Tag Archives: Calidonia

Calidonia and Christmas Bun

This little stand selling the precious Westindian style Bun was close to the entrance of "P" Street.

This little stand selling the precious Westindian style Bun was close to the entrance of “P” Street.

Raspadura or "dulce."  Nothing adds the distinctive flavor like Panamanian raspadura.

Raspadura or “dulce.” Nothing adds the distinctive flavor like Panamanian raspadura.

As we take a stroll down the busy streets of Calidonia here in downtown Panama City, I cannot help but remember how it was at one time in our country’s history when the Westindian presence more strongly flavored our National Character. Especially during Christmas, you can sense and appreciate the contribution our English and French speaking Antillean ancestors have left for us all to enjoy. Continue reading

A Somber Farewell

Image of the old De Lesseps Park before it was destroyed to build the National Assembly building. Image thanks to our friends at www.czbrats.com

Now nestled among the other passengers traveling on the Chiva that night, through the dimly lit night, my eyes focused through the window at the now quiet Cinco de Mayo Town Square which was usually crowded and busy. I turned to see the International Hotel, the old Lesseps Park that saw me grow up, the restaurants at the corner and all the marquees of the night clubs for the first time. Continue reading

The Reid Clan on Display

The National Institute of Panama would have another Westindian Panamanian, another son of the Silver People from Calidonia, to display in the upcoming November patriotic festivities. For the adolescent that all the neighbors referred to as Juni, this would be a special event in which to collect the due admiration I thought I deserved. Continue reading

Puppy Love

The legendary romantic duo in Mexican classic movies, Pedro Infante and Maria Felix.

The intrepid girl who appeared to take me out had surprised me if only because she had previously rejected me. Although she had been in love with me for quite some time, her aunt, whom I was helping at her restaurant business had been violently opposed to our “noviazgo.” Somehow her family had been alerted to our attraction for one another and had suddenly become cold toward me. Despite the rejection I acted quite cool and didn’t pursue the issue, turning my thoughts to better things and not thinking of going out with any girl. Continue reading

Preparing for Achievements

Instituto Nacional of Panama as I remember it. aerial view.

My war with Rico that night had drawn an enormous crowd.  All or a good part of the neighborhood in which we lived either ran over to see the spectacle or later heard about it from people who had. Rico, on the other hand, wound up with a nasty baseball-size knot on his head, and the whole fracas quickly became “the event” to remember.  I came out pretty unscathed. Continue reading

Another Unfortunate Street Fight

Here is the classic image of James Dean on
his motorcycle. I don’t think that even he would
approve of the coward on a motorcycle that
forever drove a wedge between two childhood
friends.

Although my graduation from primary school had been marked by a sense of tremulous hope and expectation, the beginning of the year 1951 became for me a time of entering into an even more desperate period of my life. As I said before, it was a time of passage into manhood for most of us boys growing up in Panama City and it was full of uncertainty. Continue reading