Got up at 6:30 after a pretty good night's sleep.
Left a little after 7am.
Waited about 20 min for the big yellow school bus that says 'BOQUETE' instead of 'SCHOOL'. At least I got a seat: bus filled up after a couple more stops.
8:20 Arrived in David. Ten minute sweaty walk to my lawyer's office; picked up paperwork, paid the lawyer.
9:10 Back at other end of bus terminal; bought ticket for 10am bus to Panama City.
9:30 Bus began boarding.
Last time I went to P.C., I was on a nice double-decker bus. This time I got an old bus: not much leg room, no drink holder, yucky rest room; but the suspension was good, and the seats were well padded, though some of the recliners were broken. Ticket was $15, but only $10.60 with my senior discount, for an 8 hour ride. The first half, we had a good driver; second half, herky jerky driver. Stopped for lunch halfway: had steamed veggies, cold but at least not overcooked, and what looked like pork rib but was a disguised plaintain. With drink and senior discount $2.15.
Got into P.C. at predicted 6pm. Had to deal with heavy traffic before arriving at the bus depot: evening rush hour.
Need a Metro card to get around. Only had a $5 bill. Card is $2. Machine did not credit me the other $3: got some kind of note on the receipt that I need to contact somebody (will figure that out later). Got somebody to give me a $1 bill for four quarters; charged up the card (train rides $0.35, bus $0.25). Got on train; six minutes and three stops later, got off. Walked two blocks up and two blocks over, and into Hostel Casa 33 (more details tomorrow).
First order of business: take a shower. Modern showers: hot and cold water, no suicide showers. Even after hot water shower with cold water cool down and fresh clothes, I was still sweating. Sat in front of A/C, which they'd just turned on, for 30 min watching Animal Planet (in Spanish).
Time for dinner. Walked down the street, less than a block, to an outside food court (no nice, air conditioned restaurants close by). Picked one of the restaurants with a fan. Ordered a beer and a mixed seafood plate. Beer arrived promptly. Got cooled off nicely. Dinner was baby clams, mussels, baby squid, large and small shrimp, and calamari; it was done in a very good spice combo (good for me: covered up some of the seafood taste), available in hot or not ('not' for me). I enjoyed it, along with the cute waitress, and had a frozen (blue) margarita for 'dessert'. With generous tip, $25. Took my time at the restaurant, enjoying the view, returning to the hostel at 9pm. They don't turn on the A/C in the dorms ($13.20/night) until 10pm. Changed into shorts and t-shirt, went down to an air conditioned area, and sat on the couch reading my book until 10pm. Back to my bunk, a little computer work, reading until sleepy, then night-night.
food court - right
food court - left