y demás antes de tomar una decisión sobre dónde alojarse. Es muy prudente hacer todo esto, pero antes de presionar el botón de reserva para arrendar su habitación, hay una manera menos costosa de viajar.

Por favor, permítame unos minutos para explicar la mejor manera de ir!

Cuando los hoteles están enlistados en las OTA, el propietario del hotel tiene un costo por hacer esto y el costo del negocio del propietario del hotel es bastante alto. Verá, Booking.com cobra una comisión al propietario del hotel del 18% del total de la venta por el derecho a incluir su propiedad en el sitio de reservas. Del mismo modo, Expedia.com, Hotels.com y otras OTA cobran más del 15% del total de la venta al propietario del hotel por el derecho de enumerar la propiedad del hotel para los vacacionistas y otros para reservar habitaciones en sus sitios. Números bastante asombrosos, sí lo digo yo mismo, y debido a esto, los dueños del hotel deben subir sus precios para obtener una ganancia.

Teniendo en mente esta valiosa información, ahora le diré cómo puede ahorrar en su próximo viaje. En primer lugar, use Tripadvisor.com para investigar dónde le gustaría quedarse. Cuando haya tomado una decisión sobre la ubicación de sus sueños, escríbala en el motor de búsqueda Google.com y busque el sitio web de su alojamiento deseado, o incluso simplemente su número de teléfono de contacto y llámelos directamente (no reserve a través de su sitio web como usted usualmente haría, tendrá que hablar con alguien del alojamiento directamente para obtener un mejor precio).

Al reservar directamente en el alojamiento deseado, sabiendo cuánto tendrían que pagar a las OTA por comisión, encontrará que puede negociar un buen ahorro de 10% o menos para usted,  menos de lo que pagaría en el sitio de OTA. Incluso puede descubrir que el hotel que está mirando tiene una promoción o un especial mensual que le ahorrará aún más, pero nunca lo habría descubierto si hubiese reservado en una OTA. ¡Esto también le dará al propietario del hotel un ahorro del 5-8%! Estarás contento con los ahorros y el propietario del hotel también estará contento de no tener que pagar las comisiones. ¡Esto es un “gane y gane” para ambos lados! ¡Se dará cuenta que el descuento puede ser un ahorro suficiente para pagar una comida en la ciudad para usted y su familia mientras está de viaje!

En Casa de Montana Bed & Breakfast siempre tenemos especiales y recompensamos a nuestros huéspedes por reservar directamente con nosotros. Visite nuestro sitio web en www.casademontana.com o llámenos directamente entre las 8 am y las 8 pm todos los días al (+507) 730-9427 (Panamá) o 952-931-9770 en los EE. UU. para ver cuánto puede ahorrar con nosotros en su próxima visita a Boquete, Panamá.

Sé que le costará un poco de trabajo reservar su próxima habitación de esta manera, pero creo que el ahorro que obtendrán les provocará sonrisas a usted y a los demás, ¡incluso antes de comenzar su viaje!

“Pruébalo… te gustará!”

 

Ed Crupar- Co-propietario de Casa de Montana Bed & Breakfast 

Traducido por: Generoso Guerra.

 

 

 

Affordable Hotel Room Prices and How to Find Them!

In this blog we will talk about how to find or negotiate affordable hotel room prices for your next trip.

When most people take a trip for vacation or business they need to arrange for a hotel to stay in while they are out and about. The easy way to do this is to find an OTA (Online Travel Agent) such as Booking.com or Expedia.com or one of many other OTAs to reserve a room.

Some people even go as far as research hotels, bed & breakfasts, etc. on a site like Tripadvisor.com prior to booking to see actual pictures of rooms, facilities like pools, amenities offered and the like, before making their decision on where to stay. All this is very wise to do, but before you press the reservation button to purchase your room, there is a less expensive way to travel.

Please allow me a few minutes to explain the better way to go!

