Gary’s Blog: The potential in what we are doing

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The land after being chopped of brush

February 23,  2015

From: Gary

Morning here,

An hour until daylight, and Tami is still warm in her bed.

I will start her a cup of coffee in a few minutes, and she can get up.

I talked to Beto the neighbor last night, he says our seed potatoes are a week or two away,

And that he is looking for lumber for us to start projects with.  His kids wanted a kitchen cabinet, and he knew the furniture store stuff is made from low quality woods, and that if he helped me find better wood, I would help him make the cabinet…

Which would also be the boot up for the wood shop, as my first projects will be work benches for all the tools…  and we will need to buy a big enough generator to run them all as a business,  meaning I can start setting up shop, and get locals working alternative income jobs from their tomatoes and cucumbers.. They are all having the middlemen problems, manipulated prices, so I think a bunch of alternative business focuses will help. 

One with a lot of potential is aqua culture, as we can grow corn here to feed meal worms, and use the meal worms for fish food, and eliminate the boughten fish food.  I grew up with aquariums, my dad was into it, and it became my own hobby for years, including marine aquariums, so I have a good basis for aquaculture here.

What I need to do is get the shop booted and be able to make some steel forms and get a concrete mixer so we can do production tanks that we can sell to locals..  I worked up a design years ago for a hexagonal concrete tank with overflow that can be stacked down a hillside, like for a fish ladder,  and have water dropping from one into another, which would work well here, and be very pretty.

The President of the local co-op was asking me about aqua culture tanks and what I knew. I explained the food problem and how to get around the fish food salesman, and be more self sufficient, and how to do a set up where the tanks could be bottom drained for irrigation water for coffee and veggies.. and how to grind the fish wastes for fertilizer and chicken food etc..

There is a serious market for such tanks..  And we have the truck to haul them already.. 

I also suggested at the co-op meeting that they get involved with us making green house frames, and selling them.  It will take awhile for that one to sink in with them, but I am sure it will…  I sense that they are talking, and helping us quietly,  which is humorous, as about 80% of the people in our area are from the same family…

What that means, is if we can start some businesses also to their benefit, we will get a lot of quiet backing and connections..  This family is huge in Panama, you can’t go anywhere or do anything without running into the last name.. Never seen anything like it in my life, a made to order army of connections waiting to be used for positive things… I joked with the lawyer that they needed to start a family political party, there is that many of them…

I also have gotten the impression that they understand the potentials of the tools that Tami bought and brought, that it means a cottage industry in an area that needs that kind of thing.. I guess they understood what I pointed out at the local co-op meeting, that we came here to be involved with them too, and weren’t just retirees who thought we didn’t need them because we had money etc…

Basically this area is “Insurmountable Opportunity”, and an incredible place to set up myriad businesses…  I think in time many American retirees under the new paradigm of needing continued income after retirement, and less living expenses, will gladly jump on board of Tami’s hay ride… 

I see it as a win/win situation…  for the first time the locals and the Americans who will come will be ready to work together like never before…  The potential feels like a perfect storm building,  and even the country’s current president’s family has farms in the area..  so any good results will be heard about in Panama City…

Living in a small country is like living in a small town, everybody hears about what you are doing… which can be used to one’s advantage, if what you do is positive..

There is much more business potential here than in the US, They lack things we know of as “proven to work” businesses… and there is the lack of  competition, in the US you can’t do anything that doesn’t already have people doing it with more money backing them. Here, it is often wide open… like a “New Frontier”…..

So it’s fertile ground for Americans who know things and want to extend their utility and continue to enhance their income streams…  It’s also a very good place to set up one’s kids at the center of trade for this side of the planet with the canals and the inevitable connecting link for the inter American highway across the Darien Gap, which you can read about on line…  Basically Central America of the future will be the crossroads of this side of the planet, and probably the business capital of the world, thanks to the vast areas of agricultural land nearby in South America, and rainfall patterns…

For a bright future, it has everything.

And I realized long ago, that teaching one’s kids about opportunities via travel was the best form of education possible…  Nothing like them seeing possibilities for international business for themselves, instead of just reading about it in a class room..

Personally I suspect we will see some of Tami’s friends come down and realize for themselves what she has stumbled into…  And it will build from there…

It’s a place where people can build their dreams, and get out of ruts known all too well, and do some good works in the process… 

Last night Tami got her Cashew seeds she has been wanting. Also the word our seed potatoes are on the way soon, and that Beto is looking for quality lumber so we can start the wood shop..   The best immediately local wood is in the locust family, it is yellow to orange in color, rot proof, and axe handle quality.  So I am looking forward to going into production with it, and making furniture in the neoindigenous/nomadic mind set.

I also want to start building the yurt frames I have designed, that are laced together of wood, so Tami can start sewing the covers. We brought the materials for several small structures to start off with for our own use, and see if there is interest in making them as a business here too..  I am thinking on my own unit, and to have wall height lower than on Tami’s, also change the roof angle for a loft bed. The lower wall height would add a Tipi like effect when combined with the increased area above, and I want to design some take apart or folding furniture to match, so that my house and its furniture are harmonious..

Here you really don’t need a stick built house, the climate is too perfect.  And portable shelters are so nice to live in as an ambient space…    I worked in construction for years, and prefer structures that have more creativity involved. Not the boxes sold to little Fischer-Price people wannabees like in the US…

I don’t like the payments or the taxes, or the upkeep, I like simple and beautiful, and know I can get materials here to continue making the structures if the market pans out, which I think it will…

You never know; we might just hit a cord with some types, and they like spending the winters someplace nice, where they can live simple and stylish, and work in gardens instead of shoveling snow and dealing with frozen pipes?

The airline tickets are cheaper than the heating bill for the winter by far…  and a door into endless summer sure sounds nice… 

Tami never complains about the climate here in the highlands, never sweltering or humid, never cold, just too nice to believe most of the time…

 

G

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