Tag Archives: National Institute of Panama

Better to Dwell in the Wilderness

“It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.” Proverbs 21:19

By my second year in the National Institute my situation at home had not improved any in so far as how I figured in the scheme of things.  I still felt the sting of rejection from all sides, home and school and now in the media, like the newspapers of the day.  Even the Black Christ had been excommunicated by the Bishop of Colon.  Continue reading

In Honor and Glory

I hoped to eventually learn to play violin at the National Conservatory.  Image thanks to our friends at http://www.encoremusiclessons.com/content/blog/about-violin

In the midst of my long awaited moment during our march in the School Marching Band, for the first time in my life I was thinking about us Westindians taking our rightful place in honor and glory for Panama, for the honor and glory of “my country” that I had so much insisted upon since I had any recall from infancy. 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

Fostering a Mythical Panamanian Character

The lyrics of the Instituto Nacional de Panamá by Ricardo Miró.


With the Rector’s threat of expulsion from the National Institute this was just another notch on my list to add to my hard time for that year.  The thought that I would not fit in remained with me constantly and my stay at the famous National Institute became a quiet hell instead of the joy I had originally hoped for. The rest of that year was spent in activities that didn’t enhance me in any way either culturally or academically. Continue reading

Second Year Student

This is the National Institute uniform as worn by students today; no different from my day except we weren't required to wear a tie and no insignia.

My second year of secondary school would be marked with new features and requirements at The National Institute.  That year we became the first co-educational public high school instituted in the country of Panama to require its students to wear the classic government school uniform- navy trousers and a white shirt.  None of the public primary school kids were required to wear a uniform yet. Continue reading

Secretly Hoping

The same passion for marching in the November 3rd parade shows on the faces of our youth today as in my time.

I can identify with these younger boys who yearn to join the older kids in the November 3rd parade.

Throughout this period I kept up with my mechanical dentistry trade secretly hoping that I could learn enough to open my own small business at home.  In this day and age, with so many people wanting to establish their own fairly lucrative home business, I can identify with their sentiments completely.  I yearned deeply for a chance at independence. Continue reading