Yesterday, a group of us decided to go explore the city. Early on we decided to try to walk to the coast line to take some pictures. Since we had no idea where we were going or how to get there, we had to ask for directions many times along the way. This is when I reinforced something I had learned early on about Panamanian culture. I quickly discovered that people were very friendly and willing to help.
The next thing I noticed was the general charm that Panama City offered. Here you can find anything from an old restaurant to a brand new sky scraper. We even saw a building with a twist design. I had never seen anything quite like it before. When we finally made it to the coast it did not disappoint as we took some beautiful pictures.
While the people and the buildings were great, they did not provide the most valuable lesson on this little excursion. What I learned most was what it feels like to be a foreigner in someone else’s country. As we walked around the city many people stared and even pointed at us, because we truly were foreigner visiting their country. Though this may seem simple, it really was a valuable lesson. I was, for basically the first time in my life, able to put myself in the shoes of those who immigrate or simply visit the US from other foreign countries. Because of this experience, I have gained a greater respect and understanding for what foreigners experience when they come to the US.
– AJ Bucci