“Captain Brian Holaway is well versed in the intricacies of our unmatched locale. He can guide to and through a multitude of out-of-the way tidal creeks, bayous, keys and islands. More important is his passionate interest and respect for the region. With unique insights from his many explorations and his studies, not only does he identify the birds and wildlife that inhabit our semi-tropical watery land, but he explains their interconnectedness to their environment and each other. In addition, he shares the fascinating history of rugged people who came long before us: Florida Native Indians, the Calusa, the Spanish, the Cubans, early homesteaders, and the wisdom evident in the growth of their culture.

You will come away with great enjoyment and a new understanding of this beautiful place and its history.”

Historian, Betty Anholt
Author of Sanibel’s Story

Monday, July 12, 2010

Panama day 2

My guide, Cesar, thought it would be a good day for a drive in the country. I couldn't have agreed more. Cesar is a team roper and a cow hand, as well as a guide. Growing up in western Nebraska I was around cattle, many rodoes and some of my best friends are ropers. Needless to say, an enjoyable time was had driving to the far stretches of Panama through handmade cattle gates, pastures, forging rivers and walking beaches with no footprints except for the occassional crab. We stopped by old fish markets, observed fishermen mending nets, just like the Calusa of southwest Florida did hundreds of years ago. The vistas were stunning. The people were friendly and answered all my curious questions. The flora observed was undeniably mind shattering.

Panama Day One

Having the right guide makes all the difference. Lewis and Clark had Sacagawea, Ponce deLeon had natives of the area or at least from Cuba to help show him the way to Florida. On my trip to Panama I also had a great guide, Cesar, pronounced (Say sir).
I flew into Panama city on a low tide, looking down on the frigate birds as we made the final approach my thoughts were of Totch Brown and how he had landed in this spot a time or two, also of my 8th grade social studies book studying the isthmus of Panama.
My destination- 3 hours from Panama city. The trip was long but enjoyable. I studied the leaf patterns of the trees, making myself familiar with the different plants. My mind went back to the Amazon and the different patterns of leaves observed 10 years previous. The trees in Panama are some of the biggest I have ever seen. Unbelievably amazing , I never tire of looking at flora.
Cesar drove to our destination in the dark, dodging potholes in the road with plants growing out of them.
The morning brought a loud surf to my ears. I sprang out of bed and observed hummingbirds of all colors, green parrots, a kingbird, orchids and bromeliads on my quick walk to the beach just 40 feet from the house. The beach was filled with rocks, driftwood of magnitude proportions, and yes, sea shells.