When hotels list on the OTAs there is a cost to the hotel owner for doing this and it is quite a sizeable cost of doing business for the hotel owner. You see, Booking.com charges a commission to the hotel owner of 18% of the total sale for the right to list their property on the Booking site. Likewise, Expedia.com, Hotels.com and other OTAs charge upwards of 15% of the total sale to the hotel owner for the right to list the hotel property for vacationers and others to book rooms from on their sites. Pretty staggering numbers, if I do say so myself, and because of this the hotel owners must pad their prices to realize a profit.

Keeping this costly info in mind I will now tell you how you can save on your next trip. First, please use Tripadvisor.com to do your research on where you would like to stay. When you have come to a decision on your dream location, type it into the Google.com search engine and find your location’s website, or even just their contact phone number and give them a call directly (do not book through their web site as you will need to talk to someone directly to get a better price).

Reserving directly with the location, and knowing how much they would have to pay to the OTAs for commission, you will find that you can negotiate a nice savings of 10% to you, or so, less than what you would pay at the OTA site. You may even find that the hotel that you are looking at is running a Special Monthly Promotion that will save you even more, but you would never have found this out if you booked on an OTA. This will also give the hotel owner a savings of 5-8%, too! You will be happy with the savings and the hotel owner will also be happy not to have to pay the commissions. This is a “Win-Win” for both sides! The discount that you will realize may even be enough of a savings to pay for a meal out on the town for you and your family while you are on your trip!

At Casa de Montana Bed & Breakfast we are always running Specials and rewarding our guests for directly booking with us. Please check out our Website at www.casademontana.com or call us directly between 8AM and 8PM daily at (507) 730-9427 (Panama) or 952-931-9770 in the US to see how much you can save with us on your next visit to Boquete, Panama.

I know that this will take a little work for you to book your next room this way but I feel that the savings will give you and the others with you smiles, even before you start your trip!

“Try it… you’ll like it!”

 

By: Ed Crupar – Co-Owner of Casa de Montaña

 

 

 

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.

 

Alguien sabe donde podríamos relajarnos en las vacaciones? (Mi sugerencia: Boquete, Panama)

Blog por Terry Richmeier.

Traducido por: Generoso Guerra.

No importa en que parte del mundo estés, las vacaciones pueden ser estresantes. Desde manejar, ir de compras hasta las cenas familiares. Sin embargo, aquí en Casa de Montaña Bed and Breakfast creemos poder quitarte el estrés de encima.

Inclusive aquí en Boquete, Panamá. Para quienes reciden aquí, el estrés está a la vuelta de la esquina. Aquí está nuestra amiga Joyce Kinnear’s con prueba rigurosa del estrés causado a ella y su hija Amy por las vacaciones o días feriados:

Ha sido una semana muy loca y definitivamente he tratado de adaptarme, mi entendimiento cultural y el conocimiento de la comunidad. Todo está bien pero a veces ha sido un poco estresante y agotador.

Primero que nada, esta semana empieza el mes de fiestas Patrías en Panamá. Tuvimos días de conmemoración alrededor de Halloween y los primeros días del mes de Noviembre. Hoy, Amy y Yo vimos a muchas, muchas personas con arreglos florales en camino al cementerio para honrar la memoría de aquellos seres queridos que han fallecido.

Mañana se celebra el día de la independencia Panamá de Colombia. Será celebrado con desfiles, bandas musicales que marchan a lo largo del día (eso parece), el pueblo entero cubierto por el rojo, blanco y azul de la bandera Panameña y desde luego un largo fin de semana de 4 días ½ que empieza esta tarde.

Luego de este día, se celebran el día de la bandera Panameña y la separación Panamá de España ya casi al finalizer el mes. Me han dicho que los desfiles de la segunda fecha de indepencia puede durar todo el día, con todas las escuelas del área y  escuelas visitantes marchando al compass de los tambores.

