It's been one of those days.
I woke up an hour before the alarm, which meant it was 6. I was getting up later because I had an appointment at immigration and didn't need to come in the office beforehand.
I got in the car and started heading down to Caledonia. Now what you need to realize is that there have historically (as in the last five years) been two immigration offices - the new one and the old one in the hood. Because I am under the "old laws" (sounds like the Old Testament doesn't it????) my paperwork has forever been at the old office.
So begins the adventure:
I'm going to list one situation and then one way I chose to be grateful, even though I didn't want to be.
1. I get yelled out in my car by a police women directing traffic because I didn't move when she motioned because there were pedestrians in front of my car.
grateful moment: I didn't go to jail for hitting a pedestrian.
2. I learned that I can't parallel park on the left-hand side of the street. I was laughing at myself. AND of course there was a whole crowd of people around while I tried.
Grateful moment: I went around the block and found a place where parallel parking wasn't needed.
3. I was at the wrong immigration building. Back in the olden days when I first moved here, there was only one immigration building. Then there were two. After the new one first opened, I went there assuming that was where I was to go. Wrong! So I've had this fear of not going to the wrong one again.
Well, today was that day. The old one is now closed for real (maybe I was their last case) and now I'm in the only immigration building.
Grateful moment: The police man outside the old building was SUPER kind (Ok, so the roommates and neighbor think he was hitting on me, but he was like my dad's age - Ew!) and was helpful. And he said "mi reina" which might be my all-time favorite Spanish term of endearment.
4. Traffic INSANE to get out of Caledonia. See photo
Then we moved. I sat through two more to go through the intersection while performing some awesome car weaving skills so as to avoid being smashed by a bus.
Grateful moment: I wasn't driving a bus and I have a phone to take a picture during this time.
5. I made good time getting to the new building (20 minutes is good time) and there was no parking anywhere.
Grateful moment: I parked along tumba muerto (insanely busy road with a grass ditch median where cars park) and I found a spot, and I didn't get hit by a car walking against the traffic in the road to get to the building.
6. I meet Ruben, the lawyer inside, and guess what? The system that makes the carnet was not working.
Grateful moment: So thankful for a lawyer who knows what to do and was so kind even though I majorly messed up with location. AND thankful that he was gracious and accepted my apology. The Lord totally used him to bless me today with sweet words of affirmation. Such a gift.
7. Then I decide to go on to the bank to cash checks because now I have my passport back to cash checks. Abby forgot that today is the last day of the month, meaning lots of people got paid today. Not only was the line somewhat long, but nearly every person ahead of me was doing transactions for their businesses ie: getting change for the till.
Grateful moment: this one is much harder!!!! Thankful to have my passport back so I can actually go to the bank. AND I got a good parking spot. AND when I left, the line had DOUBLED in the 30 minutes I was there.
8. Go to work for the first time at 11am from the sagas of the morning and within ten minutes of being there cry with a sweet friend. Not because of the day, but just life.
Grateful moment: being able to cry with the quivering breathing and have your friend hug you and not need to say anything.
I know much more happened today, but that's all I can process for now.
This is not a complaining about Panama post - it's just a living life post. Wherever we live, there are always days where things don't go the way we planned! Part of the aventura!
Thankful for moments where I can live life, laugh and cry with friends who are family, be reminded that it's all a process (that will be a new post soon), and that each day is a gift. I may not want to repeat this one in its entirety, but it had precious moments that I took mental snapshots of to hold onto for coming days.