Monthly Archives: January 2014



Guarare, Panama, a small town just west of Las Tablas, is “the home of the chuco-chuco,” at least according to the song “Yo me voy a Guarare.”  A chuco-chuco is a percussion instrument, similar but not the same as the güiro which is found in Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Brazil and other Latin American countries. Like the güiro, the chuco-chuco is […]

Music: Chuco-Chuco Percussion in Guarare


This is the second installment of six posts about renting in the Azuero. ### “Ooo,” my Panamanian friends said with envy, “a quincha house!  Is it as cool as they say?”  In a  word, yes.  It was a LOT cooler than than the concrete block buildings I had been in. The rosy-peach lenses I wear brightened considerably when I first […]

Adventures in Renting 2: Life in a Quincha House



Zumba is available right here in Las Tablas!  What is arguably becoming the world’s most popular fitness regime, Zumba is an instructor-choreographed Latin dance routine combining elements of hip-hop, soca, samba, rhumba, salsa, merengue, mambo and martial arts.  What a kick.  What FUN. And so good for you. Alicia Conivares, the instructor in Las Tablas, is a remarkable woman.  She’s […]

Local Resource: Zumba Class in the Azuero





Holiday dinner rolls starting to make you feel guilty?  Exercise that New Year’s resolution to exercise!  What is there to do here in the Azuero? More than you might think!  This post is the first in a planned series of 7 about the types of exercise is available here.  Today we offer an overview of known possibilities. For instance, here […]

Hot Bod: Getting Exercise in the Azuero


Imagine hundreds and hundreds of lovely women in skirts so full they can be lifted like wings, wearing beaded floral headpieces that quiver delightfully as they dance in the sun.  The women are like flowers themselves.  This is the Mil Pollera, and last Saturday I had the privilege of watching my friend Soraya prepare her beautiful, twenty-something daughter, Marion, for […]

Dressing for La Mil Polleras