A mediados de estas semanas con varios días festivos, estuvímos tratando de obtener la Visa para Amy. Hemos tenido muchas citas con el abogado, el banco y laboratorios (para monitorear su salud). Aún más estresante fue cuando tuvímos que notariar un documento en la parte vieja de la ciudad de David en la cual nunca antes habíamos estado. La notaria no tenía dirección (típico) y no estaba cerca de nada que conocieramos. Los mapas no son realmente útiles en David, especialmente si Waze no tiene direcciones donde ir. Fue una pesadilla para mí dirigir nuestro conductor, Scott, mientras intentabamos encontrar la locación sin morir en un accidente automovilstico. Sobrevivímos, pero el estrés fue algo horrible.

Scott desde entonces ha caido con un resfriado, por lo que está fuera de la mayoría de las cosas. Ayer, Amy y Yo fuimos a lo que se suponía sería un recado menor; terminamos pagando una noche. Dejé el carro en un lavautos, donde se suponía lo harían en 15 minutos (antes de volver). Terminamos esperando 30 minutos en un restaurante porque el nuevo gerente de este restaurante no sabía como hacer reservaciones para el Segundo restaurant del hotel. Regresamos al lavauto y por supuesto nuestro lavado había sido abandonado a medias, solo para que el trabajador pudiera lavar otros carros. Él dejó todas las puertas abiertas y la radio prendida todo el tiempo.  Luego al momento en el que recibimos el carro — 45 minutos después de esto, como adivinaste; la batería estaba completamente muerta.

 Afortunadamente, un joven caballero fue muy útil al hacer señas a una mujer en su carro para cargar nuestra batería (así como a el conductor de un camión el cual realmente cargo nuestra batería). La mujer me dijo (todo este es en Español, lo cual hizo que me doliera la cabeza), que la batería se había pasado por 2 años su tiempo de vida— grabado en la parte superior de la batería. Ella sugirió una tienda en donde comprar una nueva batería y fuertemente me recomendo que obtuviera una nueva antes de que todo cerrará por días. Manejé hasta dicha tienda. Ellos dijeron que tenían baterías, pero ninguna era para Toyotas y me sugirió que manejara hasta David (45 minutos de ida y venida) para encontrar otra. Fuimos al pueblo, a una tienda la cual yo me acordaba. Fueron muy amables pero tampoco tenían baterías para Toyota.

Un conocido de nuestro grupo de excursión necesitaba darnos algo  y pasó cerca nuestro. Él nos sugirió otros 2 lugares. Gracias a Dios el segundo lugar tenía la batería que necesitabamos, estaban dispuestos a reemplazar la batería (gratis) y fue increiblemente amable. Honestamente, estaba tan exhausta a esa hora que su amabilidad y la de la chica en la caja que casi me hacen llorar. Ella y Yo tuvimos una Hermosa conversación (todo esto en Español nuevamente) mientras reemplazaban la batería.

Llegué a casa tan cansada y estresada que me acosté en el sofá y me dormí por las siguientes 12 horas. Hoy llevamos a Scott al doctor; ojalá pueda reincorporarse pronto a participar en la comunidad.

Definitivamente no tienes que pasar las vacaciones o días festivos bajo estrés. Siempre es bueno escaparse de la rutina diaria y sus alrededores. Ven a tierras altas Boquete, Panamá. Quédate  con nosotros aquí en Casa de Montaña, ordena un masaje en tu cuarto al igual que una manicura. Dejános poner una copa de vino o una cerveza en tu mano de cortesía y relájate, lee un libro y disfruta de las vacaciones de la manera correcta – Disfrútalas a Tú manera!.

 

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.

Shopping for what you need (and want?) in Panama!

Blog by Manzar Lari

Our guests at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast often ask us whether or not we can purchase everything here in Panama that we used to purchase in the U.S. One would think that it would be an easy question to answer but it isn’t for us. Our story is probably no different than most of the expats who move here. We have been in Panama for almost 4 years. We are used to a different way of living now. Unless it is something we absolutely need, we have learned to do without. We typically shop at the stores in David for household goods and some hard-to-find items. Sometimes we never find those items! We have a Mailboxes Etc account. We can generally buy something on Amazon.com and then have it sent to the Mailboxes Etc address in Miami and then they forward our package to the Boquete location of Mailboxes, Etc. It takes an extra week, but we do receive the package safe and sound at their downtown Boquete store. Oftentimes, we have friends pick up small things for us while they are on vacation in the U.S. We do the same for our friends when we are on vacation. I guess after living here for a while, either you learn to make do without certain products or you figure out a way to get them through other sources (for a higher price).

