The only thing clear about your plan up to this moment is that you want to have a good time with no strings attached. Its your vacation, the trip of a lifetime, the adventure after military service, or perhaps either your first or last stop in central America.
All kinds of questions pop into your head… you need someone to give you a little push, you look around and there they are, sitting behind the reception desk. They like to travel just like you, they welcomed you in, and now they are going to help you resolve any pending details about your stay in Panama. The Luna’s Castle Receptionist, a walking book.
Even in a castle the receptionists try to have a response to any possible question you might have. Here in panama the answers generally have to be reinvented on a daily basis. No other city in Central America changes constantly like ours does, at least not at the same rate as the last 10 years.
Even though the city continuously grows, as Panamanians, we maintain a few traditions; something remarkable for example is that our addresses are always based on points of reference: A building (which may or may not still exist), a store, a tree, or even a particular incident that occurred in the location your trying to explain. Very few streets are marked with signs. Thus, don’t be surprised when the directions to our nearest supermarket also mention three other places before arriving at your destination (while completely excluding all building numbers and street names).
In addition, even though the climate has some consistancies in the city, it changes, and can even be a bit deceiving. For that reason, a weather related question is one of the most difficult for us to answer.
“I’m Going to San Blas. How will the weather be?”
Its been more than once that we look the weather up on the internet only to find something entirely different than reality.
“When does the bus leave for the airport?”
“Weeeellll… the city bus routes have no schedule but there should be one passing every 40 minutes or so.”
“What nightclub is good to go to on a Tuesday night?”
“Besides our very own Relic Bar? Well, you could walk along Calle Uruguay to see what you find”
Panamanian nightlife is just as unpredictable as the weather, with the exception being the days surrounding payday.
So while on occasion we won’t have all the answers to what seem like simple and reasonable questions. We will always be happy to help you decipher the secret codes of our city. And of course we will always give you that extra piece of advice (warning, map, note, etc.) that can complete your adventure.