Monday, October 26, 2009

 Hulkum, the friendly Golden Retriever

What I love the most about traveling is experiencing new cultures in traditions, food, entertainment, language. It’s all interesting and fun for me to learn. However, in doing so, I have found a stronger sense of patriotism in my home country as well as felt more holiday spirit in my own traditions when abroad. For example, I’ve never felt more Christmas spirit as I did when living in Israel and having the only Christmas tree on the block. People wished me “Happy Christmas” all the time. I think this may be due to forcing your tradition instead of it being forced on you by Wal-Mart, Hall-Mark, etc. Even to find simple decorations you have to hunt them down and travel across town to the ‘foreign market’ to find some of what you were looking for.

So this brings me to the latest holiday that is approaching, Halloween. Traditionally Halloween is not celebrated in Panama like it is in The States.

As if we didn’t have to worry enough about the Swine/Pig Flu… now there’s Dengue!

What is Dengue, you ask? Dengue, pronounced dĕng'gē, is a fever brought on from a virus transmitted from your average friendly Aedes Mosquito. Oddly enough it’s only transmitted from Human to Mosquito to Human and NOT from Human to Human. So feel free to make out with someone with Dengue just don’t share mosquitoes!

All jokes aside, apparently this is a serious concern even though I’ve never ever heard of it before now. According to, 50% of Panama’s population

Sunday, October 18, 2009

¿Cómo se dice...?


Living abroad brings the opportunity to learn another language. In college I studied Spanish (beginner I-IV). I picked it up fairly quickly. I would like to thank Sesame Street for that one. I traveled to Costa Rica and made my way about just find with the basics—greetings, ordering food, taking taxis, etc. But that was all in my Freshman and Sophomore years (1998-2000) and I haven’t exercised my Spanish since then.