Oh the wonders of the web. I found a backpackers/trekkers hotel in the old part of Panama City two days ago, the Hospedaje Casco Viejo, and the website was so together I decided to go for it. A single room $15 per night; bathroom down the hall. Turned out to be great. Clean, bare room, ceiling fan much nicer than air conditioning, breeze blowing through tall open windows, nice people here, good vibes.
I got into PC at noon, a $3 cab ride to the hotel, which we eventually found, rested a while and then set out once again in a strange city. Lord, is this place exotic. I’ve only explored a small part of it, but it’s richly textured in people and buildings and music. There’s an undercurrent of fear because of so many street robberies. I started shooting pictures as soon as I walked out the door. Later this afternoon, I started to walk down a narrow street off Avenida Central and a local guy said, no, don’t go down there; there are areas of the city that police don’t patrol, so, yes, there’s danger here, but like Phnom Penh, the city has a great heart beating along with layers of history and danger.