Jubilee January – 2020

WOW- a great ending to 2019 and a dynamic beginning to 2020! Chanukah and Christmas coming together but Chanukah going until almost New Years and then a wonderful beginning to a brand new year and also a new decade!

Happy Chanukah 2019 and Happy New Year 2020

Happy Chanukah 2019 and Happy New Year 2020

The letters that only come once a year from friends and family re-capping a year of news is always welcomed at the end of December (or earlier) and really so much fun to read and catch up on the years news!

Phyllis, Charlie and Beverly

Phyllis, Charlie and Beverly

As always, I spend a very elegant, but quiet New Years Eve and did so this year as well. I fix myself some elegant and special hors d’oeuvres along with my special Champagne and love watching what is happening on Broadway!. At midnight, I sit on my 12th floor balcony where I have a 180 degree view of all of the beaches and their fireworks. Quite a beautiful display that never disappoints. I do go to Bev and Charlies every New Year before their party begins so that I can wish them both a Happy New Year and then return back to the Condo for my evening of celebration!

During this month I have spent a lot of time settling in and still re-adjusting to being back in Panama. I am still not ready to be back in big crowds of people or attend big social gatherings. Trying to get my feet on the ground and as I have said before – I have other objectives for myself this time around. I also realize that I truly had quite a year and a half when I returned to the U. S. and had many decisions to make as well. It has definitely taken a toll on me physically and mentally that I now realize, but I am coming out of it, slowly but surely.

Have enjoyed going out to some dinners with friends – some pictures of these, but again, I keep forgetting the camera and forgetting to capture everything that goes on all month long – so sorry! Have also been in and out of the city a lot. Decided to get my physical here since so many of my doctors have retired in the U. S. and I also realized how much less expensive it is here in Panama. I am thrilled, truly, with the care and time spent with a new patient as well as the price!. I would be paying more in the U. S. as I have to pay the supplement. Let go of a supplement a long time ago as it was less expensive to just pay the difference than to carry the supplement. And this may come as a surprise to many, but the WHO ranks Panama above the U.S. in Medical Care, and then Colombia is even above Panama – YES  –  TRUE!  Many ex-pats here go to Colombia if they need surgery. Excellent surgeons, care and CHEAP!!!!

Sorry, got off course- back to Dinners! Had a delightful dinner and evening at Lisa and Paul’s home down at the beach here,

Paul, Phyllis, Joe and Lisa

Paul, Phyllis, Joe and Lisa

along with Barb and Joe. Lisa is an excellent cook (they are originally from Belgium, now living in Marbella, Spain part time and here in Panama part time) and that European background really does come into play with the cooking and serving. Another fabulous evening was at the Full Moon dinner here at VistaMar with friends Cheryl and Garry  and Marlene and Joe.

Marlene is having a "great " time!!!

Marlene is having a “great ” time!!!

Phyllis, Garry,Cheryl,Joe and Marlene

Phyllis, Garry,Cheryl,Joe and Marlene

These evenings down near the beach are always magnificent and a delicious meal prepared by our own Chef Pascal. Throw in entertainment and you have a “premier” evening of fun, food and frolic!!!!! One other night I went to Las Bovedas, another beachfront restaurant with friends Cheri and Brent. Another delicious meal with entertainment. Great conversation and another truly fun evening!.

Cheri, Brent and Phyllis

Cheri, Brent and Phyllis

There have been other fabulous evenings (with no photos) with friends – one that truly stands out is the Thai Dinner that dear friend Elaine made for several of us one evening and that was truly sensational as is all of her dinners!. A GREAT chef and husband Ron, the ultimate host, never letting a glass of wine get empty. Pretty soon no one knows if they are coming or going!. Maybe this is the secret to us ALWAYS loving Elaine’s cooking!!!!

I am still trying to catch up on a few odds and ends around here and almost all finished. Weather now that it is the DRY season has been fairly nice with many days, as well as the nights having wonderful breezes so no need to the A/C 24/7! A nice change once in a while (I will not tell you about the “burning” still allowed to go on. Sometimes that does happen near me and you must shut the windows and doors because you cannot breathe. One of these days perhaps the government will wake up and make that a crime!) But when it is nice, it is truly delightful to breathe the fresh air. Other than that, I am enjoying the beach and the salt water rather than the pool in my own building. I have found that the Chlorine in the pool is making my skin fell and look like an Alligator and have stopped going into any pool!. I love the salt water and can also walk on the beach here, so it is truly much healthier in the long run. It is usually much cooler and the winds are stronger down at the beach, so folks, I am enjoying what I can and finding I am truly enjoying doing “my thing.”

Guess I really did make this Blog happen on time after all. A great beginning for 2020, but as I said last month, please do not expect this to keep up. It will happen when it happens from now on. I am looking forward, as always, to catching up with so many of you as we usually do on a monthly basis. Hope you are all well and until next month, Love to you all………………………….

PS Now a great Soccer picture of my grandson Max who turned 14 this month. Max, you are towering over me already and am so proud of you!

MAX

MAX

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