Adventures in Bamboo Lane


As you can probably judge, we get many people visiting and commenting on all our web sites, especially The Silver People Chronicle.  We get comments, for the most part, in support of what we are trying to do and others often join us in adding to the collective memory with their own experiences.

Recently we received an anecdote from Mr. John P. Riley with a wonderful twist to it that made me reminisce about similar experiences I had as a boy and the near trouncing I received from would-be street boxers in an empty lotted area of Marañon known for maleantes and street toughs.  The experiences left me equally wary of staying away from such places  and/or encounters just like J.P. Riley.  You can read about it here.

Mr. Riley’s story is precious, however, and brings us back to a much more innocent time in the history of our beloved “Gold Coast” City of Colon.  He has graciously consented for us to reprint his memory.  Enjoy!

“Dear Roberto,

From the moment I discovered THE SILVER PEOPLE CHRONICLE I bookmarked it because I know that I will be exploring it a great deal!

I was born in Silver City and I remember going with my mother to the open air market in Folks River on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

There was an aptly named area between Folks River and Silver City: Bamboo Lane.

One day while walking my dog I saw four men shooting dice.

I stood behind one of the gamblers, intrigued with the colorful language they emitted as they tossed the dice.

When I attempted to leave, the man grabbed me by my legs and barked: “Where do you think you are going?  Since you came behind me my luck changed for the better.  I will tell you when you may go!”

After what seemed like an eternity he finally said, “O-kay you can go now.”

Needless to say, that was the last time I ever went back that way again.

John P. Riley”

We thank Mr. Riley for his donation as well and hope that many more members of the Silver People Community copy his enthusiasm and example.

This story continues.

One response to “Adventures in Bamboo Lane

  1. I was stationed at Fort Davis, 549th mp company, circa 67/68.. During that time I was taken to Bamboo Lane by a Kuna Indian, from the San Blas Islands. When he told me about the poverty there and that the LaGuardia, and CID, would not go there, we decided to do something about it. Since I was a supply specialist, I had access to sources, both Army and Panamanians. We brought a stationwagon full of plywood nails saws.etc. When we pulled in there, a man with his leg on the bumper of a car, tapping a machete, looked at me and said: HEY GRINGO, THIS IS A ONE WAY STREET. The Kuna Indian explained why we were there. Attitudes changed and we left Pronto. I never went back there, but returned to Panama several tines. The Tarpon fishing on the Chagres river during April and May is superb. THEY ARE RUNNING UP THE RIVER RIGHT NOW.