Image is of the Mechanics Lodge posing for a group picture with their families. About 1912 at Isla Colon. Just as in Colon and Panama City the Lodges made up a very important part of the life of the West Indian Panamanian society. Image thanks to Sr. José Price.
These were the times of the Panamanian presidency of Ernesto de la Guardia, Jr., while we remained in Baseline, today known as the area of Changuinola in Bocas del Toro Province. However, today I would probably not recognize that same Changinola River area I got to know the first day I ventured up there to seek work back in 1956. But, it was an area that my co-workers and I would get to know as home and we shared many adventures together as plantation laborers just as my West Indian forefathers had done years before. At this point in my life, now with a new baby and a wife in tow, I was ready to depart from this tainted land for me, swearing that I would never go back. Nevertheless, I started meeting new friends. Continue reading
I had to admit that Pug would not have made a “Good Wife,” not then nor ever for me. But then, I had to further admit that I had been looking at our lives through my own experience with women. The truth was that I was overwhelmed with that hidden side of my life, that I had been growing up with experiences gained mostly from Westindian women. Continue reading
China’s mood didn’t change over the course of the next few days, however, and it was something I could not talk to her about- ever- during the course of our life together. Her sullenness would become an ordeal for me, to have this young girl around not wanting to talk to me about anything. Worse yet, I was taking the blame and responsibility for something she had never wanted to discuss with me, her pregnancy. I would be glad every morning just to leave her and her apparent ailment behind and keep my mind on my job. Continue reading
Almirante, Bocas del Toro. Image thanks to travelpod.com
It was a dark and starless night that night as we headed for Bocas del Toro. For some reason I found myself standing alone next to a wooden bunk. I was patiently waiting for the girl of my dreams, my would be wife, the one who would make me a father, to return to my side from some errand or the other on board. Continue reading
“Ni Millones, Ni Limosnas- Queremos Justicia.” the words are inscribed in our hearts as well.
Here we see Remón at a reception on October 2, 1952 at the Tivoli Hotel offered by then Canal Zone Governor, Mr. J. S. Soybold in honor of President Jose A. Remon Cantera (left). Image thanks to the archives at the National (Castillero) Library.
I came home from work one day to meet up with my classmate Albert Bryan whom we all respected very much. He said to me, “Profesor Grant said to put on your uniform and meet the bus at school.” I hurriedly prepared for the trip which ended up in Panama City. In reality we would really not do any singing, but would be attending the funeral of our slain President, José Antonio Remón Cantera. Continue reading
Image thanks to http://www.bubblews.com/news/1868973-teen-pregnancy
The problem of teen pregnancies would soon visit my family in Colon as my sister, Aminta, following her repeated disappearing acts from the house, reported to my mother that she was missing her period. By then my aunts, my mother’s sisters, declared her pregnant. Somehow my mother would blame me for not taking better care of my younger sister. Continue reading