Monday 4 February 2013
Highlights: Ride across the ocean, Boquete room next to a river stream.
An easy travel day as our tour group started our migration to the next stop. You can always spot the migratory group with their backpackers and strollers with their looks of “Why am I up so early?” and “What country am I in?” expressions.
Our boat trip back to the mainland was delayed somewhat with organisation not being a strong point of boat operators. Luckily we had our Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Lisa to talk like a local and get things fixed up.
It was the hottest morning of our stay in Bocas del Toro so standing under the tin roof I was very glad I opted for shorts despite the warning of a colder climate in our next mountain location.
The delay let me have am enjoyable conversation with Laura and exceptional young lady although this conversation mostly covered touring frustrations :). The boat ride was enjoyable and near the coast we got to see all these houses backing into the ocean.
Back on the mainland and our CEO organised an upgrade to a private van which was patiently awaiting for us. We had left Bocas del Toro around 8 am and by 1.20 pm we were in Boquete. In between we got to see the massive mountain range of Panama and some very deep drop off points, luckily we had a good driver so no crashes. Boquete is colder than most of Panama but I don’t find 23 to be cold despite Lisa’s assurances that it is 🙂
Our hotel is right next to a fast running river which I found very calming to listen to. I found a local bakery for lunch which I shared with Ivan, Bo, Esther and Dottie – the egg and ham sandwich was massive and the piña (pineapple) smoothie hit the spot. At 3 pm we all visited a tour operator and booked our activities for tomorrow, hiking to a waterfall in the morning and visiting a hot spring in the afternoon for me.
Lisa gave my a brief outline of my likely new schedule when I leave the group early at the next stop so I can get to Panama City in time for a visit to the Panama Canal before leaving.
Dinner was enjoyable listening to everyone’s drinking stories, it looks like getting drunk and doing silly things is very universal. My Munich 2006 pub crawl story got a rare airing but I’m an amateur compared to most in the group.