Friday, August 30, 2013

Boquete, Panama

Following our stay at the La Jungla Rescue Center, we met up with the Hopp family in their beautiful rental home in Boquete. Scott and I met the Hopp's through my dad. We had learned that they would be visiting Panama, so we worked hard to make sure we could see them during their 1-week visit. We were also eager to meet their daughter, Nicole, their son, Chet, and his girlfriend, Erica. The latter two volunteer with the Peace Corps right here in Panama. Chet writes about his experiences here, and Erica writes about hers at the awesomely-titled, "This Erica Life". Aren't all Peace Corp people just really cool? We couldn't tear ourselves away from the comfortable climate, fantastic hilly road-biking, delicious coffee, and visiting with the Hopps, so another 5 days passed before we left Boquete.

Ron, Nicole, Yvonne, Chet, and Erica hanging out in the insane outdoor living space in Valle Escondido

Fireside in Valle Escondido

Our first night with the Hopp's, we went to George's Fireside Grill. It is a bit out of town and the setting was very rustic and casual. After we gorged ourselves, Scott, George, and Chet started in on a jam session with George's instruments. Chet was on a drum-set that was up in a loft. All of us had the impression that we might be in for a nightcap of a little jazz, blues, or maybe even some classic rock. Instead, George started in on his original pieces, which I can only describe as Egyptian/Canadian punk-rock protest songs.  Not really singing, just low-frequency yelling -- in French! It was a hilarious end to a great night.

A round of frozen mojitos at George's

The punk rock band with Chet overlooking from the loft

The day before we were going to leave, the owner of Boquete Outdoor Adventures stopped us on our bikes to ask where we had been riding. One thing led to another, and before we knew it, he had convinced us to join him on a whitewater kayaking trip the following day. The only reason we agreed was because he offered up his 2-person inflatable kayak, while the rest of the crew used rafts. It was hilarious and frustrating trying to work together to maneuver the kayak. Scott wanted to go through the biggest gnarliest rapids/holes/pour-overs and I wanted to find the calm line just outside of them - just like it used to be when we kayaked. Scott calls my style the window shopping approach.

Pictured below is what happened on the first rapid as we pulled off the shore. Luckily, we only swam one more time, as we started to get the hang of the orange beast. Also pictured is one of the moments where Scott was yelling WOOO HOOOO, while I was probably not yelling (or thinking) the same thing. The trip definitely made us (even me!) miss kayaking and renewed our desire to eventually get back into it.

Woohoo -- not window shopping

1 comment:

Deborah, George and Gypsy said...