My new neighbors in La Playita were surprisingly up to date on all the happenings in the Canal Zone, as their fathers and grandparents had been. They would bring to the beach the up-to-the-minute news as to what was occurring amongst the Silver Roll employees. Anyone who would happen to visit La Playita would, at any given moment, be quickly informed as to what was current regarding the politics of the American Zone as well as that of Panama City’s and Colon’s.
This great image of a set of cayucas I borrowed from wikipedia.org. These happen to be from Senegal but they could have been made in Panama.
It seemed to me that that beach neighborhood had its own bohemian look. I had become sympathetic to the whole atmosphere of freedom that existed there. I had never heard too much bustle or noise such as disagreements or dissatisfaction. The only fighting among the residents was the impromptu boxing gym where any brave soul could spar with anyone his size and weight, and even participated in the fray taking on some of the bigger boys than myself. Continue reading
I could afford to lose all interest in those Abel Bravo girls because now my little Chinese doll was available to me everyday especially in the afternoons when I was through with classes. The day would come, however, that I would have a good excuse to learn how to swim. Since I had been making it a habit of frequenting La Playita alone, it was time, I reasoned that I learned to swim in order to take my Chinita to the beach with me. Continue reading
The insistent knocking had irritated me so that I decided to go see who it was who dared intrude upon my peace and quiet. I had no intention of dallying at the door with whomever was there and I thought hard before I put my hand on the lock to open the door. Instead, I looked through the cracks of the window and, lo and behold, there stood this beautiful Chinese girl who was just about ready to abandon her mission and walk off. Continue reading
Scene from La Playita today. It is sad how very few changes have ocurred in Colon as in Panama City in terms of recreational places for the people. All of our governments have been guilty of total neglect. Image thanks to almanaqueazul.com
The first girl to show up that day from our class was a Chinese-Panamanian girl named Lily. She had come with our youth group who’d met her at her house and marched all the way to the beach. The whole group of us finally met up with the other West Indian boys and girls in our class who were now arriving at La Playita. Continue reading
La Playita today but, 60 years ago there were fewer houses and more scenery. The water was great. Image thanks to almanaqueazul.com
Colon Province has always been known for its beautiful and alluring beaches which I still hadn’t had time to explore. Turns out the guys in the class planned a beach trip one day just a little bit before the start of rainy season. “Hey Riri, let’s go to the beach this afternoon after school,” said Tito Johnson, “Everyone in the classroom will be there.” “Sure,” I said, “but, let me see if I can get some bathing trunks.” “Don’t worry about that,” said Johnson, “I’ll loan you a pair if you can’t find anything appropriate.” I was thrilled at the invitation since the girls from our class appeared to be eager to go as well. Continue reading