I´m currently in Gamboa, Panama: 22 degrees from the equator, 1,500 miles from home, and 2 days away from intestinal health. I'll say more about the trip later, but the short version is that it's been fantastic. My travel companion is Brock, whose Latin American experience and Spanish-language skills far outstrip mine.
I've realized that, as an American, my mind can only fit two languages: English and 'foreign'. This pretty much means that I go up to Panamanian people and speak Danish to them until I realize what I'm doing and revert to appalling Spanglish. Yesterday's gem was 'necessito el sack-o'.
Most of the conversations with my traveling companion so far (other than " 'Sack-o?' You asshole.") have been arguments. We've so far reached 'agree to disagree'-ment on the following topics:
Is a hydroplane a boat?
If you made a T-shirt out of Spiderweb-silk, would it be bulletproof?
Is a helicopter with jet propulsion still a helicopter?
Who was the 1990s successor to Paul Simon? (OK, maybe it's not Beck, but it HELLA isn't Mark Fucking Cohn)
What does it mean for one country to 'annex' another?
Is prostitution immoral?
Can an engine be made with only one gear? Can it power a bus in, say, Panama?
Is it fair to stop being friends with someone because they sent you a Christmas card?
Tomorrow marks our tenth day here, and we're heading to a monkeyed, birded, and spidered island in the middle of the Panama Canal to more or less gape until sundown.
… And that Christmas card was totally smarmy. I stand by my decision.
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