Mikkel and I both signed up for Spanish classes today. We’ll be taking private lessons separately since Mikkel is a beginner and I know some Spanish; an hour, 3 times a week at first. Ingrid, the owner of Buena Vida Language School, is from South Dakota and opened this school here in Pedasi a few years ago. Her instructors are from here, so we will learn the “Panamanian” Spanish. We won’t be starting until October because the staff has September off. In Panama, it’s a law that all employees have one month off paid. Also, in November, employees get paid for a “13th” month (paid double). To my friends back in the states, how would you like being paid for 13 months a year and only work 11 minus the many paid holidays (there were 19 national holidays in 2013 not to count any local ones). Panamanians work to live, not live to work; and they love to party with loud music.
While talking with Ingrid, I asked if she could use a volunteer to teach English to the school children. I knew she had a free program for the local children, so being a retired school teacher with a TEFL certificate (Teaching English as a Foreign Language), I thought I would love to help. This would also be a way for me to get to know some of the children and their parents and learn the language. Ingrid was glad to hear this and invited me to help in the classes that met every Tues. & Thurs. afternoon. Before I moved, this was a desire of mine and God has opened another door, giving me the desires of my heart as He had promised and I had prayed about.
After we had met with Ingrid, we took a drive around town and out into the local countryside in the rain. We had previously seen a house for $200 rent on Craigslist in Los Ascientos, about 15 miles away from Pedasi, and were curious. We discovered the town was of moderate size, but smaller than Pedasi; and believe we may have even found the house for rent. But decided it was too far out; Pedasi was far enough and offered more-enough for us anyway.
On our way back we pulled into a new housing development just outside of Pedasi. There was one house being built & for sale, and the front door was opened with a worker in the back. So we ventured on in to look. A good size 2-bedroom, 2-bath open floor plan home on a large lot. There were no counters or appliances in the kitchen yet, but it will probably have all the modern equipment with lots of electrical outlets. It was fun to just look around and perhaps dream. We are already thinking about possibly buying a home if we could creatively finance it, but for the time being, we are content to rent for the next year or so.
Back to our apartment to play a game of cards we bought at the local store. All of our games are packed in the crate which will be shipped some day. But that’s another story which I will tell about soon.
Sight of the day: While sitting outside the language school today, we spotted a parrot sitting on the nearby fence, apparently not odd here, but it would be in California where I lived. There parrots are usually in cages indoors.