Niko was delivered to us like a pizza. It was January 2021 and we were stuck at home in Panama under some of the world’s madest pandemic regulations. He was a “tinacaro” which translates as “bin face”; a street dog in Panamanian slang. He’s come a long way; from starving on the streets of Panama to bounding around the Irish countryside…Continue reading “Adopting Bin Face”
Winging my way round the London Marathon
2 weeks ago, I was one of the 48,200 runners taking part in the London Marathon. From a rainy start at Greenwich to a sun-splashed finish at Buckingham Palace, I smiled, grinned and laughed out loud my way right round the city – proved by the 149 pictures of me identified by creepy facial recognition technology! Here’s why 5 hours of pounding the streets in a tutu, wig and wings made me so very happy…Continue reading “Winging my way round the London Marathon”
Training for the Marathon
I’m a 40 something mum of 3 and I’m running the London Marathon tomorrow. It’s not my first rodeo, but the last one was 13 years ago – in that other life I had before kids. The race is the easy bit: the crowds, the atmosphere, being part of such a massive event just carries you along. The marathon is just a victory lap round London. The training is the hard part. 319 miles have led me to this point. Here’s how it went and why I did it.Continue reading “Training for the Marathon”
Bringing Niko home
When we adopted Niko, we knew we’d eventually be bringing him home from Panama to Ireland. It was always going to be a complicated and expensive process. But, in the end, we checked him with Air France like a bag of golf clubs. This is how we did it…Continue reading “Bringing Niko home”
Hiking the Camino de Cruces
Panama’s famous historical trail seemed was easy to read about, popping up on loads of sites and blogs but impossible to find out about actually doing. When my sister visited recently, it seemed like a great excuse to do it properly. There’s so little information online about how get to and from the trail, whether it is easy to follow etc., that we decided to hire a guide, who in the event, came with an assistant. They turned out to be worth every penny. Here’s how we did it…Continue reading “Hiking the Camino de Cruces”
Walking along the Paseo Del Mar, Costa Del Este
This is a pedestrian path perfect for walking, jogging and small kids on bikes. And, there’s a never-ending dog show of pedigree pooches, particularly in the early morning and afternoons. Weirdly, there’s a surprising amount of huskies – considering the climate! One side of the Paseo Del Mar, or the “malecón” as it is sometimes called (meaning breakwater or esplanade), is lined with high rise apartment buildings that have a great view of the ocean. The other side is thick mangroves through which you usually can’t see much. Here’s what we love about walking on the Paseo Del Mar.Continue reading “Walking along the Paseo Del Mar, Costa Del Este”
Hiking with kids from Altos de Campana
We drove up to Altos de Campana yesterday, aiming to do Sendero La Cruz with the kids. It was our first time here, and we ended up having a lovely walk, just not the one we had hoped to do! We will definitely go back, as there is loads of trails to explore from this point. Here’s what we found out.Continue reading “Hiking with kids from Altos de Campana”
Walking with kids in Panama
With three kids and a waggy dog to tire out, we’re always looking for a good walk here in Panama.. Here’s what we’ve found out so far. It is not always obvious! Often you can’t take the dog. Official online info is not always up to date, particularly with new Covid regulations. Currently, while any amount of people can cough and splutter all over each other in a bus or supermarket in the city, on a mountain trail, sometimes you need to reserve in advance. Possibly for social distancing. Maybe for rescuing? I’m not sure. But it’s disappointing to drive a long way with the kids to do a hike, all ready to go, to be told you have to register online three days in advance (this happened yesterday at Sendero La Cruz). We had a great walk anyway, just not the one we had planned!
Here’s where we have walked so far…Continue reading “Walking with kids in Panama”
Our Sparkling Sanctuary
When we moved to Panama in January 2020, we were lucky enough to rent a house that has a small pool in the backyard. We never imagined we would spend so much time in it. Between school shutdowns, lockdowns and quarantines, those few square metres of cool blue water have been the kids’ world, their playground, our Friday night bar and our sparkling sanctuary safe from the outside world. Until last week…Continue reading “Our Sparkling Sanctuary”
Blindly we build our burrows
Scraping around in the cold dark earth.
Our subterranean labyrinth reaches out,
Then, grasping nothing, collapses.
Something calls us to the surface.
We emerge confused into the light,
Bedazzled by birdsong and breezes,
The strength of the sun
Whose vast immensity
We have no capacity to comprehend.
We feel something, understand nothing.
We turn tails and scrabble back
To the industrious dark.
By Lizzie Sherwood-Smith