“Pan de los pobres” – Bread of the poor. I loved our trip to Panama and I have always admired hard-working people. No matter where you go in the world…
there will always be the local wharf where the fishermen come in with their catch for the day. Fish is the poor man’s staple if he lives by the sea. He gets up in the early sunrise and always goes out with expectation.
There are camaraderie and news to share in the rhythm of the day.
Hard work gives its own reward. One sets a goal to catch some fish, bake some bread, plant a garden, build a house. The expectation of achieving the goal is the joy of living! The deed accomplished is just contentment.
Panama still has this joy of living with huge construction projects of commercial significance, international expanding airports, and highways being built on stilts over the bay. Even the Panama Canal is being enlarged. The people are alive with expectation of better times ahead, while we in North America whimper at our decaying economy.
Panama is the bridge between the two continents and the canal cuts through this in a narrow passage from one ocean to another. Over much history, Panama has sat and watched the world go by. No longer passive, I feel this country’s growing pulse. I see the people’s hope!
Expectation is a funny thing. Without it, we go nowhere. What pray tell, do Americans, Canadians, and Europeans expect if we have no vision for our future? But in these central lands hard work is still a matter of pride. That’s a biblical principle, isn’t it?
“Where there is no vision, the people perish….” Proverbs 29:18
“We work hard with our own hands. When we are cursed, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure it…” 1 Corinthians 4:12
Hats off for the lowly fishermen, and all hardworking men and women wherever they live. We are blessed to have meaningful employment when so many in the world do not. At least those in Panama still seem to believe in the “Central American dream”…a prosperous future for the rewards of their labour.
Is this your impression of Panama too? Did you have a grand adventure of your own in this country that you’d like to share? Please comment!