We are continuing to love Playa Venao. Villa Marina is the spot to be. We start the mornings off on the deck planning our days and sipping coffee. There are days where we only leave the house to jump in for a quick swim and enjoy just being in our cozy space. There have been a few stormy days where we sit back reading and watching the water dripping off of the rafters.
Other days, we go on excursions to see what lies around us. One afternoon, we did a random drive and took a turn down the skinny little road by the Oria Arriba sign. This is still cowboy country. This entire area actually. There are areas like Venao where a lot of the jungle has been allowed to reforest but much of the land here has been cleared and there are big green expanses of grass between clumps of rainforest. I love that many of the locals still get around by horseback. This is especially prevalent west of Venao and anywhere as you move into the interior. These guys use their horses for work and the caballos are really well cared for.
There is a small sign along the road between Venao and Pedasi that indicates a couple of beaches at the end, Playa Miel and Playa Chumico. I didn’t realize how far it was from the main road but we committed to get to the end even though the sun was getting low. Things were a little muddy from the recent rains and the road rose up and down through the hills.
We came upon a troop of howlers in a stand of forest about halfway in. They let us know we were there by roaring out as we approached. No matter how many monkeys I see, I haven’t gotten jaded yet. We always stop and give them a visit.
Finally, we arrived at the beach. The last bit in was four wheel drive stuff over slimy rock. We decided to save the tires and walk the final 100 meters or so. A small river emptied into the sea at Playa Chumico but it wasn’t all that exciting. We backtracked out as the sun went down and chalked up another day in Panama.
Every day, we get into the sea at least once. I mostly swim around trying to save my shoulder. PJ gets her boogie on and goes for the solo paddle runs. Yesterday, she went all of the way to the far point disappearing around the corner of the bay. Just as I was starting to worry, she reappeared and powerfully stroked her way across the outside back to our end of Venao. Beautiful days spent in the ocean, reading, meditating and learning to speak Spanish. The Sonic Venao festival has descended upon us and this weekend will be a huge rave in town, kind of a mini burning man. We’ll watch from the wings.