It is always interesting to see the settling-in process new residents of Boquete go through while they learn the rhythm and norms of their new culture and surroundings. The stories and experiences of our new Boquete residents Joyce and Scott continue:

So, I’m not a big shopper. Clothing stores are meant to be gone through fairly quickly, in my mind. I’m much faster than my daughter Amy and slower than my husband Scott. However, I am a bit crazy about garden and hardware stores. I find them very fascinating.

So, imagine the heaven of finding yourself in a country that does a lot of repair work. Lots of repairs are done for a variety of reasons—the weather is hard on things, people have less money to buy new things so repair the old, and some contractors are terrible and you have to fix things that were just built/installed. I’m sure there are more reasons, but all of this has resulted in hardware stores that sell absolutely everything you could ever imagine to repair anything you could have ever thought about.

Our closest hardware store is a large maze of aisles just filled with every screw, nail, and piece of plastic and little doo dad you could possibly imagine. Since the store is absolutely jam packed, all the way to the 20 foot ceilings, with stuff everywhere, new items can be placed absolutely anywhere you could imagine—and places you can’t.

For the hardware enthusiast, such as myself, this means that you can spend hours in the store, looking at each item and always find some new little gadget that will be useful for something or other. Oh man, it’s like a child let loose in a candy store for me.

Amy thinks I’m weird, of course….

The shopping adventures of Joyce and Scott continue from Boquete/David to Panama City:

Today we took a taxi to David for an early morning bus ride to Panama City. The taxi went well, but it was the most expensive part of our day. It wasn’t bad though. For a 30 mile drive to David, it was only $35. In David, we paid a little over $15 each for a 6-1/2 hour bus drive to Panama City and Albrook mall, which is right on the canal on the northern side of the City. It was a very smooth and easy drive for us. It didn’t seem as long as it might have, since as I’ve not been feeling well for several days, I slept most of the drive.

When we arrived in Panama City at the mall, we took a taxi to our hotel, which is on the old military base. It was such a short drive (only about three miles), that we decided to walk back to the mall after checking in.

The Albrook mall is the largest mall in Latin America, from what we have been told, and it is immense. I estimate that it is about a mile long and 2-3 stories. There are numerous large department stores, plus any number of other stores, including about every shoe store known to human kind. You could spend days in that mall.

We went into a three story HUGE department store that seems to emphasize inexpensive items. After our three months in the small town of Boquete with occasional trips to the mall in David, it was really a bit overwhelming to see so many items and so many people in one store! There were tons of things that looked interesting, but we were mostly able to restrain ourselves—fortunately for our pocketbooks!

So, apparently there are many more items of interest available in the malls of Panama City! Joyce has written above about Albrook Mall but there all sorts of other malls like Multiplaza Mall and Multi Centro Mall, for example. Many of the Boquete/David residents also make regular trips to Panama City for their shopping and dining needs. We do the same periodically. Plus it is great for a change of scenery as well. After the hustle and bustle of Panama City, it is always great to be back home in the cooler and quieter Boquete environment and familiar surroundings.

There is a new mall in David that is under construction and promises to be similar to the Albrook mall, only smaller. The main David bus terminal will be relocated from its current location to the new mall. From the looks of it, it is about halfway done. Maybe in a year or two we will be able to do most of our shopping there? Rumor has it that the best grocery chain (in our opinion!) in Panama, Riba Smith, will have a store there! We can’t wait. Look at the architect’s rendering of the David mall below:

Hope to see you down in Boquete soon. We have a lot more information available for you! Make sure you ask us about life in Panama when you come and stay with us at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast.

