An Iguana, Shopping in Panama and A Bus Ride to Remember

by Rose

The last couple of weeks have went by very quickly with my daughter visiting. She enjoyed her time here; from the beauty and tranquility at the farm nestled in the countryside of Panama to the excitement of going to the Farmers Market. We just hope next time her husband will be able to come down with her and of course Gabriel will be out and about as well. We are already looking forward to that visit!

An Iguana

On one of the first days here we spied this 3 foot iguana in the goat pasture. This is the largest iguana I have seen in Panama to date. He was very handsome and posed for this picture.

The iguana hopes and prays we do not believe the lie that everything tastes like chicken!

Shopping in Panama

My Mother, Molly and I left a day before Mollys flight back to Texas, for a trip to Panama City.  We went shopping at the Indian store and exploring the mall. We had a fun time together, acting goofy and laughing a lot!

My Mother bought her great grand son a Panama t-shirt! (Molly models it over her belly)

  Trying on dozens of pairs of sunglasses at a shopping center

My Mother was apparently missing my Father, as we found her with this large horned fellow

 Saying our good-byes at the airport

A Bus Ride to Remember

My Mother and I took the bus from Panama City to our home in Chiriqui. It is an 8 hour bus trip. The buses are fairly comfortable and they play movies during the trip. (Unfortunately the movies are in all Spanish, so we try to watch and figure out the plot in spite of the language barrier.)

The inside of the bus seats about 51 people

I have taken the long trip to Panama City and back to Chiriqui, over a half-dozen times now and have always been concerned with what my Mother had warned me about while taking that trip on the bus and that is you can only urinate in bus bathroom. On one bus my Mother told me there was a warning on the bathroom door, that stated there was a fine of $20.00 if you deposited anything, but urine in the toilet.  

Now 8 hours is a long time, especially during the day, when I imagine most people defecate… right??? So every time I take the bus from Panama City, I have am overcome with a little trepidation concerned with the resounding question in my mind“What if I had to go Number 2… What would I do….???”.

The bathroom door was right behind us this trip- The sign boldly states                                   “ONLY FOR URINE”

So on the way back home this week, I am sitting comfortably in my seat on the bus, watching the movie that is playing, as Mom is sleeping soundly away, when I smell a horrible smell. My god, I think, someone has horrible gas… Within a minute the smell seems to dissipate, when I get another waft of a sickening stench and I furrow my brows, thinking someone is not doing too well… Wowser. I look over at Mom; she is still asleep, softly snoring, looking quite peaceful. Two minutes later the smell has not gone away, but has gotten increasingly worse… and I think, this is not fair; she gets to sleep through this unpleasantness. 

So now I casually look around for the offender. I don’t see anyone to the front of me, who looks guilty, so I glance to the aisle beside me and back. I see a woman there with her shirt pulled up over her nose and she starts speaking rapidly to me in Spanish, waving her finger. I can tell she is in obvious distress over the aroma. I nod her way and wrinkle up my nose to let her know I am in distress with her. She is not alone.

About this time, the bus attendant, who stays at the front of the bus, walks to the back of the bus and the woman behind us starts talking very excitedly to him and waving her finger back and forth, obviously upset. With all of the commotion, my Mother is now awake and she wants to know what on earth smells so bad. I tell her-I don’t know, that I thought someone had bad gas at first, but now I am thinking that someone had a bowel movement in the toilet and we are just now smelling it. I am wondering who the guilty party was, as I was watching the movie and had not paid attention to who had walked by me and back.

The bus attendant is now speaking loudly and in an agitated voice. I turn around. He is attempting to pull open the bathroom door, but it keeps being closed back… I see a glimpse of a man in there, trying to keep the door closed. The guilty party has been found and is still at the scene of the crime!

The bus attendant is asking him “Que Pasa…?” (The bus attendant could not figure out what was happening in there…??? I think everyone in the back of the bus could have gave him a pretty accurate idea.) The bus attendant continues to question the man rapidly and continues to try to open the door… I turn back around- a little shocked.

 I find everyone sitting in the front of the bus, looking to the back of the bus… Some people have their shirts pulled up over their noses and others are fanning their faces. I am not kidding when I tell you it smells literally like the man had not taken a bowel movement for over two weeks. It is baaaaad smelling and apparently the mutant odor has spread throughout the entire bus.

Mom looking a little green around the gills and tries to protect her nasal passages and lungs behind the safety of her shirt

As my Mother and I discuss the situation at hand, we feel sorry for the man…. I mean when you gotta go, you gotta go, right…? Shit happens. Literally.

We find it a little unreal the bus attendant was yelling at the man and trying to pull the man out of the bathroom while he was still on the toilet… Suddenly the whole scene becomes a bit hilarious and terrifying all at once… We keep thinking what if it had been us on the toilet… Would the bus attendant have yelled at one of us? Would he have tried to pull us off the toilet..? We quickly try to think if in the future if there a way to avoid taking the bus… Do we need to pay more money and take the plane from now and avoid the possibility of such a vulnerable position? Or could the problem be solved if one were able to poo in a bag and just take to the front of the bus and tell the bus driver, you need to throw the bag off the bus…?

As we ponder dozens of scenarios of how to save face if you poo on the toilet and the craziness of what just happened, we cannot stop laughing and we laugh non-stop for a good 15 minutes.  I don’t think we came up with any definitive answers. Just take heed and be aware, if you ever come to visit us and take the bus from Panama City to get to the farm-Don’t say I didn’t warn you about the bathroom on the bus!

Have a good weekend my dear friends and family! You are loved and we think about each and every one of you more often than you know.

Peace to you all, Rose