Trip Start Jan 01, 2001
340Trip End Dec 28, 2010
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17th - A final day lazing round the camp.
18th- Back into Panama City first thing as we wanted to go to the Seaboard Marine Office to book the ferry. On arrival we were advised that we would have to come back after 2 pm to get the paperwork. After that we wanted to post a parcel to America and went to the Post Office, you can imagine our surprise when told that they would not accept the parcel because it had parcel tape securing it, apparently we are only allowed to use glue. We then planned to go to a large mall to do some shopping, the adverts stated that this was the largest shopping mall in Panama, but it was obviously aimed at the locals, they had T shirts on sale at $1 .99 each or cheaper in bulk, the problem was you were not allowed to try anything on. As a result after lunch we went to the hotel to drop of John. We left him at 3 pm and then started to return to the shipping office about 20 km away, unfortunately the road quickly turned into chaos. In principle it was a 4 lane road, 2 lanes in each direction with very few traffic lights but several intersections with no lights. Approaching one of these intersections the traffic came to a stop which lasted quite a while and as a result the traffic in the side street decided to just drive out and block the traffic coming against us until a space occurred. That is bad enough but since the traffic was not moving more cars came out the side until there were about 5 cars lined up trying to get into our line of traffic an therefore no traffic could move on the other side of the road. Eventually we crawled forward and approached the next intersection, about 200 m along, and exactly the same thing happened only this time to make it worse we had a couple of buses and some taxis driving from behind us down to the junction to try to get into the line of traffic trying to get in from the side. Chaos does not really describe it; the problem was an accident in front of us that involved a car coming in from a side street and hitting a truck. This almost blocked the two lanes of traffic on our side; by law here you are not allowed to move the vehicles until the police have arrive at the scene and taken measurements hence the delays. In the end we arrive at the office with two minutes to spare but were successful in getting the documents.
19th - The next few days are going to be spent tidying up and getting the vehicle ready to sail. We have to make a bulkhead to fit just behind the front seats as we did shipping it to the USA; in addition we have to remove anything that can be stolen, such as the reversing monitor and spotlights.