So, you want to buy, build, rent or restore a business in Boquete, Panama?

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We here at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast began to think about what it took to move to Boquete, Panama, construct a building for the business, create the business and make it number 1 on TripAdvisor in our region. Then we thought, let’s talk about it to others and tell them just what it takes.

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So, whether or not you are thinking about buying an existing restaurant or B&B or creating a brand new business of some kind, let us walk you through the joys and challenges of making money here in the paradise called Boquete!

Let’s start with the joys:

  • You are your own boss. You have independence from the corporate world.
  • You set and establish your work hours
  • You have much more flexibility
  • You get to meet new people from around the world
  • You can be more creative
  • Panama makes it easy to establish a business
  • We are here to answer your questions and make your dreams come true. (Contact us)
  • Your investment can go a long way
  • Boquete has the highest number of Ex-pats living here in all of Panama
  • There are tax breaks and tax exclusions depending on what you buy. (We can get you in contact with accountants) Contact us

Here are some things to consider:

  • Do your research about where you wish to relocate. You can check with International Living https://internationalliving.com/countries/panama/boquete/ and Best Places in the world to retire. https://bestplacesintheworldtoretire.com/questions-and-answers/1001-what-are-the-expats-like-in-boquete-panama , for example.
  • Once you narrow your search to Boquete (and we know you will!), take a look into the laws around residency.
  • Then you can begin to look into websites that carry the business, land and spaces for rent for the kind of business you are looking for. (You can also contact us  we may have some leads for you).
  • Next you should contact a lawyer to make sure s/he help you with the legal matters of setting up a new business or the transfer of an existing business. (We can also help with this as well contact us. .
  • Consider the culture and what it would mean for you to have a business in a Latin culture.
  • Are you going to have the challenge of needing a loan to equip you properly for your business? (Loans in Panama are difficult to get. Contact us for some possibilities of banks.).
  • Will you need employees to help you run your business? Panama has many requirements for you to employ Panamanians such as paying “Decimo”, “Payroll”, and “Social Security”. We can help with contacts to get you started in the correct direction. Contact us .
  • Take the time to talk with business owners both those that are selling and those that are not. Ask pointed questions.
  • Check out the reviews on the business that you are buying. (This could be a negotiation tool.)

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These are just a handful of things that you will need to do when you begin your journey to your business. We are here for you in any way we can be. Come down and stay with us. Call  us up to let us know that you are looking at buying a business and we can give you the best possible price during your stay. Take a Boquete Overview Tour or the Boquete Scenic Tour that we offer. You can read more about this by clicking on Specials). And ask us as many questions as you have. We can help you in your decision making by our contacts, and ex-pats that live here. You will not be alone in your journey to a fantastic new life! Call Manzar now, let him know what kind of a business you are looking for and even get more information on possible businesses that are available for sale!

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The 10 Must-Do activities while visiting Boquete, Panama!

Blog by Terry Richmeier & Manzar Lari

Ok, so, here at Casa de Montaña we have been talking a lot about taking some time out – a respite from life and a tranquil vacation from the daily stressors of life. It suddenly dawned on us that not everyone wants to sit around sipping wine while lounging in their room!
So if you are seeking some thrills as well as create life-long memories of a vacation full of adventure, we have the best options for you!

1) Boquete Overview Tour

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Let’s start with our very own Boquete Overview Tour! You inspired us to create this unique experience of Boquete – see the beautiful landscape, precious people, and to help you decide if Boquete could be a future home for you. This tour gives you an overview of Boquete from the comfort of the van while you enjoy a bottle of water and a snack. This is a half day tour and is full of information about Boquete and the surrounding areas. It’s our number one must do for a reason! Whether you are looking at a possible re-location or you just want to see the magnificent and amazing place we call home, this tour is designed just for you. There is a charge for this tour but check out our specials to look for discounts here .

