Today is our 3 year anniversary of moving to Pedasi, Panama, August 9th. Easy to remember, since it is also my sister Geri’s birthday – Feliz Cumpleaños mi hermana. We had visited Pedasí twice before, but now we moved here with most everything we had left after selling or giving away our home and most possessions in California. Facebook sent me a “memory” of what I wrote 3 years ago:
” Well here we are in Pedasi. This morning our driver Luis picked us up with all our luggage. Then he took us to get our driver’s license; I got mine, but we had forgot since Mikkel is over 70, he had to get a physical. So he will get his license later(he can drive for 90days on his CA license). Luis then drove us 90 miles to pick up our Honda CRV we had bought. Switched all our luggage; said goodbye to Luis, although he will see us later when our crate arrives (he is arranging for a truck to pick up & take to Pedasi); paid for the car & drove to our temporary home. The car runs well & although it is older & has a few little quirks, it is what we need for now, especially the 4-wheel drive. This is the wet season & it rains almost every day, sometimes very hard. We arrived at our new home at Totuga Lodge & greeted by the owners immediately, who are Canadians. Our apartment is very large, but simple (combo living area kitchen with refrigerator, stove, small appliances, dishes, table & chairs, small bathroom with “suicide shower”, front patio with table & chairs, & large bedroom with storage closet big enough to store what is in our crate when it arrives until we can move into our final home in Oct. We are very secluded looking out to a green lush field behind the main house & restaurant where we ate dinner tonight after unpacking & settling in. I will post pictures later. We went to the local market to buy a few things for breakfast & plan to drive back to Chitre tomorrow to get more supplies from a larger supermarket & the “Do-It Center” ( like a Home Depot). Pedasi has a hardware store & supermarket, but we though we would stock up with more selection in Chitre, which is about 45 min. away. Internet is not very strong in our apartment, so it means our MagicJack connection is not very good. But we will make do. We feel very blessed, but it will take a while for me to feel completely at home here instead of feeling like I am just visiting. I have no doubt that this is God’s will for us to be here.”
After reading this again, I realize that apartment really wasn’t very large at all. Actually, we called it “the cave” – one window, one door with a covered patio in front so it was very dim inside as was the lightbulb above each room; the bedroom was divided by a half wall between it and the front room; the wall air conditioner was very loud like a freight train and would often shut off when overheated; and you had to climb over the toilet to get to the shower. But it became our first home in Pedasí for 7 weeks, and we made do.
Next we moved across town to what we thought at that time to be “our final home” which we name “Casa Verde”. It was a simple 2-bedroom Panamanian furnished home, again with a suicide shower, quieter wall air conditioner in the bedroom, plus only a two-burner table top stove, toaster oven, washer but no dryer (hung up clothes), and a front patio and medium size back patio and yard looking out to a cow pasture and small pond (swamp) full of croaking frogs. It was home and we were happy. We adopted Bella and fenced in the back yard for her. Mikkel also built shelves in the 2nd bedroom for our office and storage. Our plan was to live there long-term, but the Panamanian owner who lived in Panama City changed her plans and 2 months later we were asked to vacate so her family or friends could move in.
So now we were looking for another home and it was Christmas time. But as we look back to that time, we know it was a blessing. Friends helped us find our present home which is about 3 blocks away from “Casa Verde”. It was more than we ever dreamed of – fully furnished, 3 bedroom, full kitchen, on-demand hot water for kitchen, shower, and washer, garage and deposito for extra storage, beautiful large garden with garden shed, wrap-around veranda/patio, etc., etc., etc. We made a long-term rental agreement with the Canadian owners & friends and here we are 3 years later. We spent our first Christmas here and every one since. If you have followed this blog from the beginning, you have seen many pictures of “Casa MCMoller”, but I have posted a few for those who are recent viewers, from when we first moved in.
Now it has been a full 3 years in 3 homes in “our third life” in Pedasí – 3 years of challenges and adventures; 3 years of life-changing experiences. 3 has always been my favorite number. But I look forward to more years in Pedasi and hopefully in my present home because it is “home sweet home” for now.