The evening of October 10th we could hear lots and lots and LOTS of cars honking down in town. It was a weekday evening so it was odd. I sent a What’sApp message to Lesia, owner of the Vista Grande apartments and she didn’t know what was going on either.
The next day we found out that Panama had qualified to go to the 2018 World Cup Soccer for the first time. Now the celebrating made sense.
At midnight that night, President of Panama Juan Carlos Varela tweeted that all public and private businesses and schools would be closed the following day for a National Holiday. The people getting the holiday loved it if they knew about it. Unfortunately the announcement was very late and many people didn’t get the word. I heard tales of children showing up at school only to find out it was closed.
I’m told that workers who did work were paid 2 1/2 times the normal rate because it was a national holiday. Folks take their soccer seriously here!
When we were in David on Thursday, there were already t-shirts for sale on the side of the road for the event!