2) Coffee Tours

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There are a couple of coffee tours that we highly recommend. The first one, “Café Ruiz” picks you up here at our hotel and takes you to the finca (farm) where they grow and pick coffee beans and do the initial processing of the coffee beans. Later on they take you to the plant where they roast and taste test. During this truly entertaining tour you learn a lot about the history and the current state of the coffee business in Panama. You also get to smell and taste different variety of coffee and you even end up bringing home your own bag of coffee! This is the perfect tour if you have never been on a coffee tour before. Just let us know and we can get this set up for you. And if you have been to a coffee tour before, Dos Jefes (Cafes de la Luna) is a great option for you. Remembering your knowledge on how the process works to put the great tasting coffee on your table, Dos Jefes details the process of winning the world’s best coffee awards. You will become the expert yourself as you pass through taste testing and talk about the living environment of the indigenous people that work the farms as well as why organic coffee is fast disappearing and much more. Unique to this tour is the chance to taste the new tea that is being produced from the Cherries of the coffee bean! This is a second tear/level of coffee tours. Note: We have information about a special and unique program where you can buy a portion of a coffee farm through “International Coffee Farms” (ICFC). If you are interested, you would be welcome to join their regularly scheduled conferences that is chock-a-block full of information about how you can be part of the Socially Responsible way of producing coffee by giving back to the community. Let us know if we can assist you in getting connected to ICFC or other coffee tours. Click here for more information.

3) Zip-Line

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For some real thrill and adventure we can get you scheduled for a Zip Line/Canopy Tour where you ride sky high from tree to tree looking onto the rivers, suspension bridges and the cloud forest below. This amazing adventure is not for the faint of heart! You may want to put this onto your bucket list! Contact us to schedule here.

4)Whitewater Rafting

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Another must do for the enthusiastic adventurists is to take scheduled whitewater rafting trip which is about 1.5 hours away at the Costa Rican border. This tour is particularly thrilling during the rainy season with the river rafting level going up to Level Four in the months of August-October!  The tour guides take in a van to the river, provide all the equipment and instructions and provide the adventure of a lifetime! They even break for lunch that is included in the fee. Click here to request more information.

5)Island Tour

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With tours that take you into the deep rivers with “White Water Rafting” (above) to zooming across the ocean in a water taxi on your way to a remote island, life couldn’t get better! Along the way to the Pacific island of Bolaños, you will get to experience whale and dolphin watching as well snorkeling when you arrive at the island.  And, when you are hungry, eating a lunch of sandwiches, fresh vegetables and fruit while you are sprawled out across the sand is definitely in order! Don’t forget to bring your swim gear! Click here for more information.

6)Cloud Forest Hikes

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Your thrilling adventure can continue upon your return to Boquete when you hike through the many more easy to difficult hiking trails (and everything in between) that Boquete has to offer! Start with “The Pipeline” trail, the easiest trail for those who want to see the animals, sloths, Quetzals (see bird watching) and Panama’s oldest and biggest tree as well as a beautiful waterfall at the end of the trail. Another great hike is “The Lost Waterfalls” hike, it consists of three different waterfalls. This is a moderately difficult hike. As you see nature at its finest don’t forget to jump into the middle waterfall, get wet and cool off! The “Il Pianista” hike and “Volcan Baru” are two of the most challenging hikes and we strongly recommend that you go with an experienced local guide to do these. There are so many more hikes that you can do. Our Manager Debra has done many of them herself. Contact us and she can give you more information.  Contact us here.

7)Caldera Hot Springs and Gualaca Mini Canyon (Cangilones)

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Don’t forget that we also have amazing Hot Springs and Canyons! You can sit in the Caldera Hot Springs as you relax in the hot water so natural and healing or you can dive into the water in the Gualaca Canyon. Really exhilarating! This tour is usually a combination all-day tour. Let us know and we can get either (or both) of these set up as well.

 

8)Horseback Riding

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You continue your nature adventures by taking a “Horseback Riding” tour throughout the mountains and canyons of Boquete! There is not a better way to experience all the senses with the sounds of the birds the touch of the horses and the sites of the amazing and ever changing landscape of Boquete, Panama. Click here to schedule.

