In the outdoor break room today at Spanish school we chatted with a young lady (we'll call her Penelope) we had not seen there before. Originally from London, England she was now living in Haiti as a relief worker. Her work week there is long, from 7am to 11pm for six days a week and sometimes a half day on Sunday too. She was in Panama alone for 10 days on vacation and decided to learn some Spanish while here. Penelope speaks fluent French since that's what's spoken in Haiti and also speaks Italian from having spent time in Italy. From what she explained, once you learn one language it's easier to learn another. And since Spanish is much like Italian, so she told us, she was picking it up easy.
I was in awe that such a young woman at the age of 26 has traveled the world and found a job where she can do something to help mankind. She went on to say that she never missed her home in England and has no desire to live there again. With her job she makes frequent trips to New York, NY where she can reunite with old American friends since she also lived in the United States for a while. Penelope says that she considers herself to be a nomad since she really has no place to call home except where she's currently living.
I went back to class thinking what a great opportunity moving to Panama has been for us already, and it's only been a little over a month. We've had the opportunity to live abroad and meet people from all over the world. So many people are afraid to leave the comfort of their home state or community and never get out to experience life anywhere else. We all get so attached to things and familar surrondings and start to think that there's nothing else out there worth exploring. It's a huge world that we live in and there's so much to see and do outside of our comfort zone.
For Clyde and I, our move to Panama forced us to leave behind our stuff and familar surrondings and be willing to start over. Everything is different here but that's doesn't mean it's wrong......just different. And as we learn those differences we grow to accept new things, new friends, and new circumstances that can enrich our lives and expand our minds.
For example, I have been looking for contact lens solution in the pharmacies here. I wear gas permeable (rigid) contacts not the more common soft contacts. The only solution I found in the pharmacies was for soft contacts. I talked to one pharmacist and he suggested a few optical clinics where they sell glasses and contacts. Not a place I would ever think to look but sure enough, they had what I needed.
And I have a correction to make here regarding our electric bill. Clyde checked our online bill and it seemed to be $1.08 but the web site was down and apparently that was incorrect. He found our current electric bill for one month and it's a little over $17.00. Ok so Panama's not as cheap as we thought! Just kidding......our last bill in Texas before we left was around $240.00 but then it was over 100 degrees for the past few months that we lived there.
Penelope told us that since Spanish is so similar to Italian once we learn it we can travel to Italy and will be able to read and understand Italian. I have no idea if we'll ever travel that far but I've learned to never say never anymore. I have come to believe that my world has no borders or boundaries and know that there's so much more to see and do if I have the guts to try. Moving to Panama has been a gutsy move but it's opened the doors to limitless possibilities that we've not yet discovered.