Instagram feed

13 March 2010

Panama: I Get Saved Again!

5:25 PM. In the Panama City airport.

This woman turned out to be one of the most helpful and caring people I could ever hope to encounter!

I wanted to head back to the bus terminal at the Albrook Mall - so when I saw a guy yelling out "Termina" as the destination for his bus, it seemed right. I got on, and waited for about 5-10 minutes. Meanwhile, several vendors walked onto the bus and tries to sell children's books, fresh tamales (I was tempted), and pirated movies. [Seriously, who needs to go shopping when you can buy most of what you need right on the bus?!]. The bus left, and it headed into the city. Then it got on the main promenade along the waterfront - Avenida Balboa - a wide boulevard with all the major hotels and fancy apartment high-rises on it. It was amazing - like driving through Vegas or (as I'd imagine) Miami.

It was a different route than what I expected, and when the bus got on the highway (aka Corredor Sur), I knew that it definitely wasn't headed back to the bus terminal at the mall.

And so, I knew that I had gotten on the wrong bus. Was I going to miss my flight?

I wanted to make sure that I wasn't headed on a bus into the jungle or Colombia (though I wouldn't mind if I didn't have a plane to catch!), so I asked the woman sitting crammed in next to me. This woman, whose name is Alba, turned out to be one of the most helpful people I could ever hope to encounter! And she became another of my guardian angels in Panamá! She told me that the bus was going towards Tocumen (where the airport is). It turns out "Termina" means "termina del Corredor" or something. But the bus doesn't stop at the airport, I'd have to transfer to another. Alba got off the bus with me at the transfer point, and walked me over to make sure that I got on the right bus. She even asked someone to make sure that I got off at the right bus stop! Such kindness! I was also impressed yet again that I could have a whole conversation without using English (she did know that amigo = friend). I gave her a short thank-you note written on my extra Los Angeles postcard :).

She made me feel really good about humanity. No, great about humanity.

Anyway, I got to the airport and had some crappy food at the cafeteria just outside. It was hot and humid, and there were construction workers fixing the lights, so I had to switch tables.

Okay, gotta check on the status of my flight now...

No comments:

Post a Comment