9)Bird Watching

And speaking of the sounds of those birds, if you are a bird watching enthusiast you have HIT THE JACKPOT while visiting the province of Chiriqui! Panama is home to 978 species of birds. Grab a book on Panama birds, take a journey on the Los Quetzals or the Culebra trail (for example) and snap those pictures! We even have guides available to help you spot them. Contact us for setting up a guide for you.

 

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 10)Relaxation: Massage and Yoga

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Ok, now that you have done the top nine things, it is time to pamper and rejuvenate yourself! All the Must-do’s have been accomplished and you are feeling great about your bucket list! One of Terry’s most favorite and highly rated must-do is to have a Massage or take a morning yoga class. Both melt away the soreness and allow you to relax and re-align yourself. Contact us for more information and to schedule here.

 

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We at Casa de Montaña know that vacation time is so short, we want to help you make it your most amazing trip possible! We will do our best to assist you in setting up your “Must-Do’s” creating the perfect vacation for you. We are available by email: info@casademontana.com or by phone, Panama: 507-7309472 or U.S. 952-931-9770 or just contact us by clicking here  and get your “Bucket List” checked off!!!

 

Pack your suitcases with YARN and Love and head to Boquete, Panama!

Story of the Boquete Knitters and Quilters group

Blog by Terry Richmeier (and info from Brandy Gergory)

6Why yarn you ask? What in the world is Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast wanting with yarn, you say? Why should I take up room in my suitcase for yarn of all things?

Simply said, Casa de Montaña wants to support our local community in an amazing, warming, and giving way! Read on below:

Meet Brandy Gregory! When she moved here seven years ago, she wanted to meet people with a common interest: knitting. She put out a notice that essentially said, “I’ll lend you my b1needles, I’ll give you yarn, but you have to knit for the babies.” On January 23, 2009, six women showed up on the back patio of the Fundadores Hotel to talk, get to know each other, and to knit and crochet baby things: blankets; caps; sweaters and booties. About five years ago, they moved to the Fundacion pro Integracion (the Handicap Foundation) in Alto Boquete, where they meet every Friday afternoon from 1PM to 3PM. In the seven years since then, they have expanded their group to include some amazingly talented quilters. The group is called the “Boquete Knitters and Quilters”.

Brandy told Casa de Montaña “We give our finished items to the Centros de Salud in Palmira and in downtown Boquete. We supply the pediatric oncology department in David with our softest caps for the children and teens who lose their hair during chemotherapy. We also donate to other aid organizations on a case by case basis. Essentially, we donate wherever the need is discovered. We know that the staff at the various agencies are more familiar with their clients than we could ever hope to be.”

After thinking about this for a minute of two, I wondered why Brandy and her group would spend so much time on knitting. What did they seem to get back from working their fingers to the bone? Here is what Brandy had to say: “Creating community” is probably our greatest joy! Initially, all of us in the group were expats, 3but when we moved to the Handicap Foundation, some of the Latina Panamanian ladies were intrigued by our work (knitting is not common in the culture in Panama.) They asked to learn “como tejer con dos agujas” — “how to knit with two needles”. With the help of on-line resources — and a LOT of laughter — we taught them. The beginner project was a scarf in their choice of color, and was our gift to them. We then explained that they were more4 than welcome to stay in the group and knit for “our babies”. They stayed. They knitted. They knitted in public! And they were seen by Ngäbe-Buglé ladies who asked if we would let them learn how to knit. Of course we said “Sure!” So we have all three cultures: Expat, Latina Panamanian, and Ngäbe-Buglé Panamanian working side by side, friend next to friend, for a common cause. Brandy also advised us “Because we do not donate directly to individuals, we rarely see our completed work. It is high in the mountains of the Comarca, where it is needed and used. But that does not lessen our joy in our work.”

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So, my next thought was “What is the difference between knitting, sewing, crocheting, tatting, macramé? And what are the origins and purpose behind the history of knitting?     So, why not ask Brandy? Here is what she said. “There are whole books devoted to this subject! But, knitting is looping yarn with two or more needles to create a stretchy fabric; sewing is joining two or more pieces of cloth (usually woven) with thread; crochet is looping yarn with a small hook to create a stretchy fabric; tatting is looping thread in a special shuttle to make lacy looking trims that can be fastened together to make fabric; macramé is knotting anything from thread (like making some laces) to rope (to make plant holders or even hammocks).   The oldest known knitted piece dates possibly from the 11th century and is from Egypt. I’m guessing here, but because woven fabric has little “give”, knitting was developed to allow “ease”. In Elizabethan England, all knitting was done by men — and lace stockings were very popular.

7I had a few more questions that I thought I should ask before I have you bring some down in your suitcase for donating as mentioned above. So, again, I asked Brandy 1: “What can a donation of a tube of yarn create?” and 2: “How hard is it to learn to knit?” and 3:“Do you have to know how to knit to be in the group?” Here are Brandy’s answers:

“It is possible to find yarn in Panama, but the quality is poor and the price is quite high. When we moved down here, I actually used all of my yarn for packing material! When I went to the states for visits, I’d go to Joann Fabrics, Michael’s or Hobby Lobby and shop for the sale yarn, often filling an extra suitcase with goodies! Now the Boquete Knitters and Quilters host The Great Boquete Soup Fest — the next one is March 18 at the BCP — and raise “yarn/fabric money”. We order mass quantities of yarn, fabric and quilt batting on-line and have it shipped down. We also ask for donations from people visiting from North America and other parts of the world.”5

1:”We use acrylic yarns because it stands up better to being beaten on a rock in the river. We love Caron “Simply Soft”, Red Heart “Soft”, Lion Brand “Pound of Love” and “Homespun”! Two 4-ounce skeins of Caron “Simply Soft” or Red Heart “Soft” will produce a sweater. A Pound of Love will yield a couple of sweaters and possibly a cap. Three skeins of “Homespun” makes the softest, sweetest warm baby blanket you’ve ever seen! And we use the “bits and bots” of left over yarn to create striped caps or booties. We try to use every inch possible.” 2: I learned how. It can’t be that hard! Seriously, there are only two stitches to learn: knit and purl. Everything – EVERYTHING — is based on those two stitches! 3: Nope, you don’t need to already know how to knit! We can teach you since there are only two stitches to learn: “knit” and “purl”. We’ll get you started with your very own scarf — our gift. And if you decide knitting or crochet is not for you, that is not a problem. Your scarf is yours. Right now, the group is all women, but, as long as a guy does not mind being in the minority, we’ll welcome him!

So I asked one last question from Brandy and that is this: “What would you like to see happen in the future with the Knitters group? Your wildest dream come true?” and here is her response “I’d love to see our group grow. I’d especially love to have more Panamanians join us, learn a new skill, and get to know us and each other — “being knitted together in love”. My wildest dream come true would be for Joann Fabrics to open a store in David! Since I know that will never happen, I’d have to say that my wildest dream would be for the Boquete Knitters and Quilters to be able to raise about $7000 a year which we would spend on yarn, fabric and batting. We split our funds 50/50 between knitting/crochet supplies and quilting supplies.”

1012So, since hearing her desire, we here at Casa de Montaña Bed & Breakfast would love to help out and the thought that we had for our future guests is this … Just run up to the store, grab some yarn (on sale?) off the shelf and stick it in your suitcase! Bring it down here with you and we will make sure that your donation gets to Brandy and her group of Boquete Knitters and Quilters group! And if you have any questions of Brandy that you would like to ask, you can email her group at the following email address: BOQUETEKNITTERS@HOTMAIL.COM. Also, let us at Casa de Montaña know if you are interested in having a knitting class or a day with the group and we will try to arrange it for you. And THANK YOU Brandy and the group for warming the children and the hearts of Boquete as well!

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