Family Travel

Photo Friday: Semaphore Hill, Panama

While I’m currently traipsing about soggy Scotland with my mom and sister—and having a blast, as I’m sure you expect—it is quite cold, comparable to late January in Tennessee, and I’m pretending that I’m back in Panama where the heat and humidity were so stifling, I didn’t stop sweating for 36 hours.

Panama Canopy Tower

Panama Canopy TowerIf you recall, my friend Sam and I headed from Panama City to the Canopy Tower, a beautiful and affordable eco-resort near the Gamboa rainforest—where a sloth slept outside my window and pleasing bird calls, that might have been an annoyance anywhere else, woke me up at 4am—and it was just the neatest experience.

Panama Canopy TowerThe thing about a place like the rainforest is that the obvious things—such as the colorful toucan perched on the tip-top of a 100-foot-tall tree or an impish monkey swinging from branch to branch—are clearly amazing, but in truth every last facet of the place is equally as mesmerizing.

Panama Canopy Tower

Panama Canopy TowerSometimes we neglect to recognize the smallest things in life, and that’s why I like photography.

Panama Canopy TowerTaking in a scene through a viewfinder makes you, quite literally, focus on details you might otherwise never notice.

Panama Canopy TowerLike this teeny-tiny frog, for example—barely visible to the human eye.

Panama Canopy TowerOr the veins of a leaf during a rainstorm, straining to provide structure and stability.

Panama Canopy TowerIn my constant rush to see everything, do everything, be all things to all people, I’m more guilty than most of stopping to smell the roses.

Panama Canopy TowerBut out in the middle of the rainforest, with just a friend, a guide and a camera for company over the course of the day, these important lessons hit you over the head like a ton of bricks.

Panama Canopy TowerNow if you’ll excuse me, I’m retreating back to beneath the covers where Mom and Kari currently reside with a bottle of Pinot Grigio to warm my toes and make sure they give me my share. Because oftentimes, enjoying the small stuff simply means being present.

Panama Canopy Tower

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Comments ( 20 )

  1. Great advice and reflection. I’m getting So excited planning for Costa Rica. Maybe volunteering at the Sloth Sanctuary, a tour with OATS or Caravan. This list gets long.
    Gaelyn recently posted..Arizona Sister butterflyMy Profile

  2. Thanks for the reminder friend! Enjoy the warm covers and the bottle of pinot! So jealous of you ladies!

    • All I need to do is think about the beady-eyed black birds flying at our windows–and, er, the little situation with our late-night guest–to start laughing all over again!

  3. Great advice and beautiful photos! I love that teeny tiny frog (and I’m not a big fan of amphibians)! Hope you’re having an amazing time in Scotland – can’t wait to see your pics!
    Lisa recently posted..Joining the Travel Mamas TeamMy Profile

  4. That frog is SO cute! And yes, great conclusion: be present. That was one of my new year’s resolutions this year!
    Susan @ Travel Junkette recently posted..Travel, Etc., Links of the Week – 9/21/12My Profile

  5. I love that itty bitty frog! I’m always amazed at little things that I’m used to seeing in much bigger sizes. A friend of mine has a whole bunch of baby turtles and really, they just look like they got zapped by shrinker machine.
    terra recently posted..My conflicted and very serious opinions regarding the Mustache.My Profile

  6. Such a lush vegetation! I really like the close up shots that show the smallest of details.
    Audrey | That Backpacker recently posted..Locked Out Of My ApartmentMy Profile

  7. I’m developing a small obsession with traveling more extensively through Central America. This post is not helping lady :)

  8. i am naturally attracted to verdant green and lush vegetation! just like what you showed in the photos..Great reflection, i felt guilt about that!

  9. Gorgeous pictures! Panama is totally on my dream-trip list. (Scotland too!) So much beauty everywhere. And I love the little frog:)
    Terumi recently posted..You can dress them up….My Profile

  10. I’ve never been in a rain forest. It does seem very relaxing to sleep overnight in one, even with birds chirping at 4 a.m. Something about a sloth out my window seems very soothing.
    Sonja recently posted..My One Wish (Briefly) Comes TrueMy Profile

  11. Absolutely loved your pictures, such clarity. I didn’t know frogs could be that small, unless that one was just a baby maybe.

    • All the frogs we saw were the small, so I guess it’s just a special Panamian breed! I would never have spotted them either had we not had a guide with us. Those guys’ eyes are amazing.

  12. You can’t beat taking snaps in a rainforest…so much to explore and so much to find. Your pictures are stirring the traveling bug in me again!


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