Saturday, December 12, 2009

Why Having Your Washer & Dryer Outdoors Can Be A Good Thing

On Friday, December 11th, we were expecting a plumber and a cable guy to call on us, so we stayed home all day to wait. Neither of them could (or would) commit to a 2-hour or 4-hour time frame, as is common in the U.S.A. Here in Panama, we feel lucky if the person shows up on the scheduled day. The plumber showed up late in the afternoon. He brought 3 sizes of the part he knew he would need, but none of them would fit. So he had to return the following morning with the correct size.

The cable guy, who we hoped would be restoring our internet service (we had none since our return on the afternoon of December 9th), had not arrived by 3 PM, so Les gave him a call to see if he was still planning to come that day. Yes, he confirmed that he would be here. Five o'clock rolled around and Les and I began to have serious doubts. Six o'clock arrived but the cable guy did not. We gave up all hope for that day, and also figured he would probably not be there on Saturday, so we would go another few days without internet. About 8:15 PM, a truck drove up out front - the cable guy! After a quick check of cables and connectors inside the house, he roared off to locate the amplifier, and within 15 minutes he was back and our internet service had been restored.

So anyway, we were working around the house all day, and for me, that included several loads of laundry. Our washer and dryer are located outside, next to the house near the kitchen door and the laundry sinks, a common arrangement in Panama. While heading out to move a load from the washer to the dryer, I saw a large black woodpecker with a bright red head fly in to a nearby pine. It landed out of sight, but within a few seconds, another of the same type flew in and landed in plain view - a male Lineated Woodpecker! It was a yard bird, and I was able to run inside and interrupt Les from his vacuuming, so he got to see it too. Lineated Woodpecker is a common species in Panama, but we were excited to see a pair in our yard.

A few hours later, Les was watching the birds at the feeder, and he spotted a primo male Red-legged Honeycreeper going for the bananas. Another common and wide-spread species in Panama, but a fun new yard/feeder bird for us.

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