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Musings on a "Divided" Community

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I am again puzzled at the lack of advance information about events here in Boquete. I wake up this morning to read that President Varela was in town yesterday to review progress on the school renovation and the water works infrastructure, as well as to look at the site for a replacement Panamonte Bridge. Obviously this trip had to be planned and resources put in place for such a visit by the president. But how is it that someone (me) who is running a website to share information about life here in this area can be so ignorant of this kind of visit? This is not the first time such events have happened without advance word.

My only conclusion is that there remains a huge divide between the two predominate cultures that inhabit Boquete, referring to the Panamanians (which includes the indigenous) and the expatriates (predominantly from Western countries). I am not sure if it is a cultural divide or a communications divide, but divided we are, imo.

Where and what is the source of the advance information about the president's visit? Is it by radio, newspaper, bochinche, letter, telephone, email, or xyz? Are we just not connected to that (or those) information resource(s)? I would assume the language of the advance information is exclusively in Spanish, but my Spanglish is good enough to understand the big picture.

Going a bit further, we are hearing of a growing dislike for "foreigners" coming into or related to those who already live/work here in Panama. Venezuelans are high on the list of the "disliked", but our understanding is that the "disliked" also include the Americans, Canadians, and Europeans who come here and criticize the Panamanians. Note that I am NOT saying that all Panamanians dislike all foreigners, but the trend is increasing and going in the wrong direction.

Does anyone have a different explanation? Other thoughts on our cultural/communications divide?

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Most communications from the government seem to come after the fact in the form of photo-ops.

The President was in Chiriqui with a vigorous schedule for two days but looking back at his Twitter feed I don't see any advance notice posted. This press release was issued on Thursday, the day he arrived.


Some of the other projects the President inspected on this visit were the Hospital in Bugaba, the Kenny Serracin stadium in David, a new bridge over the Rio Esti near Gualaca, and the highway to Puerto Armuelles.

He was on the local Radio Chiriqui station Thursday evening.


Edited by Keith